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Most Affordable Camino??

Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
The Camino Frances offers the most options. However, remember that someone has to pay for the upkeep of every roof and building, and the facilities for the hikers/pilgrims. What one person takes as free has to be paid by someone else.
 
Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
What’s the typical price for a night on that trail?? And I also understand what you’re saying as someone who has ran a hostel on more than one occasion. But simultaneously I’ve hosted tons of people for free and want to know what is possible in this pilgrimage universe
 

trecile

Camino Addict
Camino(s) past & future
SJPDP-Finisterre X 2 - 2016 & 2017, El Norte - Irun to Vilalba 2018
I haven't done the Portuguese, but I've read that food and albergues are cheaper.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
Which Camino are you thinking about walking?
 
Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
Which Camino are you thinking about walking?
Honestly, I don’t entirely know, mr Davebugg. I’m absolutely enraptured by Austria’s landscapes and know that this trail specially is also not taken very often, but I also know that the prices for accommodation would probably murder me even though it seems like it’s done in 10 days a lot of the time

I’ve read the most about France and Spain, but I also only really have 4 weeks.

When I do the proper Camino, I will do it around this time when I have much mych much less in my life going on
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
@Localmanruinseverything you pose an interesting question.

I'll ask a couple back. Are you considering making a pilgrimage to the shrine of Santiago, or perhaps to the End-of-the-World and the sundering sea? Or are you looking for a cheap hiking trip where others will bear most of the cost of creating the infrastructure that will support your venture?

There is a complex network of Donativo and inexpensive parochial and state supported Albergues along the Camino routes that enable pilgrims to make their journeys in reasonable comfort and at minimal cost. Research on a site such as www.gronze.com will help you discover where you will find very economic accommodation. Just keep in mind that Donativo doesn't mean free.
 
Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
Finisterre would be a heavenly conclusion for a lack of better words.

And in regards to the third questions since it seems like inquiring about the possibility of something free once is making me look a bit shitty and since you bring it up twice in your answer — ABSOLUTELY.

I have no source of income working full time with asylum seekers while doing my last year of university simultaneously and my visa does not permit me to work for pay legally in Denmark, nor would I even have the time. Hence, why I am burnt out just trying to survive here. I also am asking this for anyone else who would also be passionate about this journey but do not have the same amount of funds that, for example, the two German girls who introduced me to this journey had. So yes I want to know if things are cheap so I know if this is even possible for me to dream of doing
 

robhel

Rob
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Finisterra (2013)
Porto-SDC-Fin-Mux (2016)
Pamplona-SDC (2017/18}
Burgos-SDC-Fin (2017/18)
It is a great pity that that the definition of "Pilgrim/Pilgrimage" seems to be all-encompassing these days - to the point where "cheap backing holiday" isn't far off the mark........
Sad really.
 

davebugg

"When I Have Your Wounded" - Dustoff Motto
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances...
Sept. 2017: SJPdP to Burgos
Sept./Oct. 2018: SJPdP to Santiago de Compostela
It might help clarify things a bit if you defined what you mean by 'cheap', inexpensive', etc. Cheap is a relative term and so makes trying to pinpoint affordability -- in the context that YOU mean -- a bit unclear. I can guess at what you are referring to, but perhaps you can tell us what the maximum amount of money per day that you can afford.

[ Let me gently point out that this Forum is relatively free of vulgarities, which is rather refreshing compared to the detritus contained in many social media sites. I am not criticizing, just pointing out what the norm is for our Forum. :) ]
 

Kiwi-family

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Past: (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2018)-Frances, Baztan, San Salvador, Primitivo, Fisterra,VdlP, Madrid
Camino de Madrid has a number of places that are free as well as donativos and five euro albergues. You’d need to plan a little as some of them are not open at weekends and then you’d end up paying 35.
Preparing your own food instead of eating out will keep costs down too.
 

Tincatinker

Moderator
Staff member
Camino(s) past & future
Lots ;0)
Finisterre would be a heavenly conclusion for a lack of better words.

And in regards to the third questions since it seems like inquiring about the possibility of something free once is making me look a bit shitty and since you bring it up twice in your answer — ABSOLUTELY.

I have no source of income working full time with asylum seekers while doing my last year of university simultaneously and my visa does not permit me to work for pay legally in Denmark, nor would I even have the time. Hence, why I am burnt out just trying to survive here. I also am asking this for anyone else who would also be passionate about this journey but do not have the same amount of funds that, for example, the two German girls who introduced me to this journey had. So yes I want to know if things are cheap so I know if this is even possible for me to dream of doing
Then thank you for your service. If you are doing good work without other reward then may the road be kind to you. The Camino Frances has the densest network of pilgrim support and is probably the route that will offer you the most opportunities. But it is a hard road for those with little money. The tourist boards and hotel associations have little regard to the poor pilgrim. Again www.Gronze.com will help you identify the Donativo, parochial and Junta Albergues where a few €'s will find you shelter.

