Food and Accommodation in Bangkok on a Budget (<$25)

#1 Bangkok overview

Wat Pho Temple in Bangkok
Wat Pho Temple in Bangkok

 

  • It is a buzzing, exotic and humid capital city of Thailand.
  • Well-known for its dynamism, amazing Thai food and friendly locals who keep smiling to you.
  • Surrounded by countless Buddhist temples and monuments.
  • It’s a city with infinite layers and hidden secrets and beauty.
  • Most common spots in Bangkok are Damnoen Floating Market, Suan Luang Rama IX, Bangkok Temples (Temple of Emerald Buddha, Wat Pho, Wat Sutat, Wat Arun), Air Force Museum and Dream World.
  • Postcards from Bangkok

#2 Highs and Lows

 Things we liked:

1) Food everywhere – there was never a problem to grab either a quick snack (a bag of tropical fruits for 30 Baht) or a decent plate of Pad Thai (30 Baht for  small portion with egg).

Pad Thai
Egg and chicken Pad Thai

 

*Pad Thai  is a dish of stir-fried rice noodles with eggs/ chicken/ shrimp or fish with some tamarind juice, red chili pepper garnished with crushed peanuts, garlic, chives, pickled turnip, coriander, lime, spicy chili oil, chili powder, vinegar, fish sauce, sugar.

Fresh pineapple
Fresh chopped pineapple

 

2) Cheap prices – Bangkok as a capital city of Thailand was cheaper than busy Thai islands in terms of food and accommodation.

3) Friendly locals – people kept smiling to us, helped us find the right way when we got lost, they often spoke to us in English.

Thai lady smiling
The Thai lady we met in China Town

 

4) Weather – the weather in Bangkok was perfect for us – not too hot and not too humid. We didn’t sweat that much either.

Things we didn’t like:

 1) Too busy Khaosan Road– there were so many people drinking, partying and doing some shopping so it was difficult even to pass by the road without pushing people.

Khao San Road at night
Busy Khao San Road at night

 

2) The chaos on Bangkok’s roads

3) Pushy salesman on Khaosan Road– we kept hearing “Do you want a nice suit?”, “Do you want a tuk tuk?”, “Where are you going sir?” and so on. It’s ok when someone asks you these questions once, but when you hear it 100 times a day, it starts to be frustrating

4) Popular scams- we were not victims, but it was easy to notice that some people simply wanted to scam us and other foreigners. For example a promised “2 hour tuk tuk ride for 5 Baht” cannot be true. Same goes for Ping pong shows, which as we heard, end up with your wallet empty.

Bangkok Roads
Bangkok Roads

 

#3 Budget details

Budget: Less than $25 per person

Currency: Baht (US$1 = 30 Baht)

Time required: minimum 1 day

Minimum number of people: 1

Our expenses

Accommodation: 150-200 Baht per night for two ($5-$7)

Food:  200-300 Baht ($7-$10)

Transport: 15-60 Baht ($2)

Activities: Walking tour around the city

Total: Less than $25

 

# 4 Where to sleep

There are plenty of accommodation options to choose from, from couchsurfing with the many hospitable locals and expats, through cheap hostels, to occasional budget hotel, you won’t need to win a lottery to sleep well.

Budget Guest House
Our room in 7 Holder Guest House

 

1) Type of accommodation: Budget Guest House called 7 Holder Guest House

 Address: 216/2-3 Khaosan Rd., Banglumpoo Bkk 10200, tel.: 6622813682

 Price: 250 Baht per double room or 300 Baht for 3 people in a double room

Pros: Cheap price

Cons: No wi-fi, expensive Internet access (3 Baht per 1 minute) and way too high printing service fees

 

#5 Where to eat

Spicy Thai salad with peanuts
Spicy Thai salad with peanuts

 

1) Food: street food

Location: Khaosan Road

Prices:

  • 30 Baht ($1) per small portion of Pad Thai with egg
  • 50 Baht for Pad Thai with chicken
  • 10 Baht per one spring roll
  • 30 Baht per any portion of tropical fruits
  • 150 Baht per 1 scorpion

 

Spring rolls
A plate of spring rolls
Thai soup
Thai soup for 30 Baht with fish balls and some pork

 

2) Food: Chinese food

Location: China Town, 526 Yaowaraj Road, Sumpuntawong

Things to know: Free entrance, there are many local restaurants around, but you can always eat from one of the street vendors

Prices: Between 10 Baht and 30 Baht per meal, fresh squeezed juice for 30 Baht per bottle (pomegranate was our favourite one)

China Town, Bangkok
Looking for some food in China Town
Fresh pomegranate juice in China Town
Fresh pomegranate juice, 30 Baht per bottle

 #6 Things to know and remember

  • Similarly to any other place you need to be careful. However, please be extra careful on or near to Khaosan Road where there’s a lot of tourists who may look to some local individuals as easy way to get rich quick.
  • With majority of visitors enjoying nightlife, it’s important to limit the drinking to an amount which will allow us to go back safely to hotel
  • Never, ever, ever… under any circumstances, do not get involved in anything to do with drugs. Thai law is very serious  about it and Thai police is known for not wanting to hear your explanation. If they find drugs in the backpack of a person you’re travelling with, you are as much in trouble as the other person. Also, a thug on the street who wants to sell you some weed may turn out to be a policeman in civies, you’re in trouble if you accept the offer. Bangkok is a place to stay away from drugs.

