๐Ÿ’ฐ My 2024 Portugal Trip Cost: A Budget Breakdown

A woman peaking out of a castle's colorful arches.

Portugal, a country famous for Port wine and beaches, can be visited with a budget of $60 to $120 a day.

My one-week trip to Portugal cost a total of $1,341. In this post, I share:

  • ๐Ÿ’ฐ Expected travel costs
  • ๐Ÿ’ก Budgeting tips
  • ๐Ÿ’ต How much cash to bring
  • โœˆ๏ธ My trip’s costs by category
  • ๐Ÿ“ My trip’s costs by destination

Planning a trip? Here’sย what to know about Portugal.

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Is Portugal Expensive To Travel To?

Portugal is a semi-affordable destination in Europe. With budget accommodation options, inexpensive food, and cost-effective public transportation, Portugal is affordable compared to other Western Europe. However, the relatively recent surge in tourism has driven prices up.

Portugal is more affordable than its Iberian neighbor, Spain. Lisbon and Porto are generally cheaper to visit than Barcelona and Madrid, Spain’s top cities.

๐Ÿ’ฐ Trip Daily Budget for Countries in Europe

For comparison, I visited these countries in Europe within a year of visiting Portugal, and here’s how much I spent per day at each one:

CountryDaily Budget
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡ธ Iceland$306
๐Ÿ‡ช๐Ÿ‡ธ Spain$155
๐Ÿ‡ฎ๐Ÿ‡น Italy$131
๐Ÿ‡ต๐Ÿ‡น Portugal$116
Daily Travel Budget for Countries in Europe

See all my daily budget for each destination I’ve visited.

How Much Is a Trip to Portugal?

This section covers estimated trip costs depending on your travel style. I share my actual travel expenses further below.

๐ŸŽ’ Budget Traveler โ€“ Portugal Trip Cost

Budget travelers can expect to spend approximately $60 per day or $420 for one week of travel in Portugal, excluding flights.

Here’s what a budget traveler’s cost breakdown can look like:

CategoryCost per Day
๐Ÿ  Accommodation$20
๐ŸŸ Food$20
๐Ÿš‡ Transportation$10
๐Ÿฐ Entertainment$10
Total$60
Portugal Daily Budget for a Budget Traveler

Traveling Portugal on a Budget

To travel on a tight budget in Portugal, here are some things you’ll need to do:

  • ๐Ÿ  Accommodation โ€“ For affordable options, stay in hostels for about $20 per night in major cities like Lisbon and Porto.
  • ๐Ÿš‡ Transportation โ€“ Get around Portugal by walking or taking advantage of its well-maintained local transportation (e.g., metro and train systems).

Lisbon and Porto have metros that cost less than $2 per ride. You can save even more by getting the Lisboa card or Porto card.

  • ๐ŸŸ Food โ€“ Dining out is generally not very expensive in Portugal if you avoid popular or high-end restaurants, but you can still save $5 to $10 per day by buying groceries or eating at “tascas,” which are Portuguese eateries.
  • ๐Ÿฐ Entertainment โ€“ Portugal’s walkable neighborhoods, charming narrow streets, and outdoor spaces can be enjoyed on a lower budget. For example, a typical day tour to Sintra, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, starts at $60. However, visiting it on your own cuts the cost in half if you take public transportation and limit visits to attractions with entrance fees.

See how to plan a day trip to the magical town of Sintra.

  • โ˜€๏ธ Travel Season โ€“ The best time to travel to Portugal to save money and to experience fewer crowds is during the low season, which runs from November to March.

๐Ÿ’ฐ Mid-Range Budget Traveler โ€“ Portugal Trip Cost

A mid-range budget traveler like myself can expect to spend approximately $120 per day or $840 for one week of travel in Portugal, excluding flights. I break down my trip expenses by travel category below.

About My Portugal Trip

To give context to the expenses below, here’s what you need to know about my trip:

  • ๐Ÿ—“๏ธย One week โ€“ I spent a week in Portugal, visiting three places:
  • โ˜€๏ธ Low season โ€“ I went to Portugal in late May, which is considered the low season.

Portugal’s high season starts in the summer months and runs from June to early September.

