The Next Chapter

Against our tradition, we will not wait until the end of the month to summarize expenses. As we are leaving South America behind, it is time to wrap up the finances and move on to the next chapter.

From Quito, Ecuador, we arrived in Bogotá, a city we explored in only two days. Next, we visited the famous coffee region of Colombia, experiencing how delicious coffee is made. We ended our stay with a visit to Cartagena on the Caribbean coast, before flying back to Bogotá for one last night.

The Good

  • Colombia turned out to be the cheapest country in South America for us, even though we visited every sight we planned to.
  • We used our credit card points to pay for the last nights’ stay at the hotel with spa, saving us 130$. We spent part of it on a massage and haircut instead.

The Bad

  • Lodging in Cartagena is expensive, we paid around 40$ per night (which is still cheap for the area), yet the hostel was not of very high quality. We booked late, so there weren’t many options left.

A detailed list of expenses per country is listed below. The amounts per person are based on our two-person journey. Flights are listed separately (and are not included in the countries’ budget) as we booked these in advance.


  • Bogotá to Pereira & Pereira to Cartagena & Cartagena to Bogotá: $251 ($105.50 pp) on LAN Airlines,
  • Bogotá to Los Angeles: $649 ($324.50 pp) on Spirit.


  • Days: 13,
  • Budget: $1040 ($40 pppd),
  • Expenses: $949 ($36.50 pppd).

![Expenses Breakdown](

South America

We visited eight countries in South America over the past three months. After accumulating the budgets of all the South American countries we visited, we stayed on budget: the difference is 330$. The total amount spent per day per person is 91$. A bit more expensive than the 45.40$ in Asia, but generally South America is more expensive, as we budgeted.

  • Days: 98,
  • Budget: $10,905 ($55.50 pppd),
  • Expenses: $10,574 ($54 pppd),
  • Additional flight costs: $6,806 ($3,403 pp),
  • Additional visa costs: $480 (Herta).

Our Journey

Below are the numbers for your reference - we are extremely happy with what we spent and what we saw, it is a good balance between price and quality we reckon. In total, we spent 76$ per person per day.

  • Days: 167,
  • Budget: $16,015 ($48 pppd),
  • Expenses: $15,678 ($47 pppd),
  • Additional flight costs: $8,799 ($4,440 pp),
  • Additional visa costs: $910 ($160 Mark, $750 Herta).

The Next Chapter

The next two weeks we will explore the Pacific Northwest with visits to Portland, Seattle, and Vancouver. On April 25, we will be back in Los Angeles boarding a flight to Sydney, Australia, before finally settling down in Melbourne.

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We, Mark & Herta, are currently backpacking through Europe, and eventually planning to settle in London. Beyond that? The possibilities are endless.

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