Buen camino
 

C clearly

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2012, 2014, 2015, 2016). Seville-Astorga (Mar 2017). Mozarabe (Apr-May 2018)
On the Frances, minimal cost for a bed varies from donativos scattered along the route, to albergues charging €6-15 in most areas, and €5 or 6 in the Xunta Albergues of Galicia. Some routes (not so much the Frances) have polideportivo sport facilities where there is sometimes a free bed in the changing rooms, but as @Kiwi-family pointed out, you might need to spend €28 the next night.

My guess is that you can do the Camino Frances fairly easily (but with care) on €30/day, or with even more care on €20/day. Less would require penny-counting and virtually no restaurant meals or breaks.
 

Bob from L.A. !

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francis 2012, 2014, 2016. Camino Norte 2018. Many more to come in my future God willing !
Too many variables in the initial question.
Suggestion: Go online and research the part(s) of the world where you'd be interested in walking, obtain a desired distance, ascertain time allowable in your life to walk, figure out what time of year (season) you'd like to walk, and several other variables.
By answering these initial questions you might be able to ascertain a more accurate and logical answer to the initial question.
Either way good luck and Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
It is a great pity that that the definition of "Pilgrim/Pilgrimage" seems to be all-encompassing these days - to the point where "cheap backing holiday" isn't far off the mark........
Sad really.
Geez I’ve already had to delve into what I do for a living and my financial situation to seemingly justify posting on this site while not having any money, is this what this community is generally like??
Do I have to go into my personal life here as well and divulge literally everything that led me here and to making this post and hope that my past experiences matching up with my current (and past work) migjt make me acceptable enough in your eyes to possibly make the same journey as you?? As though you are some authority as to who can do this or not? This is sad to me, really.
 
Camino(s) past & future
??? (2019)
On the Frances, minimal cost for a bed varies from donativos scattered along the route, to albergues charging €6-15 in most areas, and €5 or 6 in the Xunta Albergues of Galicia. Some routes (not so much the Frances) have polideportivo sport facilities where there is sometimes a free bed in the changing rooms, but as @Kiwi-family pointed out, you might need to spend €28 the next night.

My guess is that you can do the Camino Frances fairly easily (but with care) on €30/day, or with even more care on €20/day. Less would require penny-counting and virtually no restaurant meals or breaks.
This is very very helpful, thank you so much! Your answer seems to be the summation of what people have been pointing to and will keep in mind as I research more :)

I never go out to eat in general and would not for this journey either. In my head, like other journeys, i would travel pretty light and bring food to ration (having planned a bit in advance the distance between places and availabilities of shops) until I get to the next location where it is possible to get more cans of beans and bread.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF2012,Le Puy/CF 2015 Portugues 2017 Norte 2018, CF 2019
As has been pointed out by Senors Bugg and TincaTInker (gotta love those tags) Defining what you mean and pointing out Xuntas and Donativos will save you lots of moneys I would also bring up one other idea. If you think the Portuguese is going to be hot try walking the Via de la Plata that time of the year. All Caminos that are inland will be hot that time of the year. Thats why you may want to try the Portuguese starting in Lisbon. There are pretty good services all the way. I would leave super early the first day to get to the first albergue as it is small. When you get to Porto try doing the coastal route. It is always cooler there. Find Albergues you can cook in. Buy your food for the day the night before. If you can't cook in an albergue find some fellows pilgrims to go out at night for dinner. I have been in Brasil many times and many restaurants there served such big portions that one plate can be shared by two people. I walked the Portuguese with a friend of mine. We are both 6' 2" and about 215 pounds. If you walk off the main camino routes and go into restaurants that are really for locals you can find lots of them that serve these big portions just like in Brasil. There were many nights my friend and I spent about $5.00US for a great meal and we were full. There were a few nights where we just ordered soup that would was loaded with protein and vegetables and nothing else because they would bring us or offer us as much as we wanted. I have to admit this was on the inland route but I would be surprised that the coastal route doesn't the same.
I just wanted to add one more thing. I know not many people can speak Portugese. But if you can speak some Spanish you can get by. More people in Portugal can speak English then in the small towns and villages in Spain. You can also use google translate and that would help. You can observe from the windows or in the restaurants the size of the portions before you eat and ask about the soup I mentioned above. Those restaurants don't mind if you split portions. You will see everyone doing it. Remember one thing about the Portuguse people. They are the warmest, most generous and friendly people I have ever met in all my travels. This is not a knock on the Spaniards, but compared to Portugal they are almost like Scrooge during Christmas. I love Spain and it's people but believe me the people of Portugal can't be beat!!!!!
 
