|Expenses||Estimated Money Spent (in USD)||Points/Miles Used|
|Airfare||$996||17,800 Southwest Rapid Rewards|
|Lodging||$70||48,000 SPG Points + 20,000 IHG Points|
I wanted to share the breakdown of expenses for our Thanksgiving trip to Madrid, Spain. The above chart shows rough estimates of our expenses based on different categories. Hopefully this gives you an idea of how affordable a trip can be if you travel hack and do your research.
We paid for $932 for RT flights from Dallas. The positioning flights cost 17,800 Southwest Rapid Rewards plus taxes and fees ($22). We also paid $40 for nicer seats on our last leg (YYZ-DFW). While the flights were a good deal, the positioning flights and necessary hotel rooms were kind of a pain. Hindsight is 20/20 right?
The food was amazing in Spain and it didn’t break the bank. $271 divided by 6 days comes out to around $45 per day for two people. Not bad.
We typically don’t spend a lot on souvenirs since they mostly consist of postcards, mugs, and other small trinkets. However, my wife found a Lladro figurine that is only available in Spain. Therefore, we ended up buying this porcelain figurine for around $170.
Our transportation costs mainly consisted of taxi rides to/from the airport as well as bus and train tickets for our day trips out of Madrid.
I honestly was expecting this cost to be a lot higher, but we were able to find some free activities. These expenses included things like museum fees, gratuity for tours, etc. Our one big entertainment splurge actually ended up getting cancelled and refunded due to the weather.
We used points for all of our hotels except one. More details on the hotels we booked here. All in all, this is the area that we saved the most money due to our travel hacking skills.
We budgeted roughly $2,000 for this trip so at $1,883 we came in $117 under budget. During our trip, the USD to Euro ratio was about 1:0.95, which was above the average rate for 2016. This definitely helped keep the overall cost down.