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How To Travel Around Chiang Mai, Thailand, for $47 a Day

Chiang Mai Travel
by Jori Ayers Dec 5, 2023

For anyone who has traveled abroad recently, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that traveling outside the country can sometimes be cheaper than traveling within the States. One of the places that’s true is in Thailand. Currently, $1 is worth roughly 35 Thai baht. Back here in the States, that wouldn’t even get me a pack of gum, but in Chiang Mai, that can get you a motorcycle taxi ride. If you’re traveling to Chiang Mai, Thailand, here is what you could spend a day in Chiang Mai.

Here’s what it costs to spend a day exploring Chiang Mai.

For a private taxi from the airport to the hotel (rideshare services like Uber and Lyft aren’t as widely used), costs about 150 baht (about $4). You don’t have to stay in a hostel to stay on a budget. For example, the three-star Moondragon Hotel costs 750 baht per night (about $20).

Food is another area where budget wins out. And budget doesn’t have to mean typical fast food that is considered cheap in the States. Market stalls and food cooked right in front of you is often even cheaper. Depending on the market that you go to, there are many options to choose from like noodles, dumplings, and other street food snacks sold for around 145 baht (about $4). You won’t be gouged for drinks here, either, with fresh coconut water and other beverages sold for a couple dollars at most as well.

After a long day of traveling, there’s nothing like a relaxing massage. For 300 baht per hour (about $8), you can get a traditional Thai massage. After a day of being out in Chiang Mai, a 10-minute motorcycle taxi to the night market for dinner can cost as little as 46 baht (about $1). Night markets are places where you can gorge on delicious Thai meals for 185 baht (about $5) and end your night out with another motorcycle taxi back to your hotel.

Clearly, going to Thailand on a budget doesn’t mean limiting yourself on great food, trusty accommodations, and wide-spanning exploration. One day only costs about 1,615 baht, or about $47.

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