Spreadsheeting: How Much I Spent in Jordan

Jordan is one of those surprisingly and shockingly expensive countries. It’s one that you’d expect to be quite cheap and then WOAH just kidding. It’s not.

I think part of what makes a country cheap for travel is the internal infrastructure for transportation – and in Jordan, there is not a cheap option for getting around. If you want to rent a car, it seems quite safe. I didn’t have the guts to do that. So if you don’t, you’re relying on either a guide or a taxi – both of which know that tourists have to get places and have to pay – so they charge accordingly.

I decided to get a private guide for Jordan – I thought the best/fastest way to save money would be to do the country quickly and with a guide, and I think I was right.

In four days, I spent $1,130.15. (ouch)

How did that work out?

Airfare: $298.90
This was another of the last big hops around – getting from New Delhi to Jordan isn’t cheap. (Getting from New Delhi to anywhere does not appear to be cheap.) After this, I only have flights from Egypt to Europe, any internal Europe flights, and then my flight home! So the bulk of flight expenses are now behind me.

Visa: $70.49
Jordanian visas are $56 on arrival, though you can get them as a part of the Jordan Pass – that’s what I did, but I decided to take the cost of the visa out of that as I budget for visas separately. You also have to pay a $14.49 departure tax when you leave.

Accommodations and Transportation: $594.20
This was what I paid my tour guide and included him picking me up from the airport, taking me to the Dead Sea, then to Petra, two nights hotel (breakfast/lunch/dinner included), a night glamping in Wadi Rum and a sunrise camel ride, and then the ride to Aqaba. All in all, I don’t think it was a terrible price. I know I would have paid more trying to get all of that separately and had a lot more stress negotiating with individual cabbies.

Activities: $121.05
This includes my tickets for Petra (so the remaining part of the Jordan Pass taking out $56 for the visa), my Petra by Night ticket, and the Dead Sea entrance/lunch. I feel like the Jordan Pass is actually a huge advantage for making Jordan more affordable – and the tourism board selling it is doing something smart. For the Jordan Pass to include your visa, you have to stay at least three nights in the country. Thus they make it easier and cheaper to stay a bit longer and see a bit more of the country.

Food: $42.61
This was mostly water and snacks (and ice cream at the Movenpick!). Most of my main meals were included in the tour I paid for, which was nice!

Souvenirs: $2.90
This was a stone camel for my “stone things from the world wonders” collection.


Ultimately, it came out to an average of about $278.56 per day. I targeted my non-flight/visa costs to be under $200/day, and came in at $193.79. (My flight/visa comes out of a separate visa, so when I budget per country per day it’s without those included.)

It’s still high and a shock from some countries I’ve visited! Funny enough, Egypt, Jordan, and India are the three I’ve budgeted the most per day in. Countries you’d think would be cheap… but alas, I’m paying for my perceived security! (And I like to believe it’s paying for actual security too!)

I really loved Jordan and would definitely come back. Now that I’ve been here, I know that I would be very comfortable renting a car here, so next time my expenses there would be far lower! I also would want to try more trekking and camping, as there seems to be no shortage of amazing places to do that. However… maybe not in the middle of the summer next time.

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