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Old 03-16-2006, 04:08 PM   #1
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Hi everyone,

I'm new to travelpunk, and I'm really excited about the info available here!

I'm planning to go to Santiago, Chile from September to December of this year. I'll be volunteering in an orphanage for that time, but I plan to travel a bit on weekends and possibly for a couple weeks after.

I already have living arrangements in Santiago, but I will be responsible for buying my own food. Any idea how much I should allot per day for eating?

I may travel to Bolivia and Argentina as well. How much should I plan on per day? Does anyone have experience with busses/ trains/ whatever to get between these countries? How much do they cost?

I've been all over Europe and Israel, but this will be my first time in South America. Advice please! I'll be checking this over the next couple months, so please answer even if it's a month from now. Thanks!

Naomi
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Old 03-21-2006, 04:29 AM   #2
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Hmmm...I only spent one day in Santiago, so can't be much help there. Perhaps the place you're volunteering for can give you a hand on what groceries cost, etc.? I'd say send a PM to U2fan, who lived in Argentina for awhile, and see if she can give you some help...

Sounds like an awesome opportunity!

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Old 03-21-2006, 07:21 PM   #3
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Hey there, I would dig up some exact specifics but unfortunately I am in Asia and my journal from S. America is in the US! Off the top of my head I will tell you that Chile is QUITE a bit more expensive than Argentina. I am not sure where you are from but I would say it is a little cheaper than the US, whereas Argentina is at least 3x cheaper than the US.

All of the below is in US dollars.

Food (groceries): Chile: I would allow for $15/day, whereas Argentina you could get by with $10, maybe a little more if you`re buying higher end stuff. Eating out: fairly nice restaurant: Chile $12, Argentina $6-7.

The buses in and around Chile/Argentina are quite easy to manuever, and not very expensive. However, sometimes you can fly for not much more and save loads of time because the distances between just about anyplace are HUGE. Gosh this is hard-I really wish I had my journal to tell you exactly how much I paid! I flew from Buenos Aires to Mendoza (in the northwest of Argentina near the Chilean border) and the flight was I believe nearly 2 hours whereas it would`ve been 16 hours on a bus. The flight was $100 and the bus would`ve been a little under $50. I then tried to take a bus from Mendoza to Santiago which would`ve been about $20-30 but unfortunately the road between those two places closes when there is too much snow as it`s through the Andes (something you should be aware of). So I ended up flying (a 20 minute flight!) for $85. I then took a bus from Santiago back to Buenos Aires through Mendoza when the road opened again and that was I believe about $65.

I hope this kind of helps. I am sorry I cannot give you more exact numbers. Please let me know if you have other questions or want any kind of advice whatsoever. I lived in Buenos Aires and traveled around Argentina, to Chile, and a few days in Uruguay. I met loads of people though who had been in Peru, Bolivia, etc. and heard a lot about those places.

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Old 03-21-2006, 10:48 PM   #4
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U2Fan, how much more would you say food costs in big city like Buenos Aires than in smaller areas, if you can remember any idea.
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Old 03-21-2006, 11:05 PM   #5
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Believe it or not, I would say the prices are pretty much the same.
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Old 03-21-2006, 11:07 PM   #6
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Well, in the time it took me to read this thread, you officially sold me on a trip to SA. Thank you.
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Old 03-21-2006, 11:11 PM   #7
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Awesome! I do what I can. I truly, truly love that continent and am definitely in love with Argentina and Buenos Aires and cannot wait to get back there and trek around some more. Please let me know if I can be of any more assistance.
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Old 03-31-2006, 02:03 PM   #8
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Thanks for the info! I'm sure I will have more questions as the time comes closer. It's looking as if I'll be there for six months instead of three. Fun! I'm super excited.
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