The only traffic sign you will see on Caye Caulker reads “Go Slow”. This, as it turns out, is very good advice.
Our travels throughout Central America last year brought us to Caye Caulker Belize, where we stayed for two weeks. We would have stayed much longer if time had allowed it, as the island charmed us with its mix of rustic relaxation, laid back vibes, sandy streets, and natural beauty.
Caye Caulker is a beautiful small island with very limited modes of transportation. The only way to get around is by foot, golf cart, or bicycle. So, if you want to get away from the constant drone of machines and automobiles Caye Caulker is most certainly the place to do so. Especially if you want to swim, snorkel, dive, kayak, or wind surf among some of the largest reefs and warmest aqua-blue waters available in the Americas.
Caye Caulker on a Budget
Belize, followed closely by Costa Rica, is the most expensive country for travelers and backpackers in Central America. This is doubly true if you spend most of your time on the Islands off the coast of the mainland. Since almost everything on the island, from food to clothes is imported, prices are inflated accordingly.
So, can you travel to Caye Caulker, Belize on a budget?
Absolutely you can!
Based on our own experiences, it is possible to travel on a budget of $42.00 USD per person a day or less in Caye Caulker if you are careful and manage your money well (especially if you minimize your intake of alcoholic beverages). If you are a low maintenance traveler who is comfortable in a dorm bed and can survive without expensive meals and pricey tours you can keep your expenses down even lower.
While it may seem counter intuitive, cooking your own meals (if you have access to a kitchen in the first place) will not save you much money on Caye Caulker. Unlike virtually every other place we have visited in Latin America cooking actually cost more than eating out. Why is that? Well, being an island Caye Caulker imports just about everything that isn’t fish, so prices are hiked up accordingly. Additionally, there are some great deals to be had on local food, like the delicious stuffed Fry Jacks for $1.50 USD, or the famous “Fran’s BBQ” which sells giant plates of incredible BBQ for $5.00 USD.
Want to book accommodations in Caye Caulker, Belize? We recommend using the following sites:
In order to help you plan your budget we compiled a short price guide for common goods and activities on the island. Here is the breakdown of prices we encountered in Caye Caulker, Belize.
Exchange Rate March 2014 – $1.00 USD = 2 Belize Dollars
- Private Cabana at Ignacio’s for 2 People – 50 Belize ($25.00 USD total or $12.50 USD per person)
- Dorm Bed in a Hostel – 28 Belize ($14.00 USD per person)
- Vegetarian Jerk Plate with Vegetables, Rice, Garlic Bread and Appetizer or Rum Punch- 15 Belize ($7.50 USD)
- Pork Chops, Rice, Garlic Bread and Appetizer or Rum Punch – 18 Belize ($9.00 USD)
- Veggie Bean Burger and Fries – 18 Belize or $9.00 USD
- Fry Jack (Belize Fried Pastry) Stuffed with Eggs and Beans – 3 Belize ($1.50)
- Fish Sandwich and Fries – 20 Belize ($10.00 USD)
- Vegetarian Falafel Sandwich – 8 Belize ($4.00 USD)
- Panty Ripper (Belize Specialty Drink with Pineapple Juice and Coconut Rum) or Rum Punch – 5 to 10 Belize ($2.50 – $5.00 USD)
- Happy Hour Rum and Juice – 3 Belize ($1.50 USD)
- Belikin Beer at a Bar – 5 Belize ($2.50 USD)
- Belikin Beer at a Convenience Store – 4 Belize ($2.00 USD)
- Chips and Salsa – 7 Belize ($3.50 USD)
- Snickers Bar – 2.50 Belize ($1.25 USD)
- Bike Rental – 25 Belize ($12.50 USD) for three day rental
- Kayak Rental – 10 Belize ($5.00 USD) per hour for single, 15 Belize ($7.50) for double
- Poker Game at Sports Bar Entry Fee – 50 Belize ($25.00 USD)
Trivia Night at Sports Bar Entry Fee – Free!
- Airfare from San Pedro to Corozal – 82 Belize ($41.00 USD)
- Boat/Bus Ticket from Caye Caulker to Flores, Guatemala – 64 Belize ($32.00 USD)
- Fee to Exit Belize by Bus – 37.50 Belize ($18.75 USD)
- Doctor Visit for Eye Injury – 72 Belize ($36.00 USD)
Expenses for activities you might want to partake in should not be factored into your daily budget. This makes planning your budget overly complicated, in our opinion. An easier way of going about things is to calculate your minimum daily expenses and then setting aside all left over funds you care to spend into an “activities” pool. Thus on a day when we rented a kayak or had a few extra drinks in the evening we did not consider ourselves over budget even though we spent a bit more, we just subtracted it out of the “activities” pool.
Traveling to Belize? Be sure to check out our Top Ten Caye Caulker list for the best of what Caye Caulker has to offer!
Disclaimer – We have included a few handy little affiliate links in case any of our readers want to book accommodations. We receive a small commission for any sales made, without any additional cost to you, our dear reader.