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Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Portugues (2017)
Sorry, but I don’t think anyone is making judgements or casting aspersions. This is a pretty open minded forum. I would offer there is a wide range of options in planning your Camino. The Camino is first and foremost a pilgrimage and as such it entails some amount of hardship and sacrifice. That might mean we save for years before going, perhaps creating a “Camino Fund”, taking into account airfare, food and lodging. Plan on €35/day. I would suggest the sacrificial element and the discipline to save for it, make it all much more worth it. Buen Camino
 
Camino(s) past & future
Caminho Portugues (2017)
As has been pointed out by Senors Bugg and TincaTInker (gotta love those tags) Defining what you mean and pointing out Xuntas and Donativos will save you lots of moneys I would also bring up one other idea. If you think the Portuguese is going to be hot try walking the Via de la Plata that time of the year. All Caminos that are inland will be hot that time of the year. Thats why you may want to try the Portuguese starting in Lisbon. There are pretty good services all the way. I would leave super early the first day to get to the first albergue as it is small. When you get to Porto try doing the coastal route. It is always cooler there. Find Albergues you can cook in. Buy your food for the day the night before. If you can't cook in an albergue find some fellows pilgrims to go out at night for dinner. I have been in Brasil many times and many restaurants there served such big portions that one plate can be shared by two people. I walked the Portuguese with a friend of mine. We are both 6' 2" and about 215 pounds. If you walk off the main camino routes and go into restaurants that are really for locals you can find lots of them that serve these big portions just like in Brasil. There were many nights my friend and I spent about $5.00US for a great meal and we were full. There were a few nights where we just ordered soup that would was loaded with protein and vegetables and nothing else because they would bring us or offer us as much as we wanted. I have to admit this was on the inland route but I would be surprised that the coastal route doesn't the same.
I just wanted to add one more thing. I know not many people can speak Portugese. But if you can speak some Spanish you can get by. More people in Portugal can speak English then in the small towns and villages in Spain. You can also use google translate and that would help. You can observe from the windows or in the restaurants the size of the portions before you eat and ask about the soup I mentioned above. Those restaurants don't mind if you split portions. You will see everyone doing it. Remember one thing about the Portuguse people. They are the warmest, most generous and friendly people I have ever met in all my travels. This is not a knock on the Spaniards, but compared to Portugal they are almost like Scrooge during Christmas. I love Spain and it's people but believe me the people of Portugal can't be beat!!!!!
I concur on Portugal. We lived there for 3 years and hated to leave. I walked the Portugues in 2017 and loved it. It was high summer, but even on the inland route the temperatures were moderated by the Atlantic. Bonus: the food and lodgings were reasonable. I’d call the Portugues a great alternative to the Frances; not nearly as crowded and delightful people.
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF2012,Le Puy/CF 2015 Portugues 2017 Norte 2018, CF 2019
I concur on Portugal. We lived there for 3 years and hated to leave. I walked the Portugues in 2017 and loved it. It was high summer, but even on the inland route the temperatures were moderated by the Atlantic. Bonus: the food and lodgings were reasonable. I’d call the Portugues a great alternative to the Frances; not nearly as crowded and delightful people.
I was constantly amazed and blown away by them. I wish I had made a note of every instance of their kindness. I could have written a short book. in Coimbra I started wandering around and got lost. I saw a group of university students in their long black robes and asked them for directions. They had just finished a class. It was about 9:00PM at night. They insisted on walking me back to my albergue. It turned out to be about a 25 minute walk. There were 8 of them and they wanted to talk about the craziness that is happening in the United States and their hopes and more importantly their fears about what was happening in the United States and about climate change, and how deeply it was affecting their vision of their futures. We ended up talking for more than an hour. I remember thinking that there is hope with young men and women like these. Not to be political, but I had alot of hope for their future as well as my daughters future with them in this world.
 

Pilger99

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
addicted since 1999 (Aragones, CF), lots of caminos in Spain and Portugal since then
During summer (>June or more precisely after harvest ) in central Spain you can easily sleep on the empty fields. If you are lucky you will find some straw. It does not really need a tent, since summer months are usually very dry and hot. It's not officially allowed, but it is not common, that the owner or the police is checking the fields at night.
Bigger cities have places for the homeless, there are ruins sometimes or the porch roof of a church etc. If you really want you can stay for free.

Sleeping under a roof, shower, electricity has a cost, although some places don't ask for it or in case of donativo don't tell you how much they really need. As the least expensive albergues take 5€ per night, I assume 5€ is the lower limit that one should give. Some ways have had a medium of sleeping cost of ~10€/night already some years before, e.g. the first stages of Camino Francés and all Aragonés. On the latter you can not spend much more during the day, because most places are desserted, without shops or restaurants.

