50 Things $1 Will Get You Around the World
Outside of fast food value menus and dollar stores, there's not much you can get for $1 in the United States. But in other countries, you can really stretch those hundred pennies to get a better bang for your buck.
Hungary: Half a bottle of red wine
While countries on the continent are pretty expensive, Hungary is one of the cheapest places to visit in the European Union. In fact, a cheap half bottle of wine will run you only $1. Don’t miss these 16 bucket-list worthy destinations from around the world.
The Philippines: A foot massage
In the province of Cebu in the Philippines, a 20-minute foot massage only costs $1. You can use the money you saved to enjoy the country’s other beauties, like its beaches, islands, oceans, and food.
Venezuela: A gallon of gas
A gallon of gas in Venezuela is only about 38 cents, so you can get a little more than 2.5 gallons for your car for just $1. But before you fill ‘er up, check out the real difference between unbranded and branded gasoline. It may surprise you!
Hong Kong: A trip to mainland China
Hong Kong is one of the most expensive cities throughout Asia, with the average annual income hovering around $48,000, so $1 doesn’t really go far in this Chinese region. However, you can also buy a round-trip ferry ticket from the city to the China Mainland for $1 and get a priceless view of Hong Kong’s iconic skyline along the way. Find out the most popular travel destinations in Asia.
Thailand: A bowl of noodles
Since the cost of living in Thailand is low (at least outside of Bangkok), you have lots of options for quick, low-cost meals. The country practically invented street cart dining, and you can’t go wrong with a bowl of noodles, especially for the low price of $1. Thailand is so inexpensive, in fact, that it’s one of the 11 most unforgettable bucket list trips you can take that won’t break the bank.
India: 10 cups of chai
Chai, or tea, is widespread throughout India and Pakistan; you can find it anywhere from a local street vendor to an upscale restaurant. The average price for a cup of chai is about 6 Rupees, or about 10 cents, each. You can buy a cup for yourself and nine of your friends!
New York City: Slice of pizza
New York City has some of the best pizza in the United States. You can find a slice of the good stuff on virtually any block through the five boroughs. In fact, pizza is so widespread that you can buy a slice for as little as $1 in some of the city’s busiest sections like Times Square, Midtown, and St. Mark’s Place.
Australia: Bottle of white wine
Much like the United States and Europe, Australia is a pretty expensive country to live or vacation. However, there are a number of places, including Melbourne’s Preston Market, where you can score a bottle of white wine for only $1. Now that’s cheaper than bottled water!
One of the main attractions of the South American country is its wonderful food. You can buy an arepa con queso (a cornmeal cake with cheese) for about 2,700 Colombian pesos from a street vendor. (That may sound like a lot, but it’s actually $1.) You can also buy a cup of coffee, a liter of bottled water, or half a dozen eggs for only $1 or less. Before you visit, did you know Colombia is one of the countries with the most airports in the world?
Peru: Aji de Gallina
Street vendors in Peru sell Aji de Gallina for only $1. Aji de Gallina is a chicken dish made with aji amarillo peppers, which is turned into a cream sauce with ground walnuts and served over rice with boiled yellow potatoes. Hungry yet?
Philippines: Tanduay Rum
In the Philippines, alcohol is pretty inexpensive. You can buy a small bottle of Tanduay Rum for only $1, or about 53 Filipino Pesos. Also, for $1, you can buy two bottles of San Miguel beer, the country’s official beer. Speaking of beer, don’t miss the 19 beers every beer-lover has to try.
Vietnam: 40 quail eggs
One dollar gets you a lot in Vietnam: a full day bicycle rental, seven liters of drinking water, or two chilled Halida beers. And one of the strangest thing you can buy is 40 quail eggs. We’re not sure why you need 40 quail eggs in your life, but why wouldn’t you?
Shanghai: Five vegetable dumplings
Dumplings can be found everywhere in China; they’re cheap to make and can be eaten for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You can buy five vegetable dumplings from a food stand in Shanghai for about $1. Speaking of Shanghai, the Chinese city is also the home of the world’s largest Starbucks store—good luck finding anything there for under a buck!
Australia: McDonald’s slushie
There are different menu items at McDonald’s from all around the world. You can buy a large slushie or frozen Coke for only $1 at McDonald’s Australia, which is known as Macca’s. If you’re a fan of the Golden Arches, you’ll definitely want to check out these 75 mind-blowing facts about McDonald’s.
Gambia: Two pounds of potatoes
Gambia is one of the most inexpensive countries in Africa—and the world. A loaf of bread is only 15 cents, while you can buy about two pounds of potatoes for just $1.
