10 Best Budget Destinations

  • Bali, Indonesia

This is probably one of the biggest island in Indonesia and has many corners to explore with a little paradise for everyone. Uluwatu being the best for your laid back surfer life, Seminyak has some of the most amazing beaches with incredible sunsets, Kuta is where you will get the best nightlife and of course shopping. Then finally the famous Ubud which is probably why Bali is so popular today if you recall the book “Eat, Pray, Love” (the book is based on her stay in Ubud with it being cultural side of the whole island.)

Unfortunately there aren’t any direct flights from South Africa to Bali but the quickest route is flying via Singapore on Singapore airways. The duration of your flight from Johannesburg is approximately 14 Hours and from Singapore to Bali is an additional 2H30mins which is doable.

  • Sri Lanka, South-East Asia

Sri Lanka formerly known as Ceylon Island, is a rich and textured country with wild animals, hill-top temples and arguably the best food in the world – with very inexpensive prices for those who are budget-friendly. There are no direct flights from South Africa to Sri Lanka though the most popular route is with Emirates via Dubai making the total travel time to approximately 13 hours, 8 hours from Durban to Dubai and an additional 5 hours from Dubai to Sri Lanka (the main airport is Colombo).

  • Zanzibar, Tanzania

In Zanzibar life moves “pole pole” – Swahili for “slow things.” While in Zanzibar it’s important to enjoy the calm chaos and take cue from unhurried pace understand that your smoothie might take 45 minutes but trust me when I say it will be worth the wait. Zanzibar has become host to a handful of East Africa’s luxury resorts, if you looking for beach escape head to North Nungwi and Kendawa where you will find all inclusive packages.

For a slightly more “Zanzibari” experience the quieter towns such as Bwejuju or Jambiani are the most ideal. There are direct flights on Mango from Johannesburg that fly three times a week, the duration of the flight is approximately 3H30min.

  • Dublin, Ireland

It makes sense to have the capital city of Ireland have its own spot on this list, with good reasoning, Dublin is a warm and welcoming city known for the friendliness of its people. Pubs are where most of the social life is conducted. There are no direct flights to Dublin however the most cost effective is generally flying with Ethiopian airways via Addis.

  • Windhoek, Namibia

The Skeleton Coast is one of the most haunting natural phenomena to check out in the world. Flights to Windhoek from Cape Town can be found for as low as R3 500 return, depending on the special.

Visit the beach in Swakopmund, or explore the sand dunes in Sossusvlei before having dinner at a coastal restaurant that won’t hurt your wallet in the end.

  • Bangkok and Phuket, Thailand

Visitors are spoilt for choice at the ridiculously low prices, this country offers a rich variety of experiences such as chilling on the beach, lots of culture, tradition, diving and fabulous food. Thailand’s most popular places are the usual Phuket and Bangkok. If you recall the movie “Hangover” it was shot and based in the popular Bangkok.

It was probably one of the reasons how travelling increased so fast in Bangkok all the little facts and hints they gave such as “when Bangkok has you she will not give you back” is somewhat true if you get lost in the nightlife you will find yourself leaving a party only to find yourself in another and in an never-ending cycle of parties.

How can we forget the ever so popular James bond Island, this was originally known as “Khao Phing kan” which mean “Hills leaning against each other” it got a name change after James Bond shot the film “the man with golden guns”. There are unfortunately no direct flights but there are a variety of airlines that fly the route.

  • Moscow, Russia 

Russia has seen a great growth in tourists from South Africa due to the reason of visa requirements. If you recall Russia a few years ago, getting a visa was like trying to find a needle in a haystack, you couldn’t just simply get a visa just because you wanted to visit the country, you had to partner up with Russia affiliated tourism. However, now we get to experience the beautiful Moscow which is so rich in culture it’s definitely worth a visit with affordable flights from South Africa.

  • New Dehli, India

To travel to India is to indulge in a sensory experience – vibrant colours, beautiful fragrances, rich history and lively culture. It is the home of a variety of yoga and meditation retreats frequented by local and international visitors alike.

Its tourism offering includes natural wonders such as the Himalayas and spectacular Ganges, architectural icons just think of Taj Mahal or ancient city of Varanasi and, of course, epic Indian cuisine.

  • Manila, Philippines 

Philippines is often overlooked by travellers but it is fast becoming a tourist hotspot. Its natural attractions include sandy white beaches, mountains, rainforests, islands and world famous diving spots.

With conscientious planning, it is possible to book cheap flights to the Philippines and save quite a bit on travel expenses due to the high affordability of this destination.

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