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  • FIRST POST
    • MSE Guy
    • By MSE Guy 23rd May 13, 4:49 PM
    • 1,628Posts
    • 1,255Thanks
    MSE Guy
    0 WOW
    MSE News: Summer holiday planning: Where will your pound go furthest?
    • #1
    • 23rd May 13, 4:49 PM
    0 WOW
    MSE News: Summer holiday planning: Where will your pound go furthest? 23rd May 13 at 4:49 PM
    "If you're planning on going away this summer but haven't booked yet, MoneySavingExpert.com compares how far your pound will get you at popular holiday destinations..."


    Click reply below to discuss. If you havenít already, join the forum to reply. If you arenít sure how it all works, read our New to Forum? Intro Guide.
Page 1
    • Mobeer
    • By Mobeer 23rd May 13, 5:48 PM
    • 1,778 Posts
    • 4,438 Thanks
    Mobeer
    • #2
    • 23rd May 13, 5:48 PM
    • #2
    • 23rd May 13, 5:48 PM
    (1) the link in the article to discuss points back at the article, not here!

    (2) Why not consider some other countries? Outside Europe, I'd bet that Cambodia is cheaper than your US prices!

    (3) 1.5ml of water in the comparison is a size portion I have never ordered - I would order 666 times larger than this
    • Mr Wang
    • By Mr Wang 23rd May 13, 6:37 PM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 983 Thanks
    Mr Wang
    • #3
    • 23rd May 13, 6:37 PM
    • #3
    • 23rd May 13, 6:37 PM
    Nepal.

    The cheapest place I have ever been.... By far.

    http://www.thesummerholidayofalifetime.com/
  • Bob the Saver
    • #4
    • 23rd May 13, 8:32 PM
    • #4
    • 23rd May 13, 8:32 PM
    Nepal.

    The cheapest place I have ever been.... By far.

    http://www.thesummerholidayofalifetime.com/
    Originally posted by Mr Wang
    Thought you were going to say Skegness.
    • Mr Wang
    • By Mr Wang 23rd May 13, 8:36 PM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 983 Thanks
    Mr Wang
    • #5
    • 23rd May 13, 8:36 PM
    • #5
    • 23rd May 13, 8:36 PM
    Thought you were going to say Skegness.
    Originally posted by Bob the Saver
    I shudder when I think of that place!

    Was it any surprise Skegness appeared on the Channel 4 documentary highlighting the worst of Britain - Skint.
  • Bob the Saver
    • #6
    • 23rd May 13, 8:51 PM
    • #6
    • 23rd May 13, 8:51 PM
    I shudder when I think of that place!

    Was it any surprise Skegness appeared on the Channel 4 documentary highlighting the worst of Britain - Skint.
    Originally posted by Mr Wang
    Just please I wasn't in Poundland to see it, not that I have a telly anyway
    • marks7389
    • By marks7389 23rd May 13, 10:52 PM
    • 75 Posts
    • 36 Thanks
    marks7389
    • #7
    • 23rd May 13, 10:52 PM
    • #7
    • 23rd May 13, 10:52 PM
    (3) 1.5ml of water in the comparison is a size portion I have never ordered - I would order 666 times larger than this
    Originally posted by Mobeer
    And the thought of paying up to £1.33 for such a tiny amount is, well, eye-watering!
    • CKhalvashi
    • By CKhalvashi 24th May 13, 5:33 AM
    • 8,976 Posts
    • 25,696 Thanks
    CKhalvashi
    • #8
    • 24th May 13, 5:33 AM
    • #8
    • 24th May 13, 5:33 AM
    For outside Europe, Odessa (Ukraine) and Batumi (Georgia), the second of which being where my family is originally from, are two of the cheapest places we've been in the last few years on the beach.

    Whilst you're in Georgia, Tbilisi is a beautiful city, and whilst you're there, Armenia is visa-free for UK nationals, and Yerevan (where I spent 4 months in 2011) and Vanazdor are also lovely places to be.