The portuguese way out of Lisbon has wide spread daily costs. Some day you can eat lunch for 5€ and can sleep for another 5€, sometimes you spend 18€ (hostel) and the dinner is 12€. Supermarkets: warm food costs more than 5€, beverages and chocolate is more expensive than in Spain, but essentials like bread, pasta, wine are inexpensive. I still believe in the median 1€ per km is possible almost everythere in Spain and Portugal, but a few € extra make it much easier.

What you don't have to worry in albergues is extra taxes and to undertip. Some hotels and restaurants charge VAT extra, but then you should see "sin IVA" or "IVA no incluido" on their pricelists. It's also common to make publicity with phone costs "sin IVA", but that's about all.
In Porto even a pilgrim has to pay the 2€ tourist tax, Lisbon was 1€. Looks pretty unfair, as the hostels and albergues often charge less than 10€ / night. It's more reasonable for an hotel stay.
 

The Kolbist

Member
Camino(s) past & future
past: Frances, inland Portuguese, Fatima
future: Del Norte, coastal Porugues, Englis
In Redecilla del Camino, in Jose's Albergue San Lazaro which was donativo, we met a young man who was doing the Camino with a young girl with a donkey. He said that they usually would ask locals if they can sleep in a barn or would sleep in a field with a tent. The locals usually were kind enough to let them sleep in the barns. They would cook their own food as they carry camping gears. But sometimes, they stay in a donativo. My wife and I gave a little bit more that night to the host for our donativo thinking the young man may not have enough to give as donativo. I believe that the spirit of giving and sharing in the Camino was alive.
 

Trude

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francais 2013 Finnestere, Muxia 2013, 2017
Norte 2014, Francais, 2015, 2016, VDLP 2017
The Portuguese is cheaper for food but not Albergues. The Messetta on the French Camino
Has the cheapest Albergues.
 

robhel

Rob
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Finisterra (2013)
Porto-SDC-Fin-Mux (2016)
Pamplona-SDC (2017/18}
Burgos-SDC-Fin (2017/18)
Wow! Take it easy mate :)
I made an observation which applies across the board - not just to you. I would, however, suggest that you read up on the history behind the Camino. If you delve into that you will understand that there is (or should be) more to it than a beautiful walk. I wish you well.

Geez I’ve already had to delve into what I do for a living and my financial situation to seemingly justify posting on this site while not having any money, is this what this community is generally like??
Do I have to go into my personal life here as well and divulge literally everything that led me here and to making this post and hope that my past experiences matching up with my current (and past work) migjt make me acceptable enough in your eyes to possibly make the same journey as you?? As though you are some authority as to who can do this or not? This is sad to me, really.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) portugues(2013)San Salvador (2017)
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
To answer your question, your best bet is to do what has been suggested and study Gronze for the donativo and parochial albergues on the Camino Francés. Then another option is that in Galicia the municipal albergues are all around €6 or €7 euro per night.
 

Albertagirl

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (2015); Ch. d'Arles: Oloron Ste Marie to Aragones; Frances (2016); V.d.l.P.; Sanabres (2017)
@Localmanruinseverything
This fall I shall be volunteering in one of the donativo hostels. My letter of acceptance for this short term volunteer position (two weeks) gave only one instruction for my time as a hospitalera (hostess): that I might never ask any pilgrim for money. When I stay in one of these hostels, I always leave in the donation box as much, or more, as I would pay in a regular hostel. This is because I want these hostels to continue to exist. They are meant for you, and for people like you, those very short of cash who are called to pilgrimage and those who are burnt out helping others and need a pilgrimage. I see, more and more, that my major task will be to welcome pilgrims. If you stay in the donativo hostel in Najera on the Camino Frances in the second half of September, I shall welcome you, and feel privileged to do so. Blessings on your pilgrimage.
 

Davey Boyd

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Seven Compostelas in Three years and counting......
I have walked a few camino's. I am always on a tight budget. I sleep outside often. Usually out of choice, but not always. Sometimes while walking for six months my money has arrived late. I have walked on 3 Euro's a day (doable but not recommended). 30 Euro's a day in Spain is comfortable. 45 at least in France per day to be comfortable. Comfortable means sleeping indoors, a full meal in a bar in the evening, snacks/drinks during the day.

I met five people who walked from Prague, they walked on five Euro's a day. That is five Euro's between them and their dog. They did fine. Though they never ever slept indoors. Then they walked back to Prague. It is doable. Bread and meat from a shop costs 1.50 Euro max. 1 litre of wine 1 Euro. Etc.

