What Did I Eat??
In Paris, food can be very expensive at restaurants! Be ready to pay at least 10-12€ ($11-$13) per meal plus a 5€ ($6) bottle of Coca Cola! I was in shock when I saw the price of a Coke at a restaurant (and for my American readers, there are no free refills!!)
But like most travelers, I’m on a budget. I can’t eat out every day for 12€ each meal. For my four-day stay in Paris, if I only ate lunch and dinner, I would have spent 72€ ($81) just for food!
So, how was I able to eat breakfast, lunch, AND dinner, but only spend under $40 in four days on food?? I kept track of everything I bought to see how much I could save. Check it out below.
Arrived in the evening, so I ate dinner at McDonald’s for 8.30€. I found this expensive for McDonald’s since I only ordered a burger, fries, and bottled water. I knew I could eat cheaper than that.
I went to a supermarket called “Carre Four” where I bought 3 bananas, 2 apples, Spanish ham, tomatoes, and a liter of water. It was only 6.35€ (Cheaper than my meal at McDonald’s).
I used the bananas and apples for breakfast for the remaining time in Paris. For lunch, I ate the Spanish ham with tomatoes. It’s amazing by the way! You can put in on bread as well, but I have celiacs disease so I had to skip the bread!
For dinner, I went to a supermarket called “My Auchan” and bought a chicken thigh with potatoes, water, and a bag of chips for 4€.
For breakfast, I ate a banana that was bought on Day 2.
For lunch, I went to a supermarket called “FranPrix” and bought a salad and a Coca Cola for 8€. I also ate some chips that I bought from Day 2.
For dinner, I bought two chicken thighs with potatoes and a Pepsi for 5.35€ from My Auchan.
For breakfast, I ate a banana and an apple that was bought on Day 2.
For lunch, I ate a chicken thigh and potatoes for 2.49€.
I left Paris in the evening, so I didn’t eat dinner in Paris!
TOTAL SPENT for 3 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, and 3 Dinners = 34.49€ = $38.77!
This equals an average of $4.30 per meal, which is three times less than the average price per meal at a restaurant in Paris ($12)!
Yes, I Did Eat Chicken and Potatoes Three Days in a Row
I am not a picky person when it comes to food. I don’t mind eating the same thing three nights in a row if I really like it. Additionally, as mentioned above, I have celiac’s disease, so I have a limited choice of food. The chicken and potatoes I ate were ready to eat and best of all, cheap!
If you are a person who doesn’t like eating the same thing over and over, there are many options! You could pack sandwiches, fruit, and chips to take with you for lunch on the go. You could get a frozen pizza to make at your hostel or Airbnb for dinner. You could buy pasta to make. The list goes on!
You Don’t Need To Eat Out Every Meal
The reason I challenged myself to do this sort of thing is to show how cheaply you can travel. I hate the excuse that traveling is too expensive, so I wanted to show a way to reduce your costs! Don’t get me wrong, I love eating at restaurants, but if you want to truly travel cheap, you cannot eat out every single night!! I cut my food costs in HALF just by choosing to not eat at restaurants (besides McDonald’s once).
The money you save could be used for another experience in the place you are visiting, or, if you’re like me, it could go towards your next trip!! I could probably eat even cheaper, so next time, I will try to eat for even less!!
I challenge you to EAT CHEAP to see for yourself how much money you can save! Can you eat for under $40?? Can you eat for even less? Let me know in the comments or reach out to me on Instagram @sarahsplanet_
Traveling the world doesn’t have to be expensive!!