When planning any vacation, an important question is ‘how much will it cost?’ Luckily, Portugal is one of the least expensive countries in Western Europe to visit. Check out our cost breakdown to find out just how much you can expect to spend on your trip to Portugal.
When you travel and where you depart from will determine the cost of your airfare more than anything else. Flights will be more expensive during the height of the summer months, when everyone is heading to Portugal’s beautiful beaches. However, the weather in Portugal is usually temperate year-round. Try traveling in April or October for a cheaper flight without risking too much winter weather.
Portugal has lots of options for accommodations. If you’re on a budget, there are a lot of great hotels and hostels for as low as 10 Euros a night. However, if you’re after luxury, you’ll want to check out some of the more high-end hotels. These will run 100 Euros a night or more, depending on the quality and proximity to large cities.
As with flights, when you’re traveling will determine how easy it is for you to find cheap lodging. In the summer months, it’s likely a lot of hotels in all price ranges will be booked. If you do want to travel during these months, make sure you book well in advance.
Getting around in Portugal is fairly easy if you use public transportation. Lisbon and Porto both have underground metro systems, buses, trams, and funiculars. A day pass for the metro costs about 6 Euros. Other costs vary based on how far you want to travel, but average between 1 and 3 Euros per ride.
Additionally, both taxi systems and rideshare apps are active in Portugal. Costs are fairly comparable between the two. You can also get a cheap rental car for 13 to 20 Euros a day, if you don’t mind driving manual.
If you’re used to paying for expensive drinks at bars in America, be prepared for a shock. At Portuguese restaurants, you can get a beer or a glass of wine for as low as 1 Euro. Higher end wines can go up to around 5 Euros a glass, but most restaurants won’t charge much more than that.
As for food, it depends on where and what you buy. Main dishes in most restaurants can go as low as 2.5 Euros, or as high as 20 Euros. The biggest thing to keep in mind in Portugal is that nothing that lands on your table is free. If a waitress delivers bread or other small snacks to your table, you have to send it back or it will end up on your bill. Fortunately, these starters are usually between .5 and 1.5 Euros, so it won’t break the bank if you do want them.
Tipping is not expected in Portugal, like it usually is in the United States, but it is always appreciated. People in Portugal usually tip between 5 and 10%, or just round their bill up to an even amount. For example, an 8 Euro bill might be rounded up to 10, or a 32 Euro bill might become 35. However, you don’t have to tip at all, and people often don’t.
Museums, wine tastings, golf, ziplines… The activities start to add up fast in most places. In Portugal, however, you can count on low prices on most activities. Smaller museums, castles, and churches are usually free. The larger museums and castles still aren’t too expensive to visit, between 5 and 10 Euros per person, and children are free.
In the Algarve, you won’t want to miss out on some of the exciting watersports. Boat tours tend to run around 40 Euros per person for a 2+ hour trip. Jet skiing or scuba diving will cost about 100 Euros. Wakeboarding, water-sofa riding, and other similar activities will only cost about 20 Euros.
Golfing is another popular activity in Portugal, especially in the Algarve region. A full round of 18 holes will likely have a green fee of between 30 and 90 Euros, with additional fees for equipment rental.
If you’re in Northern Portugal, you won’t want to miss out on the opportunity to go wine tasting. A multi-vineyard wine tour, often with a cruise on the stunning Douro River, will cost between 90 and 120 Euros.
No matter how expensive your trip is, the cost of souvenirs to bring back for friends and family will always sneak up on you. In Portugal, however, you can usually get all your gifts without spending too much. Some of the best souvenirs to get in Portugal are made from cork. Portugal is known for producing a large amount of the world’s cork, so cork souvenirs are very common here. Other great gifts are adorned with the Barcelos Rooster, and everyone will love a nice bottle of wine or olive oil.