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Budget travel

I am thinking of traveling to Vienna and Salzburg in late March. I have found good air rates and hotel rates. I would like to plan how much to spend on food and other expenses. I plan to eat a main meal at lunch and would like to be as frugal as I can. Ideas for a realistic daily budget? Planning on 5 days in Vienna and 4 in Salzburg with some day trips.

Posted by
7196 posts

$40 to $50 a day. It depends on what you are paying to see or do each day.
Go to grocery store and make a picnic somewhere saves money

Posted by
2526 posts

If breakfasts are included in your accommodations, gorge. If coffee is a requirement, fill up then as well.

Posted by
21086 posts

"Other expenses" can be fairly substantial if they include your transportation costs between Vienna and Salzburg and for your day trips. You can check fares on the [ÖBB website][1], but understand that they may increase substantially if you wait until you arrive in Austria to buy the tickets. You can price your planned trips for the actual anticipated travel dates as well as for today or tomorrow and note the fare variation. You may want to buy the highly variable tickets soon even though the bargain tickets (if any remain) will be non-changeable and non-refundable.

Posted by
29 posts

I usually plans my trips $ 125.00 per person per day that includes everything except air travel .
Hotels , transportation ,entertainment ,groceries, wine, 3 meals per day ,limited shopping and extras as needed. This is only my planning method ,it can be done cheaper .Most trip I stay under my planning amount and never go over .

Posted by
6488 posts

My daily expenses for food, transportation, admissions, and misc are about the same as jazz+travels, $40-50. That's an average but it can run anywhere from $20 for a relaxing day with a picnic lunch/dinner, sites with free admission, walking around taking photos, sitting in a cafe enjoying the people watching,etc. to $60-70 for a day trip by public transport and a site with high admission charge and a nice restaurant lunch/dinner.

Posted by
4267 posts

From Vienna to Salzburg you can purchase a saver train ticket well advance. The other option which for me that turned out to be about the same price, was a Westbahn train where you can by the tickets on the train. It was about 30euro. It is my understanding that those trains also now use the main train station as well as Westbahn. If breakfast is substantial, you may not be ready to eat until 1 or 2 and then I wouldn't think you'd need much for dinner. For dinners, I would scope out local grocery stores or markets and think about a roll or bread, cheese and or some kind of meat and fruit. You might think about purchases nuts or something for a protein snack that would "last" longer than carbs. In Vienna we found these amazing rolls with seeds on the outside, and then we noticed them in most bakeries in Austria, Switzerland and at least southern Germany. In Salzburg there seemed to be a daily market by the cathedral. If breakfast is included with your hotel rate, I think you could do food/drink in Vienna and Salzburg for 30-35 euro including market purchases. If you are under 25, look for student rates on trains and attractions. I don't recall that any of the lovely churches in Vienna or Salzburg charged any admission except perhaps to climb a tour. We went to the opera by queuing up for standing room seats. It was super cheap maybe 2 euro! We stayed for half, enjoyed the beautiful interior of the opera house and left. Use the RS guides for walking tours around each town. In Vienna, the National Library is absolutely beautiful. It is either free or has a small charge. We were able to walk everywhere in these cities, except from the airport, to Schonbrunn, or to go to sights outside of Vienna or Salzburg. I would also to make sure to treat yourself to fully enjoy those cities. I would be sure to stop at a coffee shop in Vienna.

Posted by
11289 posts

Remember that you have to eat wherever you are. Unlike your home rent or mortgage, which has to be paid on top of your hotel or other European accommodation, when you eat in Europe, you're not spending any other money for food at home. So, the only issue is, how much more will it cost to eat in Vienna and Salzburg than it does at home?

A lot of this depends on you. If you're going to more restaurants in Austria than you do at home, you'll pay more. Ditto if you eat at inexpensive restaurants at home but fancier ones in Austria. Conversely, if you get most of your meals from supermarkets, you'll save a lot compared with restaurants. (Supermarket prices for most items in Europe are roughly on par with the US, although there are, of course, some items that are much cheaper or much more expensive). Etc.

I find that I definitely eat out more when traveling than I do at home, so I do spend more on food. However, it's not that much more, particularly now that I've started getting some meals from supermarkets. They have all kinds of prepared items like sandwiches and soups, as well as things that are ready to eat like yogurt, trail mix, fruit, etc.

Posted by
1492 posts

There are several opportunities to get good but cheap food in Vienna. Some big supermarkets have restaurants, a lot of small traditional restaurants ("Beisel") have lunch specials, extra cheap are the restaurants inside the big furniture stores (e.g. XXXLutz).

If a buffet breakfast is included in your room rate just eat as much as you can.

Posted by
720 posts

There's a youth hostel in Salzburg that is inexpensive and within walking distance of the train station and the city sights. There is also a McDonald's on the castle side of the river,. You should be able to find it using Google maps. Also on that side is a grocery store that faces the river, but is set back aways due to a busy traffic area.

Posted by
11289 posts

Note that MacDonald's in Europe is often more expensive than MacDonald's in the US. It varies country to country, and I don't know about Austria, but sheerly from a cost perspective, there are usually better deals.

Posted by
4695 posts

McDonalds is pretty cheap eatin in Austria - similar to US prices but better quality. Similar would be Doner Kebab stands, Noodle stands and pizza stands. You can’t beat a sausage stand, though. All these places will get you fed for 3 Euro.

Posted by
845 posts

In Salzburg, instead of McDonalds, check out Burgerista. You can get a burger, fries and soda (with free refills) for 7.50€. And it’s a good burger. Kids meals are only 4.50€. It doesn’t hurt to ask if you can order a kids meal - it could save a lot.

We found street vendors to have reasonable prices (3-4 € for a slice of pizza, kebab, sausage). We often had one full meal at lunch and then snacked for dinner.

Grocery stores often have pre-made options at good prices. You can also save a lot by buying drinks there instead of from street vendors.

Posted by
52 posts

@Emily,

Can recommend any inexpensive restaurants or places to eat that carry gluten free vegetarian food?

Thank you!

Posted by
4695 posts

Daisydrum - I’d be happy to make recommendations if I knew which city you were wanting recommendations for. Please clarify.

Posted by
1492 posts

This is the most comprehensive restaurant directory:
https://www.falter.at/lokalfuehrer?r=Wien&k=Vegetarisch,%20vegan
It will show all places in Vienna offering vegetarian and/or vegan cuisine. Although it is in German, it is easily understandable. You can choose the type of place, alter the kind of cuisine, select other features, as well as the city borough. If you tick "Empfohlen" (recommended) the search is narrowed to somewhat renowned establishments.

Posted by
4695 posts

Vegiezz
Deewan
Turnhalle Brick 5
Swing Kitchen
Vegetasia
Veganista (ice cream)
Denn’s grocery
Yamm