Pakistan: A dozen eggs
The average income in Pakistan is just over $264 a month, so natives really have to work hard to make their money stretch. Eggs are pretty cheap, selling for about $1 for a dozen. You can also buy about two-and-a-half pounds of rice for only $1 in Pakistan. Next time you make some eggs for breakfast, try it with a pinch of Himalayan Pink Salt—it’s from Pakistan.
Croatia: A scoop of ice cream
In Croatia, you can buy one giant scoop of ice cream from Ledo, the country’s largest manufacturing company, for only $1. The company’s ice cream was named the world’s best in 2013, so it’s well worth your pennies. Ice cream lovers, check out our list of the best ice cream shops in every state.
While you really can’t get much in Slovakia for $1, you can buy a beer at a bar in the country’s capital city of Bratislava for the surprisingly low cost of a buck. You can also buy about two pounds of potatoes or a liter of milk for just $1.
South India: Three pounds of rice
Rice is so cheap in South India that it only costs about $1 for about three pounds. Local rice-based dishes include serving it with rasam, sambar, curd, and papad, or on a sweet banana leaf.
Egypt: Koshary plate
Since many parts of Egypt are popular tourist destinations, there are not a lot of places where you can buy anything for just $1. However, outside of the tourist areas, you can buy a regional dish called a koshary plate for only $1. The meal consists of rice, lentils, spaghetti, and onions covered in tomato sauce. You can use the money you saved to stay at one of the world’s most luxurious hotels and resorts.
Nigeria: Three cans of Coke
If you live in Nigeria, you can buy three cans Coca-Cola or a loaf of bread for just $1. Or you can pick up a pack of cigarettes for about 56 cents (though we advise against smoking, no matter where in the world you are).
Turkmenistan: Movie tickets
The average price of tickets for first-run movies in Turkmenistan is about $1. However, the average monthly salary is only about $79. Even though the movie tickets are cheap, don’t forget the rules of movie theater etiquette that everyone should follow.
Thailand: One hour of cell phone time
Thailand offers one hour of talk time on cell phones with a 1-2-Call SIM card. In addition, you can tether your phone to a laptop for one hour of Internet use for just a buck. Here are other strategies for staying connected for less while on the road.
Hungary: Coffee and pastry
Hungry in Hungary? Some cafés offer a coffee and pastry combo for only $1, or you can buy a large baguette, or about two pounds of fruit for just a buck. You can also buy half-a-pint of beer for only 80 cents. While Hungary is the home of very inexpensive coffee, check out the truth about the world’s most expensive coffee.
United States: AriZona Iced Tea
For more than 15 years, a 23.5 oz can of AriZona Iced Tea has been priced at 99 cents. According to co-owner Spencer Vultaggio, the everyday low price is part of the company’s marketing and brand awareness strategy. “We feel like it’s more important to spend money on something that our customer really cares about, instead of buying billboards or putting our cans in the hands of some celebrity for a few minutes,” said Vultaggio to Thrillist.
Nepal: Five momos
Momos are traditional dumplings made with goat, lamb, veggies, pork, or chicken that are steamed or fried. These dumplings make the perfect treat for breakfast, lunch, or dinner and are easy to find around the country; you can buy a plate of five momos for only $1.
Vienna: Bottle of wine
There is not much you can buy in Vienna for $1, but you can get yourself a bottle of cheap Italian wine, a croissant, or a Kornspitz rye pastry for the low, low price of just a buck. Another money-saving tip is to save your visit to the Museum of Applied Arts for a Saturday, because that’s when it’s 100 percent free.
Colombia: Six empanadas
The most popular street food in Colombia is the empanada, which is a dumpling-like pocket that is either fried or grilled. They are made from corn flour with shredded beef, chicken, potatoes, cheese, rice, or ground beef inside. You can get one for about 17 cents or a plate of six empanadas for only $1.
Turkey: Public transportation
For just a buck, you can take public transportation from Istanbul to Kadıköy, which is located on the Asian side of the city. Once you’ve finished touring around, take a train ride to the city’s historic center in Sultanahmet. Find out why Istanbul made our list of best European destinations for a gorgeous fall honeymoon.
While Dubai is the largest and most expensive city in the United Arab Emirates, you can still buy delicious street food for really cheap, like a chicken or beef shawarma for about $1, or Iranian flatbread with cheese for less than 90 cents. Dubai is also the home of one of the most Instagrammed hotels.
Portugal: Two cups of coffee
Although most countries in the European Union are pretty expensive, there are a number of reasonably priced goods and services in Portugal. For example, you can buy two cups of coffee for only $1 or almost a half-pound of cheese for just a buck! No wonder Portugal made our list of one of the best places to go for your money.