I hear a few on this forum who think that because you are poor you have no right to walk. Utter rubbish. The most beautiful people I have ever met on camino walked without having the choice to sleep indoors every night. Then they get looked down on by pious 'pilgrims' as scum. This has happened to me on every camino I walked when I slept outside. Luckily most are not like that. But it does happen, and constantly.

Some of us get called to walk. Some are at a point in their life when walking the camino can help them in many ways. Many do not have the luxury of bank balances/jobs/rich families/or means to save cash.

It is no longer right to be rascist/sexist etc but it seems still ok to bash the less well off.

Some of the replies above appall me to be honest. (Many good posts too). The tourist is the one with the money, not the other way around. The poor do not have bucket lists. (Not saying you are poor localmanruinseverything, just annoyed).

Peace and love to all
sorry for the rant
best wishes and a cheap buen camino to localmanruinseverything

Davey
 

robhel

Rob
Camino(s) past & future
SJPP-Finisterra (2013)
Porto-SDC-Fin-Mux (2016)
Pamplona-SDC (2017/18}
Burgos-SDC-Fin (2017/18)
To me whether you are rich or poor is totally irrelevant in this discussion. However, the reason for undertaking a pilgrimage, rather than a holiday, is relevant IMHO. But who cares anymore...... :)
 

David Tallan

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (1989 and 2016), Portugues - from Porto (2018)
To me whether you are rich or poor is totally irrelevant in this discussion. However, the reason for undertaking a pilgrimage, rather than a holiday, is relevant IMHO. But who cares anymore...... :)
When I read back to his original post, I don't see anything that would lead me to assume that he is planning to undertake a holiday rather than a pilgrimage. He is clearly worn down from the good works he has been doing and looking to step outside his every day life for a bit. I think that is true of many "real pilgrims" (for those that make that distinction).The word he uses is "an adventure", one which could apply to either pilgrimage or holiday. It is certainly something that many pilgrims seek on their journey and have since the middle ages (although not necessarily the only thing). In my experience, many people called to the Camino don't necessarily know as they set off what their reason is. I certainly wouldn't expect them to justify it here.
 

Raggy

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Mozarabe Almeria (2017)
Cherhill to Canterbury - Pilgrims' Way (2018)
Via Francigena (2019)
My letter of acceptance for this short term volunteer position (two weeks) gave only one instruction for my time as a hospitalera (hostess): that I might never ask any pilgrim for money.
Well that puts paid to my dream of serving as a hospitalero and entertaining pilgrims with close-up conjuring tricks.
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2005,2008,2010,2015.camino Portuguese 2007 .primativo2012.camino Norte 2009.sjpdp to finisterre and muxia 2007. Le Puy to jpdp 2006. Via francigena vercelli to Lucca 2014. Lucca to Rome 2016.
I have walked a few camino's. I am always on a tight budget. I sleep outside often. Usually out of choice, but not always. Sometimes while walking for six months my money has arrived late. I have walked on 3 Euro's a day (doable but not recommended). 30 Euro's a day in Spain is comfortable. 45 at least in France per day to be comfortable. Comfortable means sleeping indoors, a full meal in a bar in the evening, snacks/drinks during the day.

I met five people who walked from Prague, they walked on five Euro's a day. That is five Euro's between them and their dog. They did fine. Though they never ever slept indoors. Then they walked back to Prague. It is doable. Bread and meat from a shop costs 1.50 Euro max. 1 litre of wine 1 Euro. Etc.

I hear a few on this forum who think that because you are poor you have no right to walk. Utter rubbish. The most beautiful people I have ever met on camino walked without having the choice to sleep indoors every night. Then they get looked down on by pious 'pilgrims' as scum. This has happened to me on every camino I walked when I slept outside. Luckily most are not like that. But it does happen, and constantly.

Some of us get called to walk. Some are at a point in their life when walking the camino can help them in many ways. Many do not have the luxury of bank balances/jobs/rich families/or means to save cash.

It is no longer right to be rascist/sexist etc but it seems still ok to bash the less well off.

Some of the replies above appall me to be honest. (Many good posts too). The tourist is the one with the money, not the other way around. The poor do not have bucket lists. (Not saying you are poor localmanruinseverything, just annoyed).

Peace and love to all
sorry for the rant
best wishes and a cheap buen camino to localmanruinseverything

Davey
Well said
Thank you
Best wishes
Annette
 

c2c

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances SJPP-SDC : May/June 2017
Potugueses Porto-Finistera (June 2020)
I met people who were asking for money along the way which means it can't be done for free. You need 20-30 euro per day on average so that you don't have to worry about having basic needs met. Not having this would put an extra burden on you to either ask for money or go out of your way to hunt down free accommodations. I hope you get to do it at some point. Ultriea!
 