  • โœŒ๏ธย Group travel โ€“ I traveled with two other friends, so we were able to split some costs, such as housing.
  • ๐Ÿ’ฐ Mid-range budget โ€“ I consider myself a mid-range budget traveler, and these expenses reflect that. I donโ€™t aim to travel on a budget, but Iโ€™m thoughtful about how and where I spend.
  • ๐Ÿ€ Self-funded โ€“ My trips are self-funded, so I paid for everything listed below. None of my excursions or experiences are sponsored.
  • ๐Ÿ’ต US dollars โ€“ All costs listed here are per person and in US dollars, converted from Portugal’s local currency, the euro.

The exchange rate was $1 USD = โ‚ฌ0.92 at the time of writing.

The blog's author standing on rocky sand by a teal ocean while the wind blows her hair.
Near Sintra in Portugal.

Total Cost for a Portugal Trip: $1,341

My one-week trip to Portugal cost a total of $1,341, including flights.

See the highlights of my trip in this Portugal itinerary.

๐Ÿ’ฐ Cost Breakdown for Portugal

Here’s a quick overview of my expenses by travel category:

CategoryCost% of TotalDaily Budget
โœˆ๏ธ Flights$52839%
๐Ÿ  Accommodation$42031%$60
๐ŸŸ Food$17013%$24
๐Ÿš‡ Transportation$1058%$15
๐Ÿฐ Entertainment$1179%$17
Total$1,341100%$116
Portugal Trip’s Cost Breakdown

๐Ÿ—“๏ธ Daily Budget in Portugal: $116

My Portugal trip cost $116 per day, excluding my flights from Italy and to the United States.

Daily Budget
Excluding flights$116
Including flights$192
Portugal Trip’s Cost Per Day

A mid-range budget traveler can expect to spend approximately $120 per day in Portugal. This generally means staying at an accommodation that’s about $65 per night, eating at $ to $$ restaurants that cost roughly $25 per day, using Portugal’s metros and trains for transport, and booking group tours for some of the top attractions.

โœˆ๏ธ Flight Cost to Portugal: $528

Round-trip flights from the United States will generally be the biggest travel expense when visiting Portugal. Here are my flight costs:

FlightsTotal Cost
Barcelona โ†’ Lisbon$130
Lisbon โ†’ United States$398

A round-trip flight between the US and Portugal that costs under $400 is considered cheap; international flights typically cost over $600.

๐Ÿ  Accommodation Cost in Portugal: $420

My average cost of accommodation in Portugal was $60 per day. I was able to split accommodations with one other person at all times.

The cities of Lisbon and Porto have an Airbnb tourist tax that must be paid in cash.

Here are the accommodations I stayed at and how much I paid for each:

AccommodationTotal CostCost per Night
Lisbon hotel & Airbnb$258$52 (including tax)
Porto Airbnb$162$81 (including tax)
Lisbon City tourist tax$2
Porto City tourist tax$3
Portugal Trip’s Accommodation Cost
A modern living room in a spacious Airbnb.
Airbnb in Lisbon.

Portugal’s accommodation prices are moderate. Private rooms at mid-range hotels start at around $60 per night, but you’ll likely have to pay closer to $80 per night during the peak season. A luxury hotel can cost anywhere between $300 to $1,000 a night.

๐ŸŸ Food Cost in Portugal: $170

My average cost of food in Portugal was $24 per day.

A mid-range budget traveler can expect to spend $30 per day on food in Portugal.

Cheapest Meals in Portugal

Here are the most affordable meals I ate during my trip:

MealLocationCost
Momos (dumplings)Hole-in-the-wall restaurant (Lisbon)$6
Sandwich and coffeeSintra Castle Cafe (Sintra)$13
PizzaPizzaria (Porto)$13
Cheapest Meals in Portugal
A display window selling multiple custard tarts with charred tops.
Fรกbrica de Nata. (Photo by my sister, Kat.)

Some of Portugal’s unique foods include pastรฉis de nata (custard tarts), sardines, and francesinha (Portuguese sandwiches). I averaged two pastรฉis de nata daily, which cost less than $2 per custard. You can also get a glass of wine for the same price.