    The cheapest way to do this (last year), was to fly from LHR to Yerevan, spend some time in Armenia, then a minibus from Yerevan to Tbilisi (About £15 each, taxi is 250 Lari/£80 per car, less if you speak Russian), Tbilisi to Batumi (same price).

    Us Georgians, as well as the Armenians, are usually very hospitable, and Georgia is just as cheap (if not cheaper) than anywhere on the list; remember that the average wage is US$250 a month.

    Azerbaijan is not visa free, or as cheap, but is still a lovely country.

    CK
    "I kada sanjamo san, nek bude hiljadu raznih boja" (L. Stamenkovic)

    Call me Remainer or Romaniac, but not Remoaner. It's insulting and I have the right to have my voice heard too.

    I can spell, my iPad can't.
    • Gloomendoom
    • By Gloomendoom 24th May 13, 7:29 AM
    • 15,954 Posts
    • 22,307 Thanks
    Gloomendoom
    • #9
    • 24th May 13, 7:29 AM
    • #9
    • 24th May 13, 7:29 AM
    Thought you were going to say Skegness.
    Originally posted by Bob the Saver
    I drove though there once. I didn't realise that there were so many static caravans in the whole world, never mind a single English seaside town.

    The orange plastic palm trees were very impressive too.
    • worried jim
    • By worried jim 24th May 13, 4:28 PM
    • 10,184 Posts
    • 15,830 Thanks
    worried jim
    £2.15 for a can of Coke in Turkey?- you've been well'ad sunshine.
    "Only two things are infinite-the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not so sure about the universe"
    Albert Einstein
    • sandsy
    • By sandsy 24th May 13, 8:23 PM
    • 1,464 Posts
    • 894 Thanks
    sandsy
    The South African rand is the worst performing currency amongst emerging economies this year. Bad for them, good for tourists!
    • Pincher
    • By Pincher 25th May 13, 8:45 AM
    • 6,516 Posts
    • 2,491 Thanks
    Pincher
    Costco has a canteen with very good value for money food and drink. I am pretty sure it's better than Skegness.
    • gailmartin1969
    • By gailmartin1969 29th May 13, 4:51 PM
    • 17 Posts
    • 12 Thanks
    gailmartin1969
    Just come back from Corfu 10 days ago, I can guarantee the prices were higher than stated.
  • MrsE
    £2.15 for a can of Coke in Turkey?- you've been well'ad sunshine.
    Originally posted by worried jim
    I was surprised to see Turkey as more expensive than the rest of the med, imho Turkey is one of the cheapest med destinations.

    Where is cheap & tropical with a lot of bang for your buck long haul?
    Dom Rep?

    eta £54 for a meal for 2 in Turkey!!!! No its not, not in an average restaurant. The only time I've paid that in Turkey was in the white dolphin as eaten in by prince Charles, tina turner & bill clinton AND we had the lobster!!!!
    Last edited by MrsE; 05-06-2013 at 9:11 AM.
    • daveyjp
    • By daveyjp 5th Jun 13, 12:52 PM
    • 8,009 Posts
    • 6,585 Thanks
    daveyjp
    I've just been to Portugal, (admittedly not Algarve) and the prices are not typical for the whole of the Country.

    I can only assume the abundance of outlets in places like Albufeira keeps prices lower.

    The cheapest meal we had was £6 each at lunch for a main of chicken, chips and salad. Bottles of wine started at about £10. Most evenings the meal was was more than £50 and we didn't have three courses.

    Coffees were generally €1.40 to €1.80 for a small espresso. White coffee was more. I never saw any as low as 85p.

    Beer was €3-4 for 40cl of draught.
  • joolzred
    Nepal.

    The cheapest place I have ever been.... By far.

    http://www.thesummerholidayofalifetime.com/
    Originally posted by Mr Wang
    Also one of the most beautiful and friendly but then I'm biassed as I'm married to a Nepali!

