How to Budget for a Cabo Vacation
Cabo is one of Mexico’s great destinations. It’s famous for its Pacific Ocean beaches, dramatic coastline and rich marine life – it’s a great place for whale watching or swimming with whale sharks. There’s no shortage of things to see and do in Cabo for first-timers. Cabo is a cheaper destination than you can find in Florida – but that’s not the same as free or necessarily cheap.
An important part of any trip is to budget it well. One of the easiest ways to do this is to stay at one of Cabo’s all-inclusive resorts (and they have an almost perfect number of them). Other travelers would like to go their own way and do their own things, and avoid all-inclusive resorts. For these travelers in particular, planning and budgeting is important. Whenever you budget for a trip, you have to round up because the expenses are very often more expensive in real life.
Daily Expenses and Cost of Living in Cabo, Mexico
Since Cabo is in Mexico, prices are generally lower than in the United States. According to Numero, here are some prices for basic things to give an idea of what prices to expect.
- Inexpensive restaurant meals: $9.00 (range $6.50 to $10.00)
- Meal for 2, 3-course meal, mid-range restaurant: $60.00
- McDonald’s McMeals: $6.68
- Domestic beer: $1.50 (0.5 liter draw)
- Rent 3 Bedroom Apartment: $1,050 (downtown)
- Rent 1 Bedroom Apartment: $585 (to downtown)
Budgetyourtrip.com calculates that visitors need to spend about $95 per day while vacationing in Cabo. This is an average daily price derived from other visitors. They state that travelers tend to spend around $38 a day on meals and $18 on local transportation. The average hotel price for a couple is around $85.
Average spending in Cabo:
- Meal: $36 per day
- Transportation: $18 per day
- Lodging: $85.00 per day per couple
In total, a vacation for two for a week will likely cost around $1,329.
Other Factors Affecting Cabo’s Budget
It would be a shame to visit Cabo and not go whale watching or swimming with whale sharks – so find all the activities you want and add them to your expense.
- Point: Always over budget than under budget
Plus, none of this includes the cost of international flights – these can vary wildly depending on the time of year and where you’re flying from. Driving to Cabo with your own car is also an option, but it’s about a 22-hour drive from San Diego.
- Flights: Vary according to origin and season
- Cheapest months: august and september
If one is looking for the time to visit Cabo that offers the best deals, then go from May to September. From this time, the absolute best rates are in May, August and September. During the months of August and September, you may be able to benefit from attractive discounts, even at the best resorts. The catch is that it is the rainy season, so the forecast may be rain with the change of hurricanes.
Book an all-inclusive resort in Cabo
Perhaps the easiest way to manage your budget is to book an all-inclusive resort in Cabo. An example is Riu Palace in Cabo San Lucas. They offer four-night all-inclusive packages that include international flights. These plans can start as low as $869 but vary widely.
The Riu Palace is located just three miles from downtown Cabo San Lucas and has everything one needs for a great vacation in Baja, California. It has pools, hot tubs, unlimited access to Splash Water World, beachfront access, and six restaurants to choose from.
The restaurants include everything from Japanese cuisine to Mexican cuisine to Italian cuisine and a selection of bars.
The all-inclusive package includes things like:
- Alcoholic beverages
- Meals at the resort
- Jacuzzis, sauna, pool bar
They have activities like sailing and snorkeling as well as motorized water sports (although these may incur additional costs).
- One-week all-inclusive stay: Ball-Park $1,500 to $3,000 per person
These packages can vary wildly, so it’s hard to make many generalizations about price, but a week’s stay at any of the resorts in Cabo with flights from New York in October costs between $1,500 and $3,000 per person.