Looking for somewhere new and beautiful to visit that will not break the bank? Lisbon is the place to travel to on a budget! The city is full of history, culture, beautiful streets and landscapes and so much more but one of the best things about it is that it is a very affordable capital! Plus, with the next tips, you’ll definitely be able to make the most of your trip and fully relax without worrying about finances!
Planning and booking:
Of course, the first thing to think about before the fun part of exploring is the initial planning and booking of places to stay and flights!
It probably goes without saying but, when possible, go during the low season! This helps save money when it comes to prices for accommodation and flights as well as avoiding crowded popular spots in the city.
To find the cheapest flights, you can use a flight comparing website to compare all the flights available from where you are to Lisbon! On Skyscanner, for example, you can use the standard date/time/departure/destination filters, but it also has the ability to find the cheapest date to go or the cheapest place to fly from if you are not too strict about where you want to fly from and when!
However, once you’ve found a perfect flight, do not make the mistake of booking before you have found a place to stay, especially if it is pretty short-notice! There is always the possibility to stay in a hostel, there are plenty around the city that you can find on www.hostelworld.com or similar websites! Airbnb is also a booming platform and very rightly so! You can find yourself a room or even an entire apartment and usually for a very decent price! Browse all of your options carefully and see what suits you best!
Getting around the city on a budget:
Lisbon is one of the smallest European capitals and, therefore, it is mostly walk-able and for places that are a bit far, you can either rent one of the Lime electric scooters that you can find all over the city! All you have to do is download the app on your phone, register and scan the qr code on the scooter; you pay a euro to unlock the scooter and then 15 cents per minute of usage.
As well as that, the metro and trains in Lisbon and and around are very affordable and easy-to-use. You just need to buy the re-loadable card for 50 cents and then pay for however many journeys you think you’ll need. This even works on the ferry to Almada, where the Christ statue is!
Also, you should definitely go on the iconic Lisbon trams! This could count as an actual attraction to do as well as transport, but it is definitely a must-do for everyone who visits Lisbon, at least once!
Exploring Lisbon on a Budget
Of course, the cheapest thing to do is to walk around and get lost in the tiny, medieval streets of Lisbon! However, if you want some guidance, why not join a free walking tour around the different parts of the city to save some time getting lost and get straight to the point with a knowledgeable guide?! The best thing about the Free walking tour concept is that there is no fixed price, you decide however much you think the tour was worth for you and tip the guide accordingly! The tour isn’t the only benefit of joining as you also get to meet a whole bunch of people and can get all the best tips from your guide!
Book a tour around the most picturesque districts of Lisbon here.
You can explore the city on foot for free, but do you also want to experience Portuguese culture? Head over to Alfama and Mouraria to one of the many Fado houses where you can watch a live Fado show! However, these can be very pricey if you don’t do your research well enough! You could join a Fado show in a more budget-friendly way here. You can enjoy the same experience with the live music, snacks and wine but for a more affordable price!
Eat on a budget:
One of the best things about Lisbon and Portugal in general is its delicious food! It’s also actually very easy to eat cheaply in Lisbon! Just like in most other tourist cities, avoid restaurants that are in tourist areas like main squares or near important monuments. Instead, head to where the Portuguese eat! Cafes are a great option for lunch and they almost always offer typical Portuguese dishes such as Bacalhau!
Alternatively, you could join a history and flavours tour where you can enjoy a typical Portuguese night of Petiscos. Similar to the concept of the Spanish tapas, Petiscos is all about sharing a load of appetizers or small dishes among the table and, of course, enjoy a few glasses of wine! Book your tour here.
Also, don’t forget to try the famous Pastel de Belém in Belém or the Pastel de Nata in Lisbon; these only cost between 1 and 2 euros! If you like pastries, don’t just stop there! The Portuguese know how to make pastries so there are so many delicious treats for you to try!