Sunday, July 1, 2018

Itinerary and Expenses : 24 Days in Latin America [Colombia, Cuba, Mexico, Bolivia, Peru]

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It was in December 2017 when I chanced upon a post in the DIY Travel Philippines facebook group about a Turkish Airlines promo. I immediately opened Turkish Airlines website to check if it's real. It was, so I did not have second thoughts and booked a ticket to Bogota, Colombia right then and there. I started planning my trip with several changes in the itinerary.  I left Davao on May 2, 2018 and began my dream trip to Latin America. Below is my Latin America Itinerary and Expenses.



Day 0 - Davao to Istanbul
  • Fly from Davao to Manila via Philippines AirAsia (complimentary ticket I won in an event)
  • Transferred from NAIA 4 to NAIA 3 to have lunch (free airport transfer, just show your onward boarding pass)
  • Fly from Manila to Istanbul [connecting flight, 20 hours layover] Php20,340 return ticket, promo fare bought on December 2017.
  • Lunch at Turcuisine inside Istanbul Airport Php1,500. I later found out that if you have more than 10 hours layover you can get a complimentary meal voucher from Turkish Airlines you can use at the airport's food court.
  • Coffee Php300. The main reason we had coffee was to get a free wifi. Istanbul airport's free wifi is only good for two hours.
  • Dinner at Istanbul Airport Php500

Day 1 : Arrival in Bogota [Read : The Road to Latin America : An Intro to Our Adventure in Bogota + Expenses]
  • Uber from Airport to Botanico Hostel Php500/2. Uber is not completely legal in Bogota so we had to go to the car park since the Uber driver cannot pick us up at the arrival area. Parking C is just in front of the arrival doors. Wifi is available in the airport so you can book your Uber.
  • Dinner Php364. I had Ajiaco and wine. Ajiaco is a Colombian dish basically made of potato.
  • Water Php20
  • Hostel Php640

Day 2 : Bogota
  • Hostel Php640. Breakfast is complimentary.
  • Lunch at El Enviganeo Php490. I had a local dish called bandeja paisa. Huge serving good for 2-3 people. 
  • Lemonade Php55
  • Taxi to Monserrate from the restaurant Php90/2. Monserrate is where you get an overlooking view of Bogota.
  • Cable car to the viewing deck Php365. We opted to take the cable car instead of taking the Funicular, a less expensive way of going up. Visitors can also use the stairs to go up but there are cases of robbery in the area, so use the stairs with caution. 
  • Water Php20
  • Taxi from Monserrate to Botanico Hostel Php180/2

Day 3 : Bogota to Havana [Read: First Time in CUBA : A Tale of A Filipino Travel Blogger]
  • Lunch at La Puerta Falsa Php273. Tried their famous tamales and chocolate completo (milk chocolate with cheese).
  • Uber from Botanico Hostel to Airport Php475
  • Check in fine Php910. I did not read the fine print (my fault) so I had to pay extra to check in at the airport counter. If you fly with Wingo, you must check in online to avoid paying extra.
  • Water Php40
  • Flight ticket from Bogota to Havana via Wingo (budget airline) Php7,360. Their staff at the check in counter, boarding gate and flight attendants barely speak English so be prepared if you don't speak Spanish.
  • Cuba Tourist Card Pho1,000. Most nationality including Filipinos do not require visa in advance. All you need is to purchase a tarjeta de turista (tourist card) at the airport of your departure (with direct flight to Cuba).
  • Taxi from Havana Airport to my Casa Particular (AirBnB) Php1,600. The usual fare is around Php1,300 but I arranged my transportation in advance from my host. I don't want to get lost in Havana so it's better to pay a little bit more.
  • Room in casa paricular Php4,702 for 3 nights.

Day 4 : Varadero, Cuba [Read: A Taste of the Caribbean in Varadero, Cuba]
  • Taxi from Casa particular to Viazul bus terminal Php500. It's a 20 minutes ride. I highly suggest you buy your bus ticket online in advance. If you don't have a ticket, you need to go to the bus terminal early just like I did to get a seat.
  • Water at the bus terminal Php50
  • Bus fare from Havana to Varadero Php500. It's a 3-hour journey with a CR and snacks stop.
  • Lunch Php175
  • Snacks Php125
  • Bus from Varadero back to Havana Php500. I only stayed in Varedor for about 3 hours. I wanted to stay longer but I had to go back to Havana. If you have time, I highly recommend staying a night or two in Varadero.
  • Dinner Php450
  • Internet Card Php500. I bought 5 cards (1 hour each) in Hotel Deauville Habana at Php100 per piece. If you buy from ETECSA, itwill only cost Php75 but be prepared for a long queue.

