11 Budget-Friendly Holiday Destinations for the Thrifty Adventurer in 2021

By Bella Arti | 30, Dec, 2020
11 Budget-Friendly Holiday Destinations for the Thrifty Adventurer in 2021

2021 is coming and we've been looking forward to it! How we miss breathing some fresh air and feeling the heat of the sun on our skin. Most of all, we are dying to reconnect with our dearest friends and relatives, especially through travel.

Now, let’s anticipate 2021-reconnect-with-your-friends moments by planning a vacation trip! To make sure your 2021 trip is smooth and well-planned, choosing a destination and setting up the budget estimation are the two first things you should do. To help you out, here is HalalTrip's selection of 11 unbelievably budget-friendly places around the world to visit in 2021. So, what are you waiting for? Keep scrolling!


1. Hanoi, Vietnam | SGD 35/day

Southeast Asia is known as the backpackers’ destination for its low price tag and natural beauty. Vietnam is first on our list for its incredibly cheap accommodation and food. Once there, Hanoi is the place to go. Why? Because here, you can get a bowl of Pho for only SGD 1.5 and Vietnam’s famous drip coffee for SGD 1. Tourist spots in Hanoi are the Old Quarter, Temple of Literature, Vietnam Women's Museum, and Hoan Kiem Lake. Plus, traveling anywhere in Hanoi is made easy with Grab, an affordable ride-hailing application in Vietnam.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 6.5 – SGD 13

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 7 – SGD 13 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 15 – SGD 30 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: GrabBike SGD 0.70/km | Bus ride SGD 0.50


2. Chiang Mai, Thailand | SGD 37/day

Chiang Mai is a city in northern Thailand that is well-known for its stunning mountainous landscape and temples. It was the capital city of a Buddhist kingdom called Lan Na Kingdom back in the 13th century. There are so many tourist attractions in Chiang Mai, including Doi Suthep-Pui National Park, Wat Chedi Luang, Chiang Mai Night Safari, Elephant Nature Park, and many other interesting places. There are more than 10 Halal restaurants in this city, one of them is Khao Soi Islam which serves the famous Khao Soi. Menus range from approximately SGD 1.5 to SGD 2.5.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 5.5 – SGD 15

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 8 – SGD 25 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 28 – SGD 50 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Rental (Best shared): Motorcycle SGD 12 | Car SGD 27 per-day / Tuk – tuk SGD 2.65 per-4km


3. Yogyakarta, Indonesia | SGD 35

the special region of Yogyakarta

Image Credit: Sendy Wulandhary from Pixabay 

The Special Region of Yogyakarta, also known as Jogja is the only region in Indonesia still ruled by a monarchy – the Yogyakarta Sultanate. Jogja is rich in Javanese culture and fine arts such as karawitan, batik, wayang puppetry, and traditional dances. There are plenty of things to do here including visiting Borobudur and Prambanan temple, learning batik making and gamelan, or visiting caves and beaches in Gunung Kidul. Furthermore, most of Yogyakarta’s food is Halal. One you should try is Gudeg which costs SGD 2.5. It is also easy to travel anywhere in Jogja by using Grab or Gojek.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 5 – SGD 18

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 9 – SGD 15 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 22 – SGD 35 (some include breakfast) 

Transportation: GrabBike or Gojek Motorcycle SGD 0.30 per-km / Rental (Best shared): Motorcycle SGD 8.5 / Car SGD 45


4. Siem Reap, Cambodia | SGD 30

Siem Reap city in the northwest part of Cambodia where the famous Angkor Wat is situated. It is the heritage of the Khmer Kingdom and was built by King Suryavarman II. Other than Angkor Wat, you can also visit Phnom Kulen National Park and see the Phnom Kulen waterfall. For some good Halal food, head to the Muslim Family Kitchen on LouTeuk Street Saouy Krong Siem Reap. You can get a plate of fried rice for SGD 2.65.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 6.5 – SGD 13

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 4.5 – SGD 12 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 25 – SGD 45 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Rental (Best shared): Motorcycle SGD 11 / Tuk-tuk minimum fare SGD 2


5. Kodaikanal, India | SGD 40

Kodaikanal is home to waterfalls, lakes, and phenomenal views. This hidden gem is located in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Here, you can see and even explore another face of India, where the scenery is green and the air is cool. Forget hustle and bustle, relax at Kodaikanal, India. Also, make sure to spoil your taste buds with their vegetarian curry!

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 7 – SGD 13

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 13 – SGD 25 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 40 – SGD 60 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Taxi SGD 2.5 is the minimum fare / Rent a bike SGD 1.80 per day


6. Kathmandu, Nepal | SGD 30

Kathmandu in Nepal

Image Credit: Lindrik on iStock

Kathmandu - Nepal’s capital city is surrounded by Himalayan mountains. In Kathmandu, you will find various marvelous temples such as Pashupatinath Temple and Boudha Stupa. You can also explore Kathmandu Durbar Square is a historical royal complex that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Upon visiting Kathmandu, it would be a waste of a trip if you missed the famous valley trekking tour. I mean, just imagine the phenomenal view from the Himalayas!

