RTW Expenses

Our goal for our nine-month round-the-world vacation was to spend less than $20,000 of personal money, which is far cheaper than our normal living expenses in the USA. The actual cost of our trip would have been well over $100,000, but thanks to millions of frequent flier miles and hotel points we did not have to pay a single penny for our 25 international flights (including a few in business class) or our 180 nights of accommodation (including 90 nights in luxury hotels).

Below are a list of links to help understand how we used “travel hacking” to make this happen.  But feel free to comment or shoot us an email (gettingmypointshigh@gmail.com) with questions!

Travel Hacking 101: How we earned 2.5 million miles

Credit Card Churning: The full list of 51 new credit card applications and a step-by-step guide to earning and redeeming miles and points by signing up for new credit cards

This can’t be legal or good for my credit right?  Read this

Managing points, miles and credit cards: Our Master Excel Spreadsheet

How we saved nearly $30,000 specifically for travel: Tips for saving money and making money off of promotions

Using flexible bank points to offset travel costs: In the links to the Excel sheets below with our full category spend you’ll notice the last column is ‘Arrival points,’ meaning this travel was paid in full by us then reimbursed in full thanks to our Barclaycard Arrival points.

We were able to splurge on hot air ballooning in Laos because of all the money we saved elsewhere

We were able to splurge on hot air ballooning in Laos because of all the money we saved elsewhere

Expenses per country: Click on the name of the country for our full budget recap post and the link at the end to see all itemized expenses.

Chile: $463.15=$25.73 per person/day Chile Expenses

Argentina$1956.06=$48.90 per person/day Argentina Expenses

Peru: $1,962.45=$51.64 per person/day Peru Expenses

Denmark: $337.39=$42.17 per person/day Denmark Expenses

Belgium: $427.90=$53.49 per person/day  Belgium Expenses

The Netherlands: $312.79=$78.18 per person/day Netherlands Expenses

South Africa: $1,858.13=$58.07 per person/day South Africa Expenses

Uganda: $5,000 donation to Come Let’s Dance, plus $1,076 spent for the two months, including $200 on our visas and $280 on rafting the Nile.

New Zealand: $1,938.86=$56.88 per person/day. New Zealand Expenses

Australia: $867.34=$72.28 per person/day. Australia Expenses

Indonesia: $761.82=$42.32 per person/day. Indonesia Expenses

Thailand: $1,372.17=$45.74 per person/day. Thailand Expenses

Laos: $836.49=$41.82 per person/day. Laos Expenses

Vietnam: $1,658.79=$27.65 per person, per day Vietnam expenses


Peru was a budget travelers paradise!

Peru was a budget travelers paradise!Other Helpful Links for RTW Travel:

Avoid banking fees when traveling

Our gear list

Seven essential steps to prepare for a RTW trip

Save miles by booking off-peak awards

Reimbursement when the airline loses your bag

Saving and making money off Airbnb

Using Uber internationally for cheap transportation

Using Citi points to book free nights and flights