Most Expensive Meals in Portugal

Here are the most expensive meals I ate during my trip:

MealLocationCost
Wine and seafood dishesBartolomeu Bistro & Wine (Porto)$25
Vegan dishesThe Food Temple (Lisbon)$24
Middle Eastern dishesFarรจs (Lisbon)$23
Most Expensive Meals in Portugal
Port wine, cured ham and bread meal overlooking a water view with European buildings in the background.
Port wine and snack break near Porto.

You can learn about and eat Portuguese food with a five-star food tour.

๐Ÿš‡ Transportation Cost in Portugal: $105

My average cost of transportation in Portugal was $15 per day.

Here are the transportation methods I took and how much I paid for each:

TransportationTotal CostCost per Ride
Metro$9$1.50
Uber$10$3.33
Train$86$43
Portugal Trip’s Transportation Costs

Typical Costs of Portugal Transportation

There are several ways to get around Portugal, and like many other European countries, public transportation is the most cost-efficient option.

  • Metros โ€“ Lisbon and Porto have well-maintained metros that cost less than $2 per ride (โ‚ฌ1.80 for the Lisbon metro and โ‚ฌ1.20 for the Porto Metro).
  • CP train โ€“ Train tickets between Lisbon and Porto range from $30 to $45.
  • Car rentals โ€“ If you want to go on a road trip or explore areas that don’t have public transportation, you can drive a rental car that averages about $20 per day, not including gas.
  • Ridesharing apps โ€“ Uber is generally cheaper than calling a taxi. A 10-minute ride can be as cheap as $5.
A yellow tram on a narrow European street.
Lisbon’s trams. (Photo by my friend, Alison Lau.)

๐Ÿฐ Entertainment Cost in Portugal: $117

My average cost of entertainment in Portugal was $17 per day.

A typical mid-range traveler in Portugal can expect to spend about $20 a day on entertainment.

Here are all the activities and attractions I paid for and how much each cost:

Activity or AttractionCost
Sintra day tour (Lisbon)$75
Cable car ride (Porto)$6
Clรฉrigos Tower entrance fee (Porto)$6
Livraria Lello entrance fee (Porto) $5
Miscellaneous and shopping$19
Portugal Trip’s Entertainment Cost
The blog's author standing on rocky sand by a teal ocean while the wind blows her hair.
Cabo da Roca (part of the Sintra day trip).

To minimize entertainment costs, you can enjoy Portugal by doing more sightseeing, walking through its colorful neighborhoods, and avoiding paying for entrance fees and tours.

Entrance Fees for Portugal’s Top Tourist Attractions

Many of Portugal’s tourist attractions will have an entrance fee and an optional guided tour fee.

Here are the ticket prices for some of the top things to see and do in Portugal’s most popular destinations.

๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Entrance Fee for Lisbon’s Top Tourist Attractions
AttractionEntrance Fee
Jerรณnimos Monasteryโ‚ฌ12 (about $13)
Belรฉm Towerโ‚ฌ8 (about $9)
Santa Justa Liftโ‚ฌ5.30 (about $6)
Entrance Fees for Lisbon’s Attractions

The Belรฉm area of Lisbon has two of Portugal’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the monastery and the tower. You can learn more about both in this highly-rated walking tour.

Three women standing in front of a white, ornate building entry.
Jerรณnimos Monastery in Belรฉm.

See other great things to do in Lisbon.

๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Entrance Fee for Sintra’s Top Tourist Attractions
AttractionEntrance Fee
Pena Palaceโ‚ฌ20 (about $22)
Quinta da Regaleiraโ‚ฌ12 (about $13)
Castelo dos Mourosโ‚ฌ12 (about $13)
Entrance Fees for Sintra’s Attractions
A century-old castle wall made out of stone, high up on a hill.
Castelos dos Mouros in Sintra. (Photo by my friend, Alison Lau.)

Check out the magical attractions in Sintra.

๐ŸŽŸ๏ธ Entrance Fee for Porto’s Top Tourist Attractions
AttractionEntrance Fee
Clerigos Churchโ‚ฌ20 (about $9)
Douro Valley wine tourStarts at $100
Entrance Fees for Porto’s Attractions
A view of a green, lush valley with a river running through it.
Duoro Valley during a Port wine tour.

See other great things to do in Porto.

Cost Breakdown by Destination in Portugal

Below are my trip expense breakdowns for Lisbon and Porto. These two larger cities are often featured in first-timers’ travel itineraries.

