One Week of Travel Spending

This is what I spent during one week of travel. My travel didn’t go exactly as planned . Two days before I was set to travel to Thailand to get some dental work done and visit my Thai girlfriend, the dentist contacted me and stated that my scheduled appointment dates would no longer work. They offered two new times for appointments and stated no other times would be available during the time of my Thailand trip. This led me to have to change my travel plans and cost me money in the form of two new airfares that had to be purchased. Also the new dates required me to make two trips to Pattaya while in Thailand when I previously could have gotten all the dental work done during one trip to Pattaya. This did not make me pleased with the dentist. I will be asking for a discount on the remaining dental work, but I doubt I will receive any compensation for my inconvenience and additional expense.

To make things worse one day before I was set to travel my girlfriend told me that she would not be able to visit me in Pattaya as planned. This didn’t cost me any additional money, but it did mean that the two air fares I had purchased for her would go unused and be a waste of money. This wasn’t a great start to the trip.

Sunday 9/29: The day started with a $1.50 bus ride to the airport to catch my Southwest flight from Kansas City to Chicago. This required taking two buses and quite a bit of time. While I was waiting to transfer to the second bus I realized I had forgotten my water bottle. I had time to walk over to Walmart and purchase a bottle of water for 50 cents. The second bus ended up being a half hour late. I had plenty of cushion built in to my arrival time at the airport. Still, I was about ready to call an Uber when the bus finally showed up.

Once I was in Chicago I needed to take the train to my hotel. This was a bit of journey because I landed at Midway airport and my hotel was near O’Hare since that was where I would be flying out of the next day to Bangkok. This required taking two trains. The total travel time was about an hour and a half. One ticket was good for both trains and cost $3.00. The train ride went smoothly. I did make a mistake in not using the bathroom while at the airport. I assumed there would be one at the train station and there was not. I really had to pee by the time I switched trains. After arriving at the second train stop I needed to take a city bus for $2.25 to travel the last mile to the hotel.

Before checking in to the hotel I bought a $3.33 McChicken meal from the McDonald’s across the street from the hotel. After a couple of hours of watching football I was hungry again. The snacks in the hotel snack bar were predictably overpriced so I ended up having another $3.33 meal from McDonald’s. I had a McDouble the second time to switch things up a little bit.

Total spent for the day: $12.41. That is a pretty low amount for transportation to and from the airport and two meals.

Monday 9/30: I try to eat light or not at all on days that I’m flying. My flight was at 12:55pm so I wanted to eat something before the flight. I bought a pack of mini-donuts for $1.50. That and water from my refilled water bottle was all I needed for the morning and kept me from spending any money on food or drink at the airport. I took a free shuttle from the hotel to the airport. The rest of the day was spent on the plane so I didn’t have an opportunity to spend more money.

Total spent for the day: $1.50

Tuesday 10/1: I was on a plane for most of the day which made it easy to not spend money. Arrived in Bangkok about 9:30pm and took a free shuttle to my hotel. Went to 7/11 to buy a cold bottle of water for twenty cents, then returned to the hotel and slept.

Total spent for the day: $0.20

Wednesday 10/2: This was a very lazy day. I woke up after just a few hours of sleep and was tired all day. Spent $2.02 for some snacks from 7/11 and some grilled meat from a street food vendor for breakfast. Spent $4.66 for more food from 7/11 for lunch and dinner. Spent $39.34 on airfare from Bangkok to Phitsanulok to see my girlfriend the following week.

Total spent for the day: $46.02

Thursday 10/3: Had a free breakfast at the hotel. Checked out at 11am and took the free hotel shuttle to the airport. Bought a bus ticket from the airport to Pattaya for $4.25. Once I arrived in Pattaya I took a mototaxi from the bus station to my hotel for $3.93. Had lunch at the McDonald’s in the mall across the street from my hotel for $4.55. I wasn’t very hungry in the evening. I bought 2 donuts for 65 cents from the Mr. Donut shop in the mall and called that dinner.

Total spent for the day: $13.38

Friday 10/4: I took a baht bus from near my hotel to the Terminal 21 mall. The Terminal 21 mall is an airport themed mall that is interesting to explore. I had a meal a Thai macaroni dish and a soda at the food court there for $1.80. After that I went to the movies and spent $13.12 for the ticket, a large popcorn (it would be a small popcorn at a U.S. Movie theater) , and a bottle of water. That is about what I would pay for a movie and a popcorn in the U.S., so it wasn’t that great of a bargain for me. After the movie I took the baht bus back to my hotel. The baht bus cost 66 cents round trip. During the afternoon I bought a plane ticket for $43.83 from Phitsanulok to Bangkok for the return portion of my trip to visit my girlfriend. In the evening I bought some snacks for $1.15 from 7-11.

Total spent for the day: $60.56

Saturday 10/5: Spent $4.57 for breakfast at Burger King. Spent $6.56 at Carl’s Jr. for lunch. I should really stop eating fast food all the time since it cost more than Thai food and is bad for me. I spent $7.32 at the grocery store in the mall for snacks. This wasn’t a frugal expenditure as approximately $5 of that total was for a bag of cheese curls. I crave my fast food and junk food too much. I broke my reading glasses and bought a replacement pair from the Daiso store in the mall for $1.97. I usually get my reading glasses from the dollar store. Although these glasses are still very cheap they seem to be better quality than the dollar store glasses. I bought a big pork pao for 92 cents from 7-11 for dinner.

Total spent for the day: $21.34

I ended up spending $155.41 for the week. The two plane tickets made up most of that total. I also paid $450 for my October rent and $19.89 for my Regal Unlimited monthly membership fee. I didn’t include those in the total since they had nothing to do with my travel. Spending almost all of one day on an airplane and crossing the international date line helped keep my expenses low. My hotel stays had already been paid using credit card points so there was no hotel expense.

If my girlfriend had joined me in Pattaya I would have spent more money since we probably would have visited some local attractions. My entertainment was mostly limited to free activities such as walking around the mall, walking along the beach, and swimming in the hotel pool. Since I’ve been to Pattaya before I didn’t feel a need to visit any attractions on this trip. The primary purpose for this trip is to finish my dental work and visit my girlfriend. If this trip were for entertainment I would have spent more, although probably not a lot more.

6 thoughts on “One Week of Travel Spending”

    • I’m estimating that I saved about $3k by having my implant done in Thailand. It cost me just under $1600 to get my implant and crown. It probably would have cost me at least $4500 to have the same done in the U.S. The cost savings from the dental work pretty much paid for my two trips to Thailand this year.


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