    It's not all treks and mountain climbing (but you're spoilt if that is your thing) but also: spa type hotels, lakes, boating, scenery, fishing, biking, temples, history, plants and flowers, hinduism, buddhism, Gurkhas, monkeys and buffaloes! Visit Chitwan National Park for rhinos, tigers, elephants, exotic birds and a safari trip.

    Flights start at around £500 return (no direct flights from UK but can get through fares via India, Arab states) and small budget guesthouses start from £5 per night. A nice 'posh' hotel can cost you about £30+ per night per room.

    Dinner can cost as little as £1, 1ltr pure water around 20p and a small tea from 15p. Good for vegetarians and a country you could well lose a little piece of your heart to...

    Nepal is probably the poorest country in Asia, you will not find tourist facilities the same as developed countries but you will find an amazing, colourful, paradoxical culture!

    photos: http://www.molon.de/galleries/Nepal/

    Recommend going Sept-November and March-May to get the best weather and least rain.

    5 simple rules for happiness
    *Free your heart from hatred
    *Free your mind from worries
    *Live simply
    *Give more
    *Expect less
    • PompeyPete
    • By PompeyPete 15th Jun 13, 9:54 AM
    • 6,503 Posts
    • 9,374 Thanks
    PompeyPete
    Nepal.

    The cheapest place I have ever been.... By far.

    http://www.thesummerholidayofalifetime.com/
    Originally posted by Mr Wang
    I didn't read this thread until 7 June, and when I saw this posting it got my brain ticking.

    I was planning on taking the cook back to SE Asia next year for a few weeks. I like it because SE Asia Is fairly easy to plan, but she wants a change.

    So with the seed sown I started looking at Nepal, and within 2 days I'd booked the flights. Etihad via Abu Dhabi 18 March to 22 April.

    So I've got a lot of planning to do in order to fill in 30-odd days and nights, and when I told the missus she said "I ain't doing no trekking!"

    My basic plan will Kathmandu and the valley villages, Pokhara, and Chitwan National Park. I'll work side trips in around these three places.

    MR WANG, Nepal has never ever been on my radar, so I blame you! I'm using TA and LP to cluse-up on, so I'm quickly learning about the scams and the add-on taxes.

    I've read about your brilliant adventures in Nepal. But one thing I can't find is the name of any of the hotels you stayed at. I'm not saying we'd want to stay in them but it'd be nice to know the name of them, and whether you recommend any?

    TVM PP
  • joolzred
    I didn't read this thread until 7 June, and when I saw this posting it got my brain ticking.

    I was planning on taking the cook back to SE Asia next year for a few weeks. I like it because SE Asia Is fairly easy to plan, but she wants a change.

    So with the seed sown I started looking at Nepal, and within 2 days I'd booked the flights. Etihad via Abu Dhabi 18 March to 22 April.

    So I've got a lot of planning to do in order to fill in 30-odd days and nights, and when I told the missus she said "I ain't doing no trekking!"

    My basic plan will Kathmandu and the valley villages, Pokhara, and Chitwan National Park. I'll work side trips in around these three places.

    MR WANG, Nepal has never ever been on my radar, so I blame you! I'm using TA and LP to cluse-up on, so I'm quickly learning about the scams and the add-on taxes.

    I've read about your brilliant adventures in Nepal. But one thing I can't find is the name of any of the hotels you stayed at. I'm not saying we'd want to stay in them but it'd be nice to know the name of them, and whether you recommend any?

    TVM PP
    Originally posted by PompeyPete
    I'm married to a lovely Nepalese man and we go for long trips regularly (see post above yours)

    In Pokhara I can recommend 'Pun Hill Guest House' (budget but brilliant and not on TA) and Hotel Glacier (pricier and lovely people but with some extending work going on)

    Treks don't have to be 12 day affairs to Annapurna Base camp - there are day trips with 4x4 one or both ways or 2-3 day hikes with guest houses among lovely scenery.