๐Ÿฐ Lisbon Trip’s Total Cost: $538

During my five-day trip to Lisbon, I averagedย $108 in daily travel expenses.

I stayed at an Airbnb and a modern hotel in a central location and was able to split accommodation costs with friends. I also paid for an amazing Sintra day tour (one of the highlights of my trip), which significantly increased my budget.

CategoryTotal CostDaily Budget
๐Ÿ  Accommodation$258$52
๐ŸŸ Food$111$22
๐Ÿš‡ Transportation$66$13
๐Ÿฐ Entertainment$94$19
Lisbon Trip’s Costs by Category

See how to plan a Lisbon itinerary.

A woman on a balcony overlooking a background with buildings with orange-clay roofs.
Miradouro das Portas do Sol in Lisbon.

Lisbon is the most visited city in Portugal. The influx of expats into Lisbon in recent years has driven its cost up, so Porto, the second most visited city, is now more affordable.

๐Ÿท Porto Trip’s Total Cost: $272

During my two-day trip to Porto, I averagedย $136 in daily travel expenses.

I booked an Airbnb at the last minute in the city center and was able to split accommodation costs with two others. I also visited Livraria Lello, which is considered to be one of the most beautiful bookstores in the world.

CategoryTotal CostDaily Budget
๐Ÿ  Accommodation$162$81
๐ŸŸ Food$59$29
๐Ÿš‡ Transportation$39$20
๐Ÿฐ Entertainment$18$6
Porto Trip’s Costs by Category

See how to plan a Porto itinerary.

The interior of an intricate bookstore with a golden staircase and ceiling.
Livraria Lello in Porto.

Do You Need Cash in Portugal?

Like many European countries, Portugal has a good credit card infrastructure. However, many places still rely on cash transactions, so make sure to bring some cash.

Below are tips on bringing and using cash in Portugal.

๐Ÿ’ต 1. Withdraw cash in euros.

Portugal’s local currency is the euro (โ‚ฌ), and the US dollar is not widely accepted.

Multibanco is a Portuguese banking network that can be trusted and won’t charge you an ATM fee (although your bank might still have foreign transaction fees).

Avoid Euronet ATMs when withdrawing cash in Portugal. Throughout Europe, Euronet ATMs consistently have high fees and use terrible exchange rates, so unless you’re in desperate need of cash, I would avoid them.

๐Ÿง 2. Carry about $20 worth of cash while traveling in Portugal.

You’ll rarely need cash in Portugal, especially if you’re staying in Lisbon and Porto. Carry about $20 in cash to make small purchases.

On my Portugal trip, I spent a total of $20 in cash tipping tour guides, buying small souvenirs, and paying the Airbnb city tax. I otherwise used my credit card.

I keep my cash in my crossbody bag, but if you want extra protection against pickpocketing, carry it in a hidden money belt instead.

๐Ÿ’ฐ 3. Tipping is not expected in Portugal.

Tipping is often appreciated in Italy, but itโ€™s optional. Tips are generally only done for exceptional service.

  • Restaurants โ€“ When dining out, locals leave a 5% to 10% tip for great service. As an American, I tried to tip a waiter more than 10% at a restaurant and he initially thought I was confused about the bill’s total.
  • Tours โ€“ Tipping is more common for a guided tour, and a 10% tip is customary.

See other essential travel tips for Portugal before visiting.

Portugal Trip Planner

To make your travel planning easier, download the trip planner below and use it as a starting point. The planner has country-specific travel information, an itinerary, a packing list, and a map with key places pinned.

The trip planner is built on Notion, which I use for all my travel planning (I genuinely love this tool). If you don’t have Notion, creating an account is free.

Three Notion template screenshots are shown: travel information, itinerary, and map + packing list templates.
Preview of Portugal trip planner.

Thoughts? Questions? Leave a comment below.

๐Ÿง‹ Support Lukiih

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2 Comments

  1. Jerry Boone

    Wife and I are considering a trip to Portugal around May or June 2024. I found your website and personal info very informative.
    Thank you very much.

    1. Lukiih

      Hey Jerry, May is an awesome time to visit Portugal. Thanks for the kind words. Enjoy your trip!

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