Tanzania: Chipsi Mayai
In Tanzania, you can buy a traditional Chipsi Mayai, a simple potato-egg omelet that’s deep-fried, from a number of local street vendors for only 1,500 Tanzanian Shillings, or just 90 cents. Chipsi Mayai can also be served with rice or ugali with fish and beans. And while you’re in this country on Africa’s east coast, don’t miss out on spending the night in one of these overwater bungalows that are truly like paradise on Earth.
South Korea: Veggie kimbap rolls
Korean kimbaps are essentially vegetarian sushi: They feature various Korean vegetables like yellow pickled radish, spinach, and sliced carrots, along with eggs spread across seaweed and rice, that is then rolled and cut into bite-sized pieces. A full roll only costs about 900 Korean Won, or about $1. Find out why South Korea is one of the ten places in the world that are getting more popular by the minute.
The Philippines: Two-and-a-half pounds of rice
The Philippines is the home of the Banaue Rice Terraces, which are a collection of rice paddies on the side of a mountain. It’s considered the “Eighth Wonder of the World.” Since rice is so widespread in the country, it’s also very cheap to buy. For only $1, you can buy two-and-a-half pounds of rice. While rice is very cheap in the Philippines, don’t get duped and miss out on the most overpriced foods you’ll find on restaurant menus.
Lithuania: A trip from the airport to downtown Vilnius
From the moment you get off the airplane in Lithuania, you can see how inexpensive it is to live and play in the Eastern European country. For example, just taking the train from Vilnius Airport to the Vilnius City Centre is only 72 Euro cents, or 89 cents. You could use the money you saved to visit one of the wackiest theme parks in the world, also in town.
Finland: Public restroom
If you have $1 and have to use the restroom, you’re in luck: public toilets throughout Finland costs about a buck. Unlike in the United States, most public restrooms in Finland require a small fee for entry. However, public toilets are much, much cleaner. Find out why public toilet seats are shaped like a “U.”
Sweden: A Piggelin ice cream ice pop
Introduced in 1972, the Piggelin ice pop is one of the most inexpensive treats from the GB Glace ice cream company in Sweden; one Popsicle only costs about $1. After you’ve finished your icy treat, check out the handy ways you can use Popsicle sticks to solve all your problems.
South Korea: Eight minutes of karaoke
There are a lot of karaoke bars scattered through Seoul in South Korea, so finding a place to sing and drink with your friends and family can be really easy and cheap. Karaoke rooms generally go for 6,000 to 30,000 Korean Won (about $5.50 to $27) an hour, so you can get 8 minutes of karaoke time for only $1. But did you know karaoke is one of the 15 easy ways to burn calories without even noticing?
If you find yourself in the Basque region in northern Spain, you can buy a pintxo is only $1. A pintxo is a traditional Spanish snack made with chicken, fish, or beef, Spanish vegetables, and pickles served on top of crusty bread. (The word is used interchangeably with the more familiar tapas in some parts of the country.) While you’re in Spain, be sure to check out one of the wackiest places you can rent on Airbnb right now.
Vietnam: A bowl of pho
One of the most iconic foods in Vietnam is pho, a broth-based and rice noodle dish made with thinly sliced chicken, beef, or duck, and fish sauce and fresh veggies, topped with bean sprouts, chili peppers, and mint or basil. You can find pho just about anywhere in the country—at a crazy good price: One bowl of the good stuff goes for about 22,000 Vietnamese dong, or just $1. Psst…Vietnam is one of the world’s fastest-growing tourism destinations.
France: A baguette
There’s nothing more stereotypical and romantic than drinking a glass of red wine and eating a tasty and freshly baked baguette under the Eiffel Tower when in Paris. Luckily, that baguette won’t cost you a lot of money: Baguette usually cost about 50 cents to $1 in France. While you’re on that side of the pond, don’t miss out on the most popular travel destinations in western Europe.
Russia: Four pounds of potatoes
The cost of living in Russia is about 40 percent lower than it is in the United States. For $1 (or about 13 Russian Rubles), you can buy about four and a half pounds of potatoes. Speaking of Russia, it’s also home to one of the summer destinations that are surprisingly gorgeous in the winter.
Indonesia: A train ticket from Bogor to Jakarta
If you’re traveling by train from Bogor to Jakarta in Indonesia, it would only cost you 10,000 Indonesian rupiah, or 74 cents in a car without air-conditioning. We suggest paying the extra 3,000 rupiak (22 cents) to upgrade to an air-conditioned one. The train ride is over two-and-a-half hours long, so it’s money well spent to stay cool in Indonesia’s jungle-like climate. And while you’re in Indonesia, check out this rainbow-colored town that’s almost too stunning to be real.