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 7 – SGD 12

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 7 – SGD 11 | Homestays SGD 20 – SGD 45 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Taxi SGD 0.2 is the minimum fare. Yes, it is unbelievably cheap!


7. Cappadocia, Turkey | SGD 42

This historical region is well-known for its cave dwellings, remarkable scenery, and rock formations. Furthermore, you might know Cappadocia if you’ve seen panoramic views of hundreds of hot air balloons while scrolling through your Instagram feed. Well, 2021 could be a perfect time for you to go there to witness the views for yourself with your besties or partner. Also, do try to explore Cappadocia’s various valley trails to enjoy a literal open-air museum and take some amazing photos.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 7 – SGD 13

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 11 – SGD 15 | Homestays SGD 35 – SGD 70, try the experience of staying at cave hostels and hotels (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Minibus ride approx. SGD 2 / Hop on a day tour SGD 106


8. Fez, Morocco | SGD 45

Fez, Morocco

Image Credit: Chronis Yan on Unsplash

Fez, also known as Fes is a city in northeastern Morocco with medieval Marinid architecture. Interesting things to do in Fez include exploring the ancient Medina and taking a symbolic walk through the Blue Gate, or savor the famous Moroccan couscous and chicken tagine. Window shopping at the leather tanneries souks in Fez is also fun, but remember, try not to get caught up in the seduction of sellers who sell items at high prices if you are traveling on a tight budget!

Check out more things to do in Fez, Morocco in our Local's Guide: Best Things to Do in Fes article!

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 13 – SGD 28

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 12 – SGD 30 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 35 – SGD 62 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: Bus ride SGD 0.30 / Taxi minimum fare SGD 3


9. Cairo, Egypt | SGD 38

Who would have thought that Cairo, Egypt would be included in the list of cheapest cities to explore in 2021? Honestly, I was also surprised. Cairo is one of the notable historical places that cannot be separated from the story of Islam. There lies the river Nile and an incredible view of the Egyptian desert. Other than that, there are some of the most famous remnants of Ancient Egypt like the Pyramids of Giza and Salah Al-Din Al-Ayoubi Castle, Salah Salem. You can also admire historical relics from Ancient Egypt including the coffins and mummies at The Egyptian Museum.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 12 – SGD 28

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 9 – SGD 13 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 25 – SGD 40 (some include breakfast) 

Transportation: Bus ride SGD 0.30 – SGD 0.45 / Metro train SGD 0.30 / Uber minimum fare SGD 1. Seriously!


10. Budapest, Hungary | 45 SGD

Budapest, Hungary

Image Credit: Bence Balla-Schottner on Unsplash

Parted by the River Danube, this exceptional-looking city is known for its thermal springs that have been used for therapeutic purposes since prehistoric times. Budapest has one of the world’s most amazing architectural designs. Witness and take photos of their splendid architectural designs when visiting Buda Castle, Hungarian Parliament Building, Fisherman's Bastion, Széchenyi Chain Bridge, and St. Stephen's Basilica. Try out their tasty cuisines like Fisherman's soup which is made of fish, paprika, and vegetables.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 22 – SGD 40

Accommodation: Hostels SGD 12 – SGD 25 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 25 – SGD 40 (some include breakfast)

Transportation: BuBi Bike Sharing SGD 2.5 per day / Single fare public transportation (Bus, Trolley, Tram, Subway) SGD 2, free for 65+ years olds. / Taxi minimum fare SGD 3


11. Transylvania, Romania | SGD 50

You might know Transylvania from the movie Hotel Transylvania. Sure enough, this place is a medieval city that is tied with the legends of Dracula! In Transylvania, you can see some of the famous Gothic castles such as Bran Castle and Corvins' Castle. While there, you should explore and enjoy the views on Bâlea Lake and the Red Lake. People also enjoy skiing in Transylvania… maybe Dracula too.

Estimated budget per-day

Food: SGD 17 – SGD 35

Accommodation: Hostels approx. SGD 19 | 2/3-star Hotels SGD 40 – SGD 60 (some include breakfast) 

Transportation: Tours SGD 13.5/pax / Taxi minimum fare SGD 3.5

Those are the 11 places we recommend from around the world if you want to travel on a tight budget in 2021. Have you found a suitable destination for traveling in 2021? Tell us about it in the comments section!

We all agree that 2020 has been a long year. It certainly has not been easy to adapt to and comply with all the regulations during this COVID-19 pandemic, especially for us outdoor enthusiasts and travelers. However, we must be grateful for the gift of health that Allah SWT has given us throughout the year, Alhamdulillah.

See you in 2021!

Bella enjoys sipping on hot soy latte while writing. Through Halaltrip, she communicates her love for travelling.

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