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Monaco on a budget

The real title of this blog should be, lol you’re poor.

I can’t say I’ve ever felt poor, but I did in Monaco.  Home to more millionaires and billionaires than any other place in the world I certainly felt like a pauper.

How did I afford this leg of my journey?  Well I didn’t.  Here’s how I did ‘Monaco on a budget’ which is really just an oxymoron.

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Lodging
First, I used points to book my entire hotel stay! I used my Expedia gold points to book one of their VIP collection hotels, and for three nights it was a whopping $647 in a standard room. Luckily due to my gold status and shameless bragging, I got my first ever legit upgrade to a junior suite!  I looked up the cost for this suite, it is $280 a night so that alone would’ve cost $840 for THREE nights!

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Just to give you a glimpse into my budget, my lodging should stay under $1500 a month.  So nearly half of budget swallowed in three days wouldn’t cut it. There were no discount hotels or cheap airbnb’s that I could find at all.  In fact, you can just eliminate the word ‘discount’ from your vocabulary when referring to Monaco.

Food

Food is amazing in Monaco! But, I tried to stay within my allotted food budget of €25 a day which seems annoying low for this city but I think I ended up around €35/day with mini bar charges, oops.

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I still ate well, I just split my dinners into lunches as well. I had no shame asking for a takeaway box for my leftovers!  I also discovered the hotel gym had tons of complimentary fresh fruit and a 24/7 gourmet coffee stand in the hotel bar so … Free breakfast!  I know that sounds so cheap but I’m not a huge breakfast person, the hotel breakfast was €24, and I was way too lazy to go out and wander for breakfast like the poor person I am.

Transport

I walked everywhere, my FitBit was on fire and for the first time ever I was number 1 amongst my friends – this might also be the last.

I took ONE taxi ride, and for about 2 miles it was €16!

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I know you think I am exaggerating, but allow me to dictate a real life conversation with concierge regarding transport to the airport the day of my departure.  My special comments are in {}.
Me: *calls concierge* bounjour, I need to leave for the airport today around 10am.
Concierge: Bonjour Madame. Well you have 3 options. First, there is a helicopter, just a 7 minute flight to the airport, €150. {DUH! Sign me up!}  Second, there’s a private car for €120. Lastly, you can take a taxi for €100.  Each of these are about a 30 minute ride.
Me: Ummm well can I take the train? {I’m considered poor here}
Concierge: The train doesn’t go to the airport from Monaco.
Me: Bus?
Concierge: Yes, but this is a 10 min walk from the hotel.
Me: A ten minute walk sounds very reasonable, what is the cost?
Concierge: Madam I don’t know. {Insert ewww who takes our plush luxury Mercedes buses?}
Me: Ok, thank you.

An hour later, I arrive at the bus station, the luxury bus with wifi arrives on time, direct to the airport,€20.

Monaco is definitely a site to see and I feel lucky that I had the pleasure of staying directly in the principality, but should you choose to visit, be prepared to spend the entirety of your retirement funds.

To see more photos, click here!

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