Tips for Enjoying Phuket on a Budget

Vacationing in Phuket on a small budget is not as difficult as you may think. While Phuket may be a little more expensive than other Thailand destinations, there are many ways you can save money on your spending while still enjoying the trip of a lifetime. You don’t need to be a millionaire to enjoy the high life in Phuket – here’s how.

Image via Keith Parker / Flickr
Image via Keith Parker / Flickr

Cost-Effective Transport

When you’re on a budget the first thing you can do without is the cost of taxis (and, of course, a hire car.) the cost of tuk tuks can mount up, too. If you are on a particularly tight budget then choose a small, friendly area to stay then simply spend your time walking to the beach, hanging out in the local bars, and really getting to know the place. Or you can rent a bike – keep your eyes on the road and your wits about you as it can be dangerous, but with caution you can get around cheaply when you want to see more of the island.

Snorkeling and Swimming for Free

Make one key investment in your Phuket vacation – buy a snorkeling mask and fins. Then you can spend the day in the water, checking out the fishes and the gorgeous clear water. If you don’t snorkel then swimming is free and fun. Not all beaches are suitable for snorkeling or swimming – check out which ones are best before you go. Always check for safety before you get in the water.

Temple-Hopping in Phuket

A visit to Phuket wouldn’t be complete without a visit to some of the island’s temples, and the good news is that most are free or cheap to enter. Wat Chalong is the most popular but don’t limit yourself to this gorgeous temple, there are plenty more to explore.

Eating and Drinking Like a King

How to eat like a king when you’re on a budget? Eat like a local! Go where the Thais eat at the smaller, backstreet restaurants and cafes. Food stalls on the street can also be cheap and serve great food – look for the long lines to see where the best food is served.

Shopping on a Budget

No matter what your budget, you’ll probably still want to buy a little something to take home with you, or some gifts for your family. The good thing is that Phuket has plenty of places for shopping that won’t break the bank – the local markets are fun, colorful, and full of great value souvenirs. Even if you don’t buy anything you can have fun browsing.

Image via 9comeback /
Image via 9comeback /

Cheap Boat Trips

You can see small islands for less than the cost of an excursion package. For example, visit Phi Phi using the ferry from Bang Rong Pier and save money on the cost of a tourist package. You can also get cheap packages to visit Phang Nga Bay and the scenic attractions on the way to James Bond Island.

The View Costs Nothing

Relax and chill out at one of Phuket’s scenic viewpoints. You can check out the island from afar and marvel at the beauty of the ocean and the scenery. Take some snacks and rest awhile – you may spot somewhere you really want to go.

Browsing and Exploring in Old Phuket Town

You need the cost of a bottle of water and perhaps some fruit for a snack to enjoy wandering the streets of Phuket Town. See the gorgeous old mansion houses and take a look at the shop houses, markets, and tiny streets. The perfect place to spend a few hours. You can also check out the Phuket Town Walking Street which is a market in the middle of the popular Phuket Road.

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