    Pokhara is currently seeing a growth in Spa type hotels but there is so much you can see/do in the whole of Nepal that 30 days is very fillable - just remember that travel between areas takes a bit longer, even by air, as Nepal is probably the poorest country in Asia.

    And for good measure, here's my cut-and-paste of my tips that I sent to someone else earlier this year:

    "Regarding visas, if you are both UK citizens then just print off the tourist visa form from the Nepal Embassy website, fill it in on the plane and take the exact fee in US$ & two paspport pics with you (saves time at KTM airport) http://www.nepembassy.org.uk/visa.php

    Take some extra PP size pics with you as you'll need them to get a mobile phone SIM card etc & other purposes. I'd recommend taking a cheap unlocked phone or buying one there (same price as UK) and using PAYG top-up cards which you can buy at a bit more than face value at many shops eg 500 NPRs will cost you 550. N-cell or NTC(Namaste) are the only networks. Store numbers of local taxi drivers etc whom you've found helpful as they always need the work!

    As for budget - it depends, really. If you stay in a basic clean guesthouse double/twin room with own shower room without food then this is about £10+ per day per room in Pokhara and maybe a little less in Thamel in KTM. In KTM most guest houses/hostels are pretty rough but I have seen inside a few - "Hotel Puskar" located by Big Belly Cafe is a good location and rooms start from £4 per night. Otherwise go for 3* plus tourist hotels.

    Room prices are generally per size of room. I can put you in touch with a tourist company based in KTM and also trek/tour guides in Pokhara if you like.

    My favourite guest house in Pokhara is "Pun Hill Guest House" on Peaceful Road, on the edge of lakeside. Their rooms are around £10 per person per night but is extremely clean (the owner is wife of a retired British Gurkha gentleman who is a good friend of ours & I lived there for 2 months last time) It is a quiet place not for 'party people' but there are literally 100's of places to choose from in Thamel KTM & Lakeside Pokhara. Hire a taxi for a few hours & check out rooms & rates. All owners are happy (or should be) to show you rooms. You can also haggle a bit on price if it's quiet in terms of guests.

    Nepal is 80% Hindu with big Buddhist influences and significant Christian population. Most religious sites are a mixture of Hindu-Buddhist and both groups borrow from each other in cultural terms. I can recommend going to see Monkey Temple, Boudhanath Stupa, and maybe Durbar Square although bear in mind that as European non-Hindus you may not be allowed in all parts of all areas and that these sites charge quite a lot to foreign tourists for admission (as I'm married to a Nepali Hindu I get to see it all for free!)

    Money tips - change at airport or in KTM/Pokhara if you can as the rate is better, City areas have ATMs with guards and are safe. there is approx. 125-140 Nepalese Rupees (NPR) to £1.00. The rate changes daily so check when to get a good deal. They will only change undamaged foreign notes.

    Taxis - 250-300 NPRs from KTM airport to city centre. Hiring KTM taxi for half a day to take you to sights will be around 900-1000 NPRs.
    In Pokhara around the same.

    Food - tea & drinks range from 15-150 NPRs, imported brands costs wayyy more. A basic vegetarian Nepali meal (Dal-Bhat-Takari [rice, lentils, vegetables & salad & pickle]) costs from 150-250 NPRs but most places have fixed menu prices. Street stalls are great for vegetarian/sweet snacks & are very cheap. Bananas are around 70 NPRs per kilo & oranges 100 NPRs per kilo.

    Shops - small food, snack & supermarket type shops are fixed price. In tourist type shops you can haggle a little.

    Books are very expensive in Nepal - bring your own! even 2nd hand books in English are 150 NPRs plus. Maybe leave some there for your Nepali guest house staff and guests.

    Tips - expected from travel services etc - eg someone lifting bags from Airport to taxi maybe you'd give him 100 NPRs. Otherwise 10-15% is good. People earn very little and really appreciate it.

