22 September

How to Budget for Australia

You lot are always asking us 'how much should I budget for Australia?', 'how much money should I bring?', 'what should my daily budget be?'... We hear ya! and we're here to help with all the budgeting tips and tricks you'll need so you wont have to worry about money when you're away.


Australia is known for being on the pricey side, which makes it very easy to underestimate your budget. When I was travelling around, I can put my hands up and say I did not go with enough money and all attempts at budgeting went out the window…my money went very quickly (typical flashpacker).

In hindsight, I wish I had left for Australia with a pre-planned budget in mind – so listen up so you don’t end up in the same boat as I did!

You have to be prepared for Australia’s high price tag, but it doesn’t mean that you can’t be budget savvy and use our tips and tricks to make your cash stretch that little bit further…lets gooooooooooooooooooooooooooo.


Typical costs in Australia:

Hostels: Depends where you are – can vary from $20 to $40 a night

Transport: Stick to walking and use Greyhound coaches for travelling between locations (we can get you a sick deal on Greyhound passes).

Food: Average cost of a meal out $17-20

Drink: A beer will cost about $9, backpacker bars more like $5

Coffee: Around $5 or just $1 in 7/11

Avo on toast: Will set you back $10 to $18


Now, let’s see how I budgeted $50 a day…


How much should I bring to Australia?

This depends on how long you’re planning to stay and if you’re hoping to find work or not…but, as a guide:

Staying for half a year: £5-6k

A year with work: Around £8k


It's all about the pre-planning...

Getting a budget plan together BEFORE you go is essential.

  • Book all tours in advance – this way you can avoid tourist traps and last minute panic buying.
  • Put together a little budget diary to keep track of your day-to-day spending.
  • Get a travel money card to transfer over a daily budget – so you don’t over-spend.
  • Pre-book hostels when you can to avoid paying on arrival which can be more expensive.



Hostel prices really really depend on where abouts you are in the country.

For dorm rooms (more budget friendly and a great way to meet people), you’re looking at an average of:

  • $20 a night in backpackers hubs like Cairns and Brisbane.
  • and more like $40 a night in larger cities and fancy seaside areas. So Sydney, Byron, Noosa.

Budget tip: Try to make up for the more expensive hostels by booking in to a couple of lower priced dorms – even if it is in a 16 bed dorm…



You can save ALOT of dolla here!

When you’re in each place, try and walk as much as possible – this will avoid regular spending on public transport that really adds up.

Budget tip: When travelling between destinations, use a Grey hound bus. There’s a load of travel combinations to choose from and it’s wayyyy cheaper than flying.

Everything you need to know about Travelling by Greyhound Bus


Greyhound Bus Pass - Cairns to Melbourne, Hop-On / Hop-Off, 3 Month


There are tonnes of things you can do to avoid spending too much on food:

  • Check out own brand items in Coles and Woolies (they also have Aldi in Aus).
  • Hostel free food shelf – sounds questionable, but people leave some pretty decent things.
  • Look out for happy hours or food offers if you’re keen to eat out.
  • Check out backpacker bars for cheapness.
  • Sometimes hostels host group dinner evenings which are usually pretty cheap to join in with.

Budget tip: Try to stick to $20 a day if you’re grabbing food out or $60 for a big ol’ food shop.



If you’re looking to party, bottle-o’s are pretty good value if you are a beer, wine or goon drinker (bottle-o’s are liquor stores in Aus).

Goon is going to be your best friend if you’re looking for the cheapest option –  it’s basically just boxed wine that doesn’t taste too much like wine. My advice would be to mix it with lemonade – tastes so much better.


Atlantic Clipper - 2 Days 2 Nights - Sailing

Activities & tours

Tours – You’re in the right place if you’re keen to book on to a load of epic tours. We’ve got your East Coast roadie sorted – drop us a Whatsapp to book.

Activities – As for day to day activities, heading to the beach is free, hiking is free, national parks are free or just wander around the city and discover some cool places.


Drop Bear Adventures - 3 Day 2 Night - 4WD Fraser Camping Adventure

I hope my budgeting tips and tricks have given you everything you need to stretch that cash. Just remember to pre-plan, think before you spend and hit us up for all of our tour discounts! But most importantly, don't forget to enjoy yourself RatPack Style. Yewwwwwwwwwwwwww Holly (RPT Blog Writer) - Stay Tuned for my next piece…

Start pre-planning now and get those tours booked up

If you’re in need of any more info drop us a message on WhatsApp +61450381801, email, click the button below to fb message us or click on the little message box to the right of the website and one of the crew will help you out!


Cheapskate survival kit


Personalised Travel Calendar

× WhatsApp to Chat