Day 5 : Celebrating my Birthday in Havana
  • Breakfast prepared by my host Php250
  • Lunch Php250
  • Tour around Havana with a 1953 Chevrolet convertible Php1,600. It's a 20-minute tour around the popular sites of Havana including the Revolution Square.
  • Dinner Php500

Day 6 : Havana to Cancun [Read: Cancun : A Beach Paradise in Mexico]
  • Taxi from casa particular to Havana Airport Php1,300
  • Pasalubong Php1,000
  • Snacks Php300
  • Plane fare from Havana to Cancun via Interjet Php7,500
  • Private car from Cancun Airport to Ibis Hotel Cancun Centro Php1,340. Uber has stopped operaring in Cancun late last year. There are no regular taxis so I had to hire a private car to my hotel. Another option to save money is to take a bus to downtown Cancun and take a taxi from there to your hotel.
  • Hotel Php2,940
  • Lunch Php110
  • Bus from hotel to Zona Hotelera and back Php65
  • Taxi to hotel (I got lost) Php94
  • Grocery Php400
  • Dinner Php193

Day 7 : Exploring Chichen Itza [Read: What to See from Chichen Itza,  Vestige of the Ancient Maya]
  • Chichen Itza Day Tour booked via GetYourGuide (Chichen Itza, Cenote Swim and Lunch) - Php3,500
  • Water from the restaurant Php94
  • Lemonade Php113
  • Guide tip Php135
  • Ibis Hotel Php2,940

Day 8 : Cancun to Mexico City [Read: First time in MEXICO : Itinerary, Expenses and Travel Tips]
  • Taxi from hotel to Cancun Airport Php670
  • Lunch at the airport Php477
  • Plane fare from Cancun to Mexico City via Interjet Php4,800. I actually like Interjet. It has a wide legroom and it offers snacks as well. Pretty cheap compared to the full service airlines in Latin America.
  • Uber from Cancun airport to to Hotel El Salvador Php345
  • Hotel El Salvador Php1,610. It is situated within the Mexico's historic center. Book now!
  • Dinner at Restaurante El Cardenal, a top rated restaurant in Mexico Php1,045

Day 9 : Lazing in Mexico City
  • Breakfast Php158
  • Lunch Php140
  • Laundry Php255
  • Dinner Php536
  • Hotel Php1,610

Day 10 : Mexico City by Turibus [Read: Turibus Mexico: How to Explore Mexico City by Turibus]
  • Uber from hotel to Turibus stop Php126
  • Turibus 1 day ticket PhpPhp482. A bus tour (double-decker) around Mexico City's attractions.
  • Lunch Php284
  • Water Php26
  • Postcards Php134
  • Starbucks tumbler Php510
  • Hotel Php1,610

Day 11 : Mexico to Lima
  • Uber from El Salvador Hotel to Mexico City Airport Php355
  • Snacks Php440
  • Ref Magnets from the airport Php430
  • Plane fare from Mexico City to Lima via Interjet Php13,333
  • Dinner at Lima Airport Php293
  • Water Php80
  • Plane fare from Lima to La Paz via Peruvian Air Php7,075
  • Taxi from La Paz Airport to Host San Sebastian Php385
  • Host San Sebastian Hostel Php810. It's located in El Alto. Book now!
  • Collectivo (communal taxi) from hostel to La Paz city proper Php27. It's a 20 minutes ride.
  • Postcards Php62
  • Ref magnets Php154
  • Lunch (lomo saltado) Php230
  • Taxi to Plaza Espana Php115 for about 30 minutes.
  • Cable car from city proper to El Alto (yello line) Php23
  • Water Php54
  • Taxi from hostel to Todo Turismo office Php230 for 35 minutes
  • Overnight bus from La Paz to Uyuni Php2,076. It's highly recommended that you book in advance.

Day 13 : Exploring Salar de Uyuni [Read: Salar de Uyuni : Heaven's Mirror on Earth]
  • Coffee Php77
  • Salar de Uyuni Tour Php3,940, booked via GetYourGuide.
  • Entrance fee to Incahuasi Island Php230
  • Guide tip Php385
  • Airport tax Php85
  • Plane fare from Uyuni back to La Paz via Amaszonas Php4,000
  • Hotel in La Paz Php810

Day 14 : La Paz to Copacabana to Puno [Read: Copacabana to Isla del Sol : Pilgrimage to the Ancient Inca Holy Site]
  • Taxi from hostel to Adventure Brew for Bolivia Hop bus pick up Php230. Bolivia Hop only picks up from hotel/hostel within the city proper.
  • Bolivia Hop Php2,885. It covers my bus trip from La Paz to Copacabana to Puno adn to Cusco.
  • Breakfast Php308
  • Lunch Php193
  • Isla del Sol Tour Php540
  • Hostel in Puno Php535
  • DinnerPhp260

