This is part of a series where I break down the costs for airfare and lodging for a specific trip, as well as how much PTO time was spent. I am not including costs for food and activities as those prices fluctuate based on traveler preferences. In general, you can assume that airfare and lodging will be the bulk of your costs.
I wanted to take a trip with my girlfriends to celebrate my 40th birthday. I told everyone to have $600 for airfare ready within three months, even though I had no idea where we were going yet or how much it would cost. The only goal was to keep the airfare under $600.
I spent the next few months doing research on airfare and destinations, eventually narrowing it down to somewhere in Central America. When it came time to book, an Icelandair offer suddenly popped up on the Secret Flying feed I religiously follow on Facebook. $380 round trip tickets from Minneapolis to Paris. Score! All thoughts of Central America were immediately forgotten as my girlfriends and I quickly booked the flights for Paris. Departure was about 3 months out.
I had recently been to Paris and wasn’t too keen at going back again so quickly. Europe is small though, and it’s easy and cheap to fly within the continent. I decided to nest tickets and buy a second round trip flight between Paris and Lisbon, Portugal. Note: don’t ignore those amazing flight deals just because they don’t fly to a location you want to visit. You can always nest tickets and bounce to another location close by! We purchased Paris-Lisbon tickets with Vueling Airlines. $103 per ticket
After researching lodging options, we settled on a 3-bedroom, 2- bathroom Airbnb in Lisbon’s Alfama district. It was the perfect location for a history fanatic (that would be me), as Alfama is Lisbon’s oldest preserved neighborhood. All three of us ladies had our own private bedroom, which is also perfect for an introvert (that would also be me). $103 per night (about $34 per night/per person)
There was one more accommodation to book. Because we nested our flights, we had to layover in Paris on the way back home. I opted to stay close to the airport because our flight out was early in the morning. We chose the Ibis Budget Orly Hotel, directly on the airport grounds with a free shuttle to/from the terminal. $60 per room
Airfare Minneapolis-Paris on Icelandair: $380 per person
Airfare Paris-Lisbon on Vueling: $103 per person
Airbnb in Lisbon for 5 nights: $170 per person
Hotel in Paris for 1 night: $60 per person
Total airfare and lodging for 1 person: $713
PTO time: 5 days