Moonstruck

Moonstruck
Camino(s) past & future
May 2018
Whether it is a walking holiday or a pilgrimage, a person's motive and his relationship with God are his business. It is not our place to judge. As His servants, we are here simply to serve. Anyone can walk the Camino. Buddhists, Muslins, Christians and Atheists can all share the Way. The moderators please correct me if I am wrong. This forum welcomes all who are curious about or interested in the Camino. We, as members, are part of the community who help each other to fulfil our Camino dreams. To Localmanruinseverything, I wish you well and hope you will find your path to the Camino soon.
 

debbie r

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino de Santiago (2019)
I have just completed the Frances and kept note of all spending. I averaged 17 euros a day - that included always giving at least 5e for donativo bed and 8e/10e for donativo meal, mostly but not always staying in cheapest option and almost always cooking for myself for all meals. I generally stopped for a cuppa once or twice a day. Hope that helps!!
 

gittiharre

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF Austria Czech Le Puy Geneva RLS V. Jacobi V. Regia V. Baltica/Scandinavica Porto Muxia
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
The Madrid Route. Most albergues are 5 Euro per night or donativo. You can cook for yourself and there are not many shops or other temptations to spend money on.
The German Via Regia is also cheap.
5 to 10 Euro to stay in pilgrim type lodgings or church based accommodations and a plate of food is about 10 Euros for dinner.
Bfast at bakery about 3.50. I spent Euro 33 per day on average and lived very well.
 

RumAndChupacabras

Do unto other's as you would have them do unto you
Camino(s) past & future
Jul-Sept 2019 ~Apr. 2018 Oviedo, Santo Toribio, Covadonga~May/June 2016 Portuguese
@Localmanruinseverything
It's true about the ridiculously low prices in Portugal. For €1 you, as a Peregrino can purchase a drink (from coffee to wine) which the vast majority of times included a small plate of food. It was our experience that happened with each beverage purchased. The people of Portugal, food, drink and culture are sublime. You could always aquire an umbrella to save on sunscreen. ;)
 

Mike Savage

So many friends to meet . . . so little time
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Francés,Inglés
Muxia/Finisterre
Português Coastal
Português Central
Sanabrés
For me the biggest expense is getting from the US to Europe. It costs me about the same amount of money as I spend walking the Camino for two months. The overall cost per day for me is about the same on all of the Caminos I have walked in Spain and Portugal. I have heard that France and Italy are more expensive but I have not had the opportunity to walk there.
 

Davey Boyd

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Seven Compostelas in Three years and counting......
I met people who were asking for money along the way which means it can't be done for free. You need 20-30 euro per day on average so that you don't have to worry about having basic needs met. Not having this would put an extra burden on you to either ask for money or go out of your way to hunt down free accommodations. I hope you get to do it at some point. Ultriea!
But you don't NEED 20-30 Euros a day - (better with it though)! I have (unfortunately) walked on 3 Euro a day just fine without asking anyone for money or looking for cheap albergues. Most I meet walking on 5 Euros a day or less never asked for money or even expected to sleep indoors.

I have met people asking for money on the camino, those tended to be homeless people (often ex pilgrims - maybe even still pilgrims) who have taken to living along the camino. And as an ex homeless person myself (20 years in doorways) I would rather live rough on camino than in a big city like London, Paris or New York. So I don't blame them. And I can feed us both with my 3 Euro's.

I'm not knocking you c2c, it is just the fact having very little money does not preclude you having a wonderful and spiritual camino.

And a Buen Camino to yourself!
Davey
 

cmk033

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances, Jan 21~Feb 27, 2019
Two things I have to mention about sleeping outsides are camping rules and bathrooms. Walking with little budget is one thing but keeping the camino in condition for others to enjoy must be followed:

Official campsites with services are not very common, often located several kilometers off-route, and are usually more expensive than albergues. Some people fo "free camp" unobtrusively along the camino, either to really streach their budgit or to enjoy solitary nights. If you choose to free camp, check the weather and plase follow Leave No Trace principles rigorously. Camping is not allowed in urban, touristic or military areas, or within 1km of an official site.

