Budget Barcelona: the best guide to save money

Do you want to enjoy a city like Barcelona but don’t have enough money? The Catalan capital is not an expensive treat if we know how to plan our trip, so if you have a reduced budget to travel but don’t want to miss the opportunity to enjoy it without restrictions, we offer below some practical tips to fully live what this magnificent city has for you.

First step: planning the trip

The key to this and other trips, besides not choosing an expensive destination, lies in planning it with enough time and without too many date limitations. Thus, we must avoid going to a place during a big event or from Friday to Sunday, as this is known by all airlines and they usually raise their prices.

To do this, before booking your holidays, visit a flight website and check the option “I am flexible with the dates” that many incorporate or use the “whole month” view in order to see the highest and lowest prices, and then choose the dates depending on the results.

Once you have selected the dates, we must find the accommodation. As we want to travel cheap but enjoy the pleasure of traveling, we can skip hostels. The best option is to find cheap apartments in Barcelona that you can rent for days, so we can get the luxury of a comfortable home where we can also cook and have the breakfast included in the price.

                                                                             Image: tripadvisor.com

Second step: enjoy the trip

Now that you have booked the flight tickets and the accommodation, we only have to worry about the budget for cultural activities, transportation and food.

Once you get to the airport, the best option is to buy a T10 transport card that can be purchased at the train station of the Terminal 2 or in any underground station. Important: the ticket for the underground from the airport is more expensive than buying a 10-trip card and using one for the train.

When you arrive to the center of Barcelona, you can plan the meals comfortably from your apartment and buy food in any nearby supermarket and prepared it at home. Then you can have it there or enjoy it in a picnic in one of the many parks in the city. We recommend Montjuïc and Park Güell, since they have excellent views of Barcelona. The Citadel Park is also a good option if you are visiting the Gothic Quarter and its surrounding since we’ll have the Arc de Triomphe waving us.

Lastly, regarding the cultural plans, if you are in the city on a Sunday, there are several museums (MNAC, Picasso, MACBA…) that are free on the first Sunday of the month or after three o’clock any given Sunday and they really worth a visit.

What about Gaudí? The architectural gems that the Catalan genius created are usually quite expensive, but if we really want to visit them, we recommend a tourist ticket that lowers the price (there are tickets for 30 euros that include a visit to La Pedrera, whose cost exceeds the 20 euros) or considering the following list of his most famous works:

  • The Sagrada Familia is spectacular both inside and outside, so your visit may be justified.
  • La Pedrera and Casa Batlló share certain characteristics. If you are really interested in them, we recommend to visit one and enjoy the impressive façade of the other.
  • Park Güell: The monumental part of Park Güell (and the only one that is not free) is spectacular and breathtaking, but may not be large enough to make it worth paying the ticket. You can see some of his greatest hits from outside (and free), such as the famous dragon from the door or the mosaic benches from the top of the park that you can access totally free.