#7 Additional info

It’s hard to go to Bangkok and to go for a party. So we did! It was great, we met fantastic people and had quality time. Danced like crazy (mainly Cez) drunk a little (too much) and had blast (until 5 am). We don’t do partying much, but sometimes it’s worth to make an exception. Beers in bars and pubs cost normally 100 Baht and we have not drunk much (can’t tell you exactly, but still within the budget).

Party in Bangkok
Party time!

 

Bangkok is a massive city. Although this time we didn’t go too far away from Khaosan Road, there’s a lot more Bangkok has to offer. Don’t be shy, go explore and come back to share your experiences with us.

 

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36 Comments

    • That’s awesome. I bet you will love Pad Thai as much as I did and you will probably eat it all the time. The chicken one is the best. Our guesthouse was the cheapest one and we met fantastic people there, so you definitely need to stay there. Can’t wait for your adventures.

  • I agree! Very useful post for first visitors to Bangkok and even Thailand. Cannot stress point #6 enough! We’ve all seen Bridget Jones 2 right? :D
    All the best!

    • Cheers. To be honest, I’ve never seen Bridget Jones movie :-( but I’ll soon! I guess it’s related to drugs issue, right?

  • Glad to see you are still posting good information even though you are home for Holidays. My daughter and I will be starting our 14 month trip ATW trip next spring and will be in Ecuador May so we were glad you guys are going there next year. We are taking Spanish lessons in Canoa Ecuador then heading down the cost to southern tip. Both of us hope to see you and Cez on the road since we enjoy your blog so much. Good luck to you both.

    • That’s so lovely guys! Great plans. I used to study Spanish at the university, loved this language. Hope you are picking it up quickly. I’m working all the time no matter where I am and what I do (Cez as well). Blogging is our passion :). 14 months around the World? Sounds amazing. Maybe we can meet up one day during our travels. We will be travelling in South America next year visiting Eduador. Maybe you can give us some useful tips :).

      Stay safe!

  • Agness, yes it’s about the drug issue. Once you get behind bars there it’s hard to get out I hear. Lots of people tend to forget that as SE Asia is full of opium plantations and many people try. I met 2 travellers who were arrested in Laos by plain clothes policemen for smoking weed, and then they were offered either being transported to Vientiane for trial or paying $500US fine. Obviously they chose the latter.
    I think it’s so easy to forget about point 6 here when you’re travelling, having fun, meeting people etc.

    • Thanks for explaining that. Asia is by far the strictest continent when it comes to drug possessing and dealing. If you get caught with any kind of drugs, no matter if it’s soft or not, you will be taken to the prison straight away, you either pay a fine or even get a death penalty. We also met some travel fellows arrested for smoking weed. We stay away from this kind of doggy deals.

    • I always crave Thai food :) that’s my favourite food ever! Khao San is way too busy and pretty expensive but that’s the only one place in Bangkok where you can get good deals on accommodation :)

  • Great post, as always! Partner In Crime and I are hopefully heading to Bangkok on our next big teaching holiday… love that you’ve given us so many ideas of what to get up to!
    Definitely feeling hungry after checking out your food photos…I’m so excited to dig into the pad thai!

    • Cheers! Looking at photos of Thai food makes me so hungry, but I’m enjoying some Polish food right now, so it’s not too bad. You will love Bangkok, let us know when you get there, maybe we can meet up ;-)

  • Thanks for the wonderful tips and information for Travelling in Bangkok.I was planning to Study TESOL with my daughter in Bangkok Can you please inform me,anyone? Im on the tight budget, I only love adventure,to educate myself on many things like food etc.Some kind of business with pleasure.I love to discover things that I didnt know specially looking for what kind of business can I bring home or experimenting new street food and introduce here in my country coz I had a lot of interest of things I love to do.

    • What I would advise you to do is to do an online TESOL course and get a job as an English teacher in Bangkok or local towns/cities/villages. Check it out on the Internet. I don’t really know any websites or organisation as I’ve travelled in Thailand, never worked there.

    • I’m so glad Pedro you found it interesting and helpful. Enjoy your time in Thailand. I bet it’s gonna be awesome!

  • Good article! Will be in Bangkok for the first time in less than two weeks myself. I am sticking to around $25/day for most of my travels as well. Is it necessary to plan anything out? Can I simply take the rail from BKK into the city center and be able to find everything within budget, or is the cheap stuff hard to find just by walking around? Thanks for the advice and I appreciate all the work you put into this blog!

    • Yes, take the local train from the airport and get to Khao San road, it’s gonna take you some time. When it gets busy in the afternoon it might take up to 2 hours :-/, but you can admire the beauty of Thailand through the window. Once you get to Khao San road you might take a walk around the street and ask for prices and available rooms. I am sure you will find something affordable!

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