Finding restroom when necessary along the camino can be a challenge. Public bathrooms are few and far between. Buy a little something in a bar and use their facilities. When the call of nature comes at an inconvenient time far from any town, please be responsible when how you go in nature. In recent years the quanity if toilet paper and waste visible along the camino has become a problem.
 

xin loi

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Walked May 14, 2014 from St Jean France

starting to walk again August 25, 2016 --SJPDP to Finisterre
walked the camino Frances twice and Portugese once--I think that the Frances is cheaper. I met my wife while walking the Camino Frances in 2016--she was broke and slept in the field/woodss each night--How broke was she? --After finding a zucchini on the path, that was ALL she ate it for THREE days with nothing else
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) portugues(2013)San Salvador (2017)
walked the camino Frances twice and Portugese once--I think that the Frances is cheaper. I met my wife while walking the Camino Frances in 2016--she was broke and slept in the field/woodss each night--How broke was she? --After finding a zucchini on the path, that was ALL she ate it for THREE days with nothing else
Wonderful. May your lives be long and happy together!
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(2006) portugues(2013)San Salvador (2017)
walked the camino Frances twice and Portugese once--I think that the Frances is cheaper. I met my wife while walking the Camino Frances in 2016--she was broke and slept in the field/woodss each night--How broke was she? --After finding a zucchini on the path, that was ALL she ate it for THREE days with nothing else
I had to find out more. What a wonderful story. Amen!
[IMG alt="xin loi"]https://caminoforum-4df7.kxcdn.com/data/avatars/m/35/35049.jpg?1396448494[/IMG]
xin loi
Active Member

Camino(s) past & futureWalked May 14, 2014 from St Jean France

starting to walk again August 25, 2016 --SJPDP to Finisterre
Mar 29, 2017
Last August and September I walked the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Finisterre for the second time. I must admit is was an eye opener for me. On the first walk, I did not walk alone and therefore did not pay much attention to what other hikers were doing. On this last trip I was alone and talked to many , many, walkers. I found out that MOST people sleeping in the fields were not doing it to see the stars--they could NOT afford to stay in even the cheapest albergues. Bought some meals and bought some beds for these people but not for as many as I would liked to help.

When you sit down to a big supper after walking all day, give a thought to a beautiful young German woman I met, who was grateful that for three days she did not go hungry--she had found a Zucchini and a small bag of Chips that had been dropped by another pilgrim.

And for those who have heard my story of last year, I'm going to repeat it again with a better ending.

As I walked along a dirt path on the Camino , I saw a Shell lying in the leaves. Picking it up, I put it into my pocket. About an hour later I met a woman on the trail and after walking with her for an hour, I noticed she did not have a shell on her pack. I asked her why and she replied," I have a friend who is a mystic. She told me to not buy a shell as a man who will be important in my life will give me a shell."

Pulled my extra shell from my pocket and gave it to her. Walked all of the way to the End of the Earth with her.

Sometime around April 20th, 2017 , We will return to the End of The Earth and while there I intend to ask her to marry me.

Like
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2005,2008,2010,2015.camino Portuguese 2007 .primativo2012.camino Norte 2009.sjpdp to finisterre and muxia 2007. Le Puy to jpdp 2006. Via francigena vercelli to Lucca 2014. Lucca to Rome 2016.
:)
I had to find out more. What a wonderful story. Amen!
[IMG alt="xin loi"]https://caminoforum-4df7.kxcdn.com/data/avatars/m/35/35049.jpg?1396448494[/IMG]
xin loi
Active Member

Camino(s) past & futureWalked May 14, 2014 from St Jean France

starting to walk again August 25, 2016 --SJPDP to Finisterre
Mar 29, 2017
Last August and September I walked the Camino Frances from SJPDP to Finisterre for the second time. I must admit is was an eye opener for me. On the first walk, I did not walk alone and therefore did not pay much attention to what other hikers were doing. On this last trip I was alone and talked to many , many, walkers. I found out that MOST people sleeping in the fields were not doing it to see the stars--they could NOT afford to stay in even the cheapest albergues. Bought some meals and bought some beds for these people but not for as many as I would liked to help.

When you sit down to a big supper after walking all day, give a thought to a beautiful young German woman I met, who was grateful that for three days she did not go hungry--she had found a Zucchini and a small bag of Chips that had been dropped by another pilgrim.

And for those who have heard my story of last year, I'm going to repeat it again with a better ending.

As I walked along a dirt path on the Camino , I saw a Shell lying in the leaves. Picking it up, I put it into my pocket. About an hour later I met a woman on the trail and after walking with her for an hour, I noticed she did not have a shell on her pack. I asked her why and she replied," I have a friend who is a mystic. She told me to not buy a shell as a man who will be important in my life will give me a shell."

Pulled my extra shell from my pocket and gave it to her. Walked all of the way to the End of the Earth with her.

Sometime around April 20th, 2017 , We will return to the End of The Earth and while there I intend to ask her to marry me.

