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Cheap Places to Travel 2023: Favorable Exchange Rates Make These Destinations Cheap Places to Travel

The value of the South African rand has fluctuated a lot over the past few years, but we’re pretty happy with where it is today. (To compare, one U.S. dollar only got you 8.57 ZAR ten years ago.) Stretch those bucks on the Test Kitchen’s 21-course tasting menu in Cape Town, then head into the wilderness at Singita Castleton Lodge in the Sabi Sand game reserve.

Traditional stilt fishermen in Sri Lanka

Daria Dyachenko/Unsplash

Sri Lanka

1 USD = 365.65 SLR

The Sri Lankan rupee has slowly gotten more and more favorable over the past couple of decades, but it completely skyrocketed this past year (a dollar converted to 201 SLR in February, and now look where we are). We’re more excited than ever to explore this incredible island nation, where you can see leafy tea plantations, Buddhist temples, golden beaches, and elephant sanctuaries in one memorable trip.

Costa Rica

1 USD = 593.31 CRC

The Costa Rican colón has depreciated a bit in recent months, but it still remains favorable for U.S. travelers. Then there’s the fact that the country’s best asset (i.e. its natural beauty) is mostly free to enjoy. From trekking through the tropical cloud forests in the mountains of Alajuela to surfing off the coast of Peninsula Papagayo, Costa Rica is one of the world’s best countries for outdoor adventure. (And the hotels are pretty great, too.)


1 USD = 4,778.33 COP

Colombia feels like a microcosm of South America’s best features, encompassing Andean peaks, Amazonian jungles, and sandy beaches within its borders. Besides the allure of nature, the country’s major cities are experiencing a renaissance in food, art, and technology—yet it’s still one of the most affordable places for Americans to visit right now.


1 USD = 55.60 PHP

We’re never not dreaming about island hopping in the Phillippines. It’s hard to believe that places like Palawan and Siargao are so economically accessible, given that they are some of the most beautiful places on the planet. Even five-star resorts like Shangri-La Boracay can be reserved for under $350 per night, which is all the incentive we need to book a trip right now.

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