Attention all Forum Users.
We’re working on a brand new shiny tool to make your experience as simple as possible.
Which means the community forums is now read only whilst we work on a new & improved ‘My Contiki’ space.


How much Spending money to take to the USA???

9 Mar 2011 Tina asked


Hello All,

I am planning on doing the best of USA trip that goes for almost 2 weeks and I am trying to work out how much I should save for spending money.
I know the tour covers most meals and tours etc... but would $2000 cover me for spending money? I don't plan on going crazy on clothes shopping etc...just mainly alcohol, going out etc......

  • Read the responses 10 responses so far
  • 6 Apr 2011 BigCountry Williams said

    BigCountry Williams

    It all depends on where you are going. I’m in NYC and spent an easy $100 just in a few hours at the bar.

  • 6 Apr 2011 JamesA said


    i did 2 weeks in USA last November and I spent about $3,000 there.

    Remember alcohol is a lot cheaper there and in bars/clubs they free pour if you’re a good tipper.

  • 6 Apr 2011 BigCountry Williams said

    BigCountry Williams

    everything depends on where you go. In NYC they do not free poor. A Vodka and cranberry is about $8, AN Long Ice tea is about $12. A Margarita is about $10.

  • 7 Apr 2011 happy go said


    wow thats good to know alex i am heading over to new york in 6wks cant wait
    any thing else i should know before i get over there

  • 11 Apr 2011 Explorer1241657 said


    I really depends on where you are planning to spend your money.
    Hanging out in a bar is one thing, but there are huge differences between the different districts.
    Manhattan is of course a lot more expensive than Brooklyn, for example.
    Also, if you do want to do some shopping, beware that you do not get ripped of or fall for fake stuff.
    There are a lot of shops offering brand stuff like designer clothes, fancy luxury watches or jewelry,
    but you have to make sure, they do not sell you cheap replicas!

  • 2 May 2011 Explorer1246693 said


    Use sites like to find reviews on great places to eat where ever you are also, I’d search out happy hour .. m-f 5-7pm normally you can find great deals on food and drinks.
    If you are going to nightclubs, you have COVER sometimes. If you are frugal, u can easily save by eating some protein bars and maybe pre drinking :) good luck. I lived in NYC, and if you can figure out the subway, you can save big time. Buy your self a pass for a few days… u can always re-load the card. People are actually REALLY nice, so just ask.. HEY HOW DO I GET HERE…. I think if you do that, you can probably get by in NYC on $80-$100 a day. CHINA TOWN is awesome.. go to 21 MOTT ST. Voted BEST CHINESE FOOD IN THE USA! There may be a line, but its worth it.. you eat around 12pm you won’t be hungry till the next day, and you have all of NYC to walk it off :) YUMMMM
    my other affordable place is in the ST. MARKS PLACE area, between SOHO and Midtown, funky area, affordable food and drinks.. bars etc.

  • 5 May 2011 cdm115 said


    When I used to work in Downtown Manhattan we would at at 69 Bayard St in Chinatown. It’s a hole in the wall but so is most of Chinatown.

    I worked around St. Marks Place too, it is a trendy area and more affordable. St. Marks Place covers what would be East 8th Street in the East Village. At Avenue A is Tompkins Square Park – famous for it’s riots in the 80’s. I wouldn’t bother with the park, it’s not terribly nice and there are a lot of homeless people hanging out in it. It’s not dangerous, but there are much better parks in the city. But the heart of St. Marks Place is really between 1st and 2nd Avenues. Over there is also K-Mart incase you forgot anything.

  • 17 Aug 2011 Tina said


    Thanks so much for all your responses guys. I’m thinking i’ll take about $2500. That’s all I can pretty much afford anyway. I know i wont go crazy on shopping and buy up big on big name brands etc… but I do want to make the most of New York and buy some clothes and stuff to bring back home, so hopefully I should be ok. Thanks heaps for the giude to where to eat to save money. That’s a big help. Cheers guys!

  • 19 Oct 2012 shonna said


    Hey Guys,

    I know this post is really old but how was the tour? I plan on taking 6K cause i am going crazy shopping then I’ll wear 10x layers of clothing & jewelry on the way home =D

We are no longer accepting new responses to this discussion thread.

More Discussions



Visas? Money? Where to go? Chat to us about travel.