How much does it cost to travel Colombia? On our trip through Latin America, Colombia was one of the countries that were at the top of our wish list. The diversity of the country, with its vibrant big cities, small Caribbean islands, colonial cities and breathtaking coastal mountains, fascinated us from the beginning. So much so that at least a “short” side trip of just under 3 weeks could not be missed.
Spending the last 22 days of our trip through Latin America in Colombia’s north was the perfect way to end our trip. We have detailed what we spent in Colombia in the little over 3 weeks in the following sections. To simplify the calculation of travel expenses in Colombia, we have rounded the amounts for the individual items to the full euro.
We are Sabrina and Andreas, two adventurous travelers who never miss an opportunity to discover the world. Whether by plane to distant countries or with our campervan Bruno, we just love to travel. We hope to give you helpful tips for your next trip on our blog.
Sabrina & Andreas Globetrotters, Travelers, Adventurers
About the currency
Colombia’s currency is called the Colombian Peso (COP). The conversion rate is about 1 Euro = 3,800 COP. 10.000 COP correspond conversely to approx. 2,65 €.
How much does it cost to travel Colombia?
We traveled to Colombia from Mexico, so we paid much less for our one-way flight than a round-trip ticket from Germany would have cost.
The prices for a round-trip flight from Germany are around 700-800 Euro. If you fly during the vacations or peak season, it can be more expensive. When entering the country, you may be asked to present a return ticket. However, this was not the case with us. If you do not have a return ticket, you can reserve a 48h-ticket.
Bestonwardticket will issue you a real, valid flight ticket within a few hours. The ticket expires by itself after 48 hours and can be used during this time, and mostly also afterwards, as a return ticket or as a confirmation of the onward journey when entering the country.
More travelogues about Colombia
Travel within the country
If you want to visit several destinations in Colombia you have 2 options. You can either take the bus or fly to the more distant destinations within the country. What is the better option for you depends on your budget and how much time you have on your trip. In order to make the best use of the 3 weeks and also to reach the Caribbean island of Providencia, we relied a lot on domestic flights.
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By bus through Colombia
Both short and long distances in Colombia can be easily covered by bus. For the long distances we chose the plane to save time and sometimes we did it when there was no other option. For example, to get to the beautiful Caribbean island of Providencia. The ways along the Caribbean coast we did completely by bus.
Taking the bus in Colombia is uncomplicated and cheap. For shorter distances you can stop buses simply by hand signal. For longer distances or special tourist shuttles you have to go to the exact starting point and pay the tickets either in the office of the provider or in the bus itself. For a bus ride with simple buses you pay about 1-2 Euro per hour and person.
By plane through Colombia
Domestic flights in Colombia are actually quite cheap. For our 4 domestic flights from
- Medellin ► San Andres
- San Andres ► Providencia(round trip)
- San Andres ► Cartagena
- Santa Marta ► Bogota
we had to pay about 613 € for 2 persons. Thus, flights within Colombia are relatively cheap. Except of the very expensive flight from San Andres to Providencia. You can read more about this here in our separate travel report on Providencia.
Please note that most of the cheap flights do not include luggage, which has to be booked for approx. 20-40 Euro per person. Overall, it is not expensive to get by plane from A to B in Colombia.
When things do go wrong: Our anecdotes
Unless unforeseen things happen that you never thought would happen to you. Two things happened to us in Colombia:
- A complete cancellation of all flights due to a violent storm (happened to us in Santa Marta). In order not to miss our connecting flight to Germany, we had to take a cab spontaneously to the next bigger city (Barranquilla) to continue to Bogota with an overpriced flight booked during the cab ride.
- Or you simply book a flight for the wrong month (30.8. instead of 30.07.) and have to book an additional flight and of course pay for it additionally.
If we would let these stupid incidents flow with into the final account, then it is nearly the double costs (1,246 €). In the breakdown below, we have of course assumed the “normal” costs (without mishaps). We hope you will not have such disasters on your trip.
Our Itinerary Through Colombia
We spent just under 3 weeks in Colombia, visiting the big city of Medellin, the beautiful Caribbean island of Providencia, and the Caribbean coast along the mainland. Of course we didn’t see all the sights, but we picked out the best highlights in our opinion. If you want to see which itinerary we took, check out our travelogue of our round trip through Colombia .
Colombia Costs: Hostels
We mainly slept in hostels during our trip through Colombia. In order to have a little privacy, we always slept in double rooms and almost always booked rooms with private bathrooms. Hostels with their common areas often offer the advantage of a kitchen that can be used by you.
If you cook for yourself, you save a lot on the cost of food. On average, we paid 20 Euro per night for a double room in Colombia. The hostels on the mainland were always very cheap. On Providencia the prices are much higher. Here we paid about 50 Euro per night.
We booked our hotels almost exclusively with Booking.com and never had a bad experience. Even when we chose accommodations that had no or very few reviews. In addition, many hotels allow you to cancel until shortly before the trip. Perfect if your plans change spontaneously.Cheap Hotels in Colombia at Booking.com *
How much does food cost in Colombia?
In order to save some money while traveling, we like to cook our own meals while traveling and rarely eat out. At lunchtime, we liked to grab several snacks from various street shops. In addition, we had breakfast already included in some accommodations. This of course saves some money and is especially advantageous if the hotel you are staying in does not have a communal kitchen.
In Palomino we were in an amazing hostel (the Sexto Sentido*) with its own terrace, which belongs to a French couple. On some evenings, they also offered a super tasty dinner there, which was not that cheap. Therefore, we have listed this item separately.
How much do activities cost in Colombia?
The versatility of Colombia is also reflected in the activities you can do there. From visiting different national parks, hiking, scuba diving, boat trips, snorkeling to river tubing. Since Colombia is quite inexpensive as a travel destination, we tried to do as many things as possible. This was then also reflected in the costs.
In addition to the expenses for accommodation, food and transportation costs, there are usually other costs that we have listed here. We did not buy any SIM cards in Colombia. The Wifi in the hostels was mostly sufficient for us. Since Colombia was the last destination on our trip, we have bought several souvenirs in Colombia for family and friends.
Total Costs of our Colombia Trip
But what was the total cost of our 22-day trip through Colombia? In the end, our stay in Colombia was more expensive than we thought. Especially the excursion to Providencia was a burden on the travel budget, but it was worth every penny.
Do you have any other questions about the costs of a Colombia round trip or were the costs different for you? Or would you add more costs to the list of travel costs for a Colombia trip? Then write us a comment under the article!