    Alms (baksheesh) - there is no welfare system in Nepal, disabled & elderly poor people have to beg to live. Keep a supply of 5, 10, 20 NPRs notes to give to deserving people but avoid large obvious giving. Sweets go down well with local poor children, as does fruits.

    Language - learn some basics at least before going, especially respect terms such as 'Namaskaar' (polite version of Namaste) for elders & use Dai/Didi to address older men & women (Dai = big brother Didi = big sister). A really good term is "malai chaiya-daina" (I don't need it) when you're being pestered for taxis & shops.

    Take - warm layers as later autumn/winter nights can be cold, hat, scarves, jumpers. Take toiletries such as female period products, baby wipes as these are expensive in Nepal. Things like soap, toothpaste etc are very cheap & can be bought there.

    You don't really need malaria tablets etc for Chitwan National Park as long as you take DEET repellent and travel outside of June-July-August."
    Last edited by joolzred; 15-06-2013 at 10:44 AM.
    5 simple rules for happiness
    *Free your heart from hatred
    *Free your mind from worries
    *Live simply
    *Give more
    *Expect less
    • PompeyPete
    • By PompeyPete 16th Jun 13, 8:32 AM
    • 6,503 Posts
    • 9,374 Thanks
    PompeyPete
    Joolzred, tvm for your excellent info.
    I'll give your postings the attention they deserve as soon as Fathers Day is over with.
    • Mr Wang
    • By Mr Wang 16th Jun 13, 10:26 AM
    • 1,265 Posts
    • 983 Thanks
    Mr Wang
    I didn't read this thread until 7 June, and when I saw this posting it got my brain ticking.

    I was planning on taking the cook back to SE Asia next year for a few weeks. I like it because SE Asia Is fairly easy to plan, but she wants a change.

    So with the seed sown I started looking at Nepal, and within 2 days I'd booked the flights. Etihad via Abu Dhabi 18 March to 22 April.

    So I've got a lot of planning to do in order to fill in 30-odd days and nights, and when I told the missus she said "I ain't doing no trekking!"

    My basic plan will Kathmandu and the valley villages, Pokhara, and Chitwan National Park. I'll work side trips in around these three places.

    MR WANG, Nepal has never ever been on my radar, so I blame you! I'm using TA and LP to cluse-up on, so I'm quickly learning about the scams and the add-on taxes.

    I've read about your brilliant adventures in Nepal. But one thing I can't find is the name of any of the hotels you stayed at. I'm not saying we'd want to stay in them but it'd be nice to know the name of them, and whether you recommend any?

    TVM PP
    Originally posted by PompeyPete
    Pete you have made an excellent choice, Nepal will live with you long after you have left, but you really do have to have your wits about you - That said most attempts at scamming you are feeble at best and you will see straight through them.

    I rarely put the places we stay because I like to keep the blog impartial, however, the places we stayed and I can vouch for are:

    Kathmandu: Ganesh Himal

    Pokhara: Butterfly Lodge

    Chitwan: Gaidia Lodge

    I can't remember the names of those in places like Lumbini and Nargarkot, but supply far outstrips demand and prices within the same bracket all usually offer the same or similar standard.

    In Kathmandu Ganesh Himal (like most other places) offer free pick up from the airport, just give a tip to the driver. In any case make sure you stay in Thamel for the best prices.

    In Pokhara make sure you are at Lakeside.

    I think my blog pretty much covers all the details, but if you PM me your email address I'll send you my itineraries that I used in 2011 and 2012 to give you a leg up. But bear this in mind, around Kathmandu is not a great distance and many places are easy day trips, don't think you have to book hotels because you will rarely be further than an hour away from Thamel.
    That said, though Pokhara is only 25 mins away on a plane, it still remains half a day on a bus. With Chitwan being about 3hrs from Kathmandu.

    Stu
    Last edited by Mr Wang; 16-06-2013 at 10:44 AM.
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