As it comes towards the end of another trip report, and the end of this trip, I had come to a point to see how much I actually did spend on this trip. Furthermore, I find that it is nice to share how much I spend in case you are trying to plan a similar trip. As with the one I did previously for my Europe part, I will split up the post to a few main sections. Transportation, Accommodations, Attractions and for Shopping. I will not include the amount on shopping that I spend as it differs from people to people. United States is definitely not a cheap place to travel to, given their standard of living as well as their taxes, which I will share more later on in the post!
First of all, let me share on how it is like in the United States, when you buy stuff or dine in the states, the prices that you see on the menu or on the shelves, are not the one that you pay at the cashier. This is throughout the whole city. A good guide will be adding 10% to it. This is because the customer are liable for taxes. There are things like city tax, state tax or even federal tax. All in all it is about 10% or more. So that will be added during check out. Keep in mind when getting those affordable Kate Spade and Michael Kors. Different city will have different tax rate! I find it so much more expensive in comparison to Europe or other country.
Furthermore, there is this tipping situation in United States. Usually for tourists, I will say it will only be applicable when you take a taxi or dine in restaurants. A good guide is a buck for every drink you order or 10% for each meal. It does comes up to a good amount after a while! For taxi rides, you can just round it up to the nearest tens or dollar.
My flights to the United States and back to singapore are redemption tickets from my miles. I flew in to JFK in New York City and then at the end of my trip, I flew from Los Angeles back to Singapore. Wanna do the Suites? All it takes from me was about 91,000 Miles and a couple hundred in tax and fees!
For my internal flights around United States, I got domestic flights from Delta and Virgin America. The most expensive flight of mine was the one where I flew to Las Vegas from New York City right at the thanksgiving weekend. That cost me close to 350 SGD each.
We then also got a car rental for our road trip while in Las Vegas, where we drove to Grand Canyon and Death Valley. The cost for the car was around 380 SGD and I pay for around 90 SGD for gas.
In the other cities, such as NYC, Seattle, LA, San Francisco. We use a mixture of subways, lyft, uber and trams. The most expensive was the NYC Subway, where any ride on it cost a flat $2.75 USD! Make use of all the sign up credits from Lyft and uber, you can really save a lot!
All in total, for my travelling of 25 days in United States, my flights from Singapore, all the internal flights, car rental and also the metro, taxis and trams. I spend a total of around 5,600 SGD.
We stay at hotels throughout the trip and I have shared the cost of them in each individual post. To sum it up, I stayed in 5 hotels, most of them 4-5 star. Thankfully, the Citi Prestige 4th night free benefit brought down the cost by quite a bit. One of the best credit card ever.
All in all, I spend a total of 4,800 SGD on my accomodation for 25 days, or 24 nights as it would be. That will be around 192 bucks a night! All my prices are for 3 person so for a single person that is only 64 bucks . Sometimes it is always good travelling in groups. If you are willing to go lower on your standards, you will save even more!
I will say that eating is very expensive in United States. For a person, a meal can go up to about 20-30 dollars. Furthermore the taxes and tipping just doesn’t help it at all. It really make a huge difference. Sometimes takeaway and fast food helps, since you do not have to tip! Taxes varies around the different states, expect about an increase of about 10% on the prices you see in the menu.
I had like super awesome 3 star michelin restaurant as well as street food.
Eating in San Francisco is the most expensive since their standard of living is the highest! Try out some of the local best Boudin Clam Chowder when you are ever in Fisherman Wharf!
I spend a total of 2,200 SGD on food during my travels. This is around 88 SGD a day for 3 person!
This is another place that you will spend on. After all, you are here to explore and travel. You will definitely spend some money on attractions and stuff. In fact most of the places are pretty cheap or free. Places such as Grand Canyon and Death Valley, you only need to get a permit which is around 25 or 35 USD. In fact, you can even don’t pay the permit, but I am too chicken to do so!
The most expensive attractions gotta be the Statue of Liberty and The Alcatraz. I pay for about 25 SGD per ticket for the Statue of Liberty and for The Alcatraz, that is a whooping 52 SGD each.
Then I also went to the range in LA which was such a great experience, read up on my previous post for that, it cost me about 65 USD.
In total I spend approx around 350 SGD on my activities and attractions that I visited.
Here is a summary on the amount of money that I spend during this trip:
Transportation: 5,600 SGD on transportation
Accomodation: 4,800 SGD for 24 nights, One night for 200 SGD
Food: 2,200 SGD for 25 days, One day at 88 SGD
Attractions: 350 SGD
All in all, I spend a total of 12,950 SGD for the whole of my trip for the 3 of us. That brings it to about 4,316 SGD for each of us. It is always doable, not including your shopping as well. I did stay in nice hotel, splurge on Michelin food, dine in fancy restaurant. 4 thousand plus might be a lot but the things that I saw are priceless. Hope this would help in your planning. Hit me up if you have any more questions regarding my expenditure! While not the cheapest, neither is it the most cost efficient way to do it. It is certainly one of the most memorable trip for me!