Lots of people associate Seychelles with luxury; not Susan, an experienced travel junkie and explorer. She just got back from an amazing Seychelles vacation without breaking the bank; and she’s pleased to share her budget experience on this week’s edition of the #NigeriaTravelChat show on Twitter.
Once upon a time, my travels were only dreams. But as life unravelled, I now believe that anything is achievable if you create it in your mind’s eye first.
Quarterly I organize group retreats of differing themes, a safe place to become the person you’ve dreamt of.
Seychelles is visa free for NGN citizens. Return ticket, hotel booking & sufficient funds is all you need for a permit. Don’t spend money on 3rd parties for an entry permit. I promise it’s hassle free. Remember to carry along your Yellow Fever card.
Next up: Pick a theme. For me, I chose adventure, which helped me plan & curtail my expenses to only adventure related activities.
Themes to choose from include food, nature, sightseeing, etc. Out to explore Creole food? Spend less or nothing on nature trails.
Meanwhile, that’s my ticket and I found that connecting flights were a lot cheappppppper! KQ cost $355 vs Air Seychelle’s $1000. Layovers ain’t that bad, you know.
I explored Nairobi during my layover, regretted it later though. My expenses there reduced my spending power in Seychelles
Avoid peak season of course except you’re Dangote
Best bargains are in the off-season, airfares inclusive. Googling ‘accommodation in Seychelles’ directs you to the pricey resorts.Visit https://www.airbnb.com to get rooms as low as $50/night. You’ll find cool vacation rentals, homes, experiences and places. Unforgettable trips start with Airbnb. Look out for adventures nearby or in faraway places and on airbnb.com
I joined CouchSurfer – a travel community, so while in Mahe I didn’t pay for accommodation. My host was incredible.
Every nook & cranny of Seychelles is beautiful, you don’t need to stay at a pricey resort to enjoy idyllic ambience.
On La Digue I stayed at Vanilla (airbnb) for $30/night. It’s a Creole styled & cozy self catering nestled at the mountain base.
It’s more economical to do a shorter trip and indulge all your planned activities, than a long one.
Mahe, Praslin & La Digue are the major islands in Seychelles. Island hopping is costly; since you’re travelling on a budget, it’s best to remain on Mahe.
All activities can be experienced on any of the islands. You’re not missing much by remaining on Mahe.
Mahe has accessible bus services that run through the island daily. They are very safe and comfortable. Here is the official website of the Seychelles Public Transport Corporation (SPTC) http://sptc.sc
No shame in bargaining. A lot of activities are priced for parties of 2, if you’re alone, flash your best smile and ask. I avoided the big names like a plague, their activities are overpriced. Seek smaller companies you’d get a steal
Belle Petra, a local, did me several solids. I snorkeled at $38 instead of rich folks’ $100. Again, remember to go with the small folks. Seychellois are shy, but if you strike a convo first, they are the nicest people and they know alllll the best spots!
The locals taught me how to ride a bike, took me clubbing, secret beaches. Guys, this is the secret to the fascinating world of Seychelles.
Budget travel is about frugality. Ensure to buy your booze at the supermarket; leave overpriced souvenirs . And you don’t need to pay tour operators to hike up Nid d’Aigle (Eagle’s Nest). The island is safe to tour on your own.
The beaches are free to enter except Anse Source d’Argent – La Digue. So it’s okay to skip it and visit the others. You can get a local sim card with Cable & Wireless which offers 1GB for SCR 200 ($15). In case of emergencies, THE POLICE IS YOUR FRIEND. If you’re ever in trouble, too drunk or need a ride home, just give them a visit.
In the end, my total cost of travel came to about $1500. I probably would have spent less if I didn’t island hop. I’m not a fan of telling people what to do on their visits but I hope the templates I’ve shared would give you an idea.
My tips reflect my idea of budget travel: spending money smartly. If I did it, so can you. So save up and experience paradise in Seychelles!
If you’d like to know more of me, https://wakawakachroniclesblog.wordpress.com is home to my travel stories. You’re invited to read, live vicariously and be inspired to travel.