Like
Oh Kirkie,.a thousand likes.......I can't find the Love it button
What a wonderful story about 2 lovely people
Just goes to show you that not everyone walks with the latest gear or money in their pockets ...they just need to walk the Camino
Thanks for this
Annette
 

Davey Boyd

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
Seven Compostelas in Three years and counting......
Two things I have to mention about sleeping outsides are camping rules and bathrooms. Walking with little budget is one thing but keeping the camino in condition for others to enjoy must be followed:

Official campsites with services are not very common, often located several kilometers off-route, and are usually more expensive than albergues. Some people fo "free camp" unobtrusively along the camino, either to really streach their budgit or to enjoy solitary nights. If you choose to free camp, check the weather and plase follow Leave No Trace principles rigorously. Camping is not allowed in urban, touristic or military areas, or within 1km of an official site.

Finding restroom when necessary along the camino can be a challenge. Public bathrooms are few and far between. Buy a little something in a bar and use their facilities. When the call of nature comes at an inconvenient time far from any town, please be responsible when how you go in nature. In recent years the quanity if toilet paper and waste visible along the camino has become a problem.
All good advice there. If freecamping I tend to sleep before a village rather than after one. Then I wake up to a short walk to coffee and a toilet. Those rules you mention are true, but outside of those areas no one really bothers as long as you are keeping the place clean. And I will add NEVER light a fire.
 

E V Waight

It's the journey, not the destination.
Camino(s) past & future
September (2017)
Possible September (2018)
Holy Year (2021) (all three Gladys, John and I)
I have just completed the Frances and kept note of all spending. I averaged 17 euros a day - that included always giving at least 5e for donativo bed and 8e/10e for donativo meal, mostly but not always staying in cheapest option and almost always cooking for myself for all meals. I generally stopped for a cuppa once or twice a day. Hope that helps!!
My wife, son and I did SJPP/Santiago in 2017 for approx. 22 Euros per day each. That included all albergues, at least two meals and at least a beer or wine per day! Hope that helps.
 

kelleymac

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
March/April 2015, Late April 2016, Sept/Oct 2017, April 2019.
The food in spain is also much cheaper than in Denmark-- and you can use the kitchens in many of the albergues, and so save on food costs. --Often people make a fine meal by pooling talent and resources. In Carrion, there was a "donate what you could" to the dinner. I took a look at what had already been donated, and then headed out to the store. I ended up buying a loaf of bread, a box of mushrooms, a bottle of wine, and a big bar of chocolate. Dinner was thick lentil soup with hunks of potato and carrot, bread, cheese and meat plates, salad (with mushrooms), and wine. Chocolate and other sweets for dessert. (That night was 5 euros each for my son and me, and about 6 euros for dinner.) I put some more money in the donation box.

Also-- you can wash clothes by hand, or get together with others to share a load in the washing machine and dryer.

I wish you a buen camino.
 

Bob P

Member
Camino(s) past & future
First timer, leaving April 3rd from SJPDP
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts
are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
I walked the Frances from SJPDP to Sarria very comfortably for under 30 euros/day. I stayed in alberques. Some municipal, some church, some donativo. Ate some meals communal cooking, some meald at bars or restaurants.
I had a fantastic journey.
From Sarria to SDC, it got more expensive and more commercial and my wife joined me, so the cost went up closer to 50 euros/ day/ person.
What some people seem to be reacting to in your question is that we have met people on the trail that are trying to travel at the expense of others. Not saying you sound like that kind of person, but there are quite a few that are "spoilers" to the experience. Some were in my Camino circles (not calling them family) and I heard their discussions trying to figure out how not to pay for anything when they could get away with it. They never left any donation at donativo and just acted like they made deposits. Kind of a bummer to meet those types and so it is a bit of a "sore spot" for some folks.
I met people that would tent a night or find absolute cheapest beds, then stay at nicer (15euro) alberque for refreshment. They were usually great cooks in the communal kitchens, so I was happy to buy larger portions of food at the market to make the meals go further. They were doing fine on 20euros/ day or less
Don't take the comments too serious as long as your not one of those "others" :);
 
Camino(s) past & future
Frances(12), Portuguese(13), Finisterre(13), Norte(14Partial), Ingles(17),Via de la Plata(19partial)
Hello!

I have been traveling for years pretty minimally in terms of finances and have become very fascinated with the prospect of going on one of the many trails associated with El Camino. I have no problem camping in a tent but as I’ve had less energy this year from burning out from a ton of work, the prospect of sleeping under a roof in a building actually dedicated to hikers/pilgrims is insanely appealing to me on this adventure.

What I want to know is— which paths/parts are typically the most affordable or even free in terms of accommodation??
You have been given many opinions and options ….. I'd say after walking 6 Camino's in Spain and two in Italy …. What it comes down to is what you want for the evening after your walk each day there are many guide books that will outline what is available in each village, town or city and it's up to you to chose …. Remember nothing is free you can give what you can afford in many places but if you cannot afford a Euro or more then some will be free it is up to your conscience
 

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