Day 15 : Puno, Peru [Read: Lake Titicaca : A Full Day Itinerary]
  • Lake Titicaca Full Day tour (including lunch) Php1,020
  • Traditional boat ride in Uros Php162
  • Dinner Php245

Day 16 : Cusco, Peru [Read: Cusco : A UNESCO World Heritage Site]
  • Breakfast complimentary at Marriott El Cnovento Hotel Cusco
  • Lunch Php260
  • Dinner Php730
  • Taxi rental around Cusco Php1,465/3. We visited Tambomachay, Pucapucara, Saqsayhuaman and Qenqo)
  • General tourism admission ticket (Cusco attractions, sacred valley and museums) Php2,110
  • Hotel Tupac Yupanqui Php4,270/3. Originally from Php6,400 but I asked for a discount since we are staying for 4 nights.
  • Grocery Php488
  • Poncho + hat Php1,463

Day 17 : Sacred Valley of the Incas [Read: A Visit to the Sacred Valley of the Incas]
  • Sacred Valley Tour Php1,137 (includes lunch). We visited Chinchinero, Ollantaytambo, Moray, Pisac and Salineras de Maras.
  • Hat Php245
  • Dinner Php292
  • Hotel Tupac Yupanqui Php4,270/3

Day 18 : Lake Humantay
  • Lake Humantay Tour Php1,137 (includes lunch)
  • Water Php80
  • Entrance to the lake Php163
  • Horse rental Php810
  • Dinner Php520
  • Grocery Php230
  • Hotel Tupac Yupanqui Php4,270/3

  • Machu Picchu Tour from Cusco (includes lunch, dinner, first class train from Ollantaytambo to Aguas Calientes and back) Php12,790
  • Sweat shirt made from Alpaca hair Php570
  • Ref magnets Php325
  • Hotel Tupac Yupanqui Php4,270/3

Day 20 : Rainbow Mountain [ Read: Vinicunca Rainbow Mountain]
  • Rainbow Mountain Tour Php1,300 (includes lunch and breakfast)
  • Entrance to Rainbow Mountain Php163
  • Horse rental Php1,462
  • Dinner Php910
  • Hotel Tupac Yupanqui Php4,270/3

  • Private car from Hotel to Airport Php1950/5
  • Plane fare from Cusco to Lima via Peruvian Air Php4,275
  • Private car from Lima Airport to Westin Hotel Php2,356/3
  • Hotel at Westin Lima Php15,900/3
  • Taxi from hotel to Larcomar Php245/3
  • Grocery Php975
  • Starbucks tumbler Php650
  • Midnight snack Php260

Day 22 : Lima to Bogota
  • Breakfast in Lima Php325
  • Taxi from Westin Hotel to Lima Airport Php585
  • Plane fare from Lima to Bogota via Viva Air (budget airline) Php6,775. You must check in online and must print your boarding pass to avoid extra charges at the airport.
  • Uber from Bogota airport to Hotel Ambar Php455
  • Grocery and Pasalubong Php1,712
  • Dinner Php437
  • Ambar Hotel Php1,350. The hotel is a walking distance to Plaza de Bolivar and the Gold Museum. Book now!

Day 23 : Bogota
  • Uber from Ambar hotel to the market Php102. I wanted to see the flower market but I was already late. 
  • Grocery and Pasalubong Php1,385
  • Lunch Php365
  • Snacks Php20
  • Ambar Hotel Php1,350. 

Day 24 : Bogota to Istanbul
  • Uber from hotel to Airport Php420
  • Starbucks Mug from the airport Php910
  • Pasalubong Php2,295

Day 25 : Istanbul Airport
  • Pasalubong Php3,680. I bought turkish delights and boxes of premium baklava
  • Perfume Php1,870. Lacoste Essential was on sale. Can't resist it. Hahaha
  • Lunch (complimentary from Turkish Airlines)
  • Dinner Php375

Total Cost of Travel, 24 Days in Latin America plus travel expenses from Davao, Philippines to Bogota, Colombia and back to Manila, Philippines.

  • Colombia including airfare from Manila Php34,950
  • Cuba Php15,256
  • Mexico Php35,236
  • Bolivia Php38,745
  • Peru Php50,675
  • Colombia to Istanbul Php23,478
Total travel cost from Davao to Latin America and back to Manila: Php198,340.00

Travel Notes:
  • I could have reduced my travel expenses if I stayed in a dorm type accommodation all throughout my trip. I only stayed in a dorm for 2 nights in Bogota.
  • I could have saved if I used public shared transport. I pretty much used taxis and uber during my trip.