What does it cost, and how do I get money?

Probably €30 is a good daily figure to budget for, you can spend less if you look for the cheapest accommodation, assemble your own picnic lunches and self-cater, or you can spend rather more if you eat out all the time, treat yourself to regular nights in a hotel or casa rural and pay to have your luggage carried.

Albergues usually vary between €5 - €15 per person per night, hostals, pensiones, casa rurales, hotels €20 plus per person per night, depending on the quality of the establishment and whether you have a single or shared room.

But what about this free accommodation people talk about? Well, there are indeed some free municipal albergues on the Vía de la Plata. There are many other albergues, usually those run by pilgrim assocations or religious groups, which do not charge a fixed price but are run on a voluntary contribution basis (aportación voluntaria)  This does not mean they should be regarded as free, as is sometimes stated in various online forum comments, rather that they rely on voluntary donations to keep open and that it is up to you to ensure you pay a fair contribution for your stay.

The pilgrim menu is anything between €9 and €15, breakfast maybe €3 and lunch maybe another €5.

Don’t forget to include in your budget extra purchases such as drinks, various toiletries and pharmacy products and to have access to an emergency fund to cover unexpected events such as extra rest days in a hotel, or replacing lost or damaged kit.

There are banks and cashpoints in all of the cities and towns, also some of the larger villages. Tell your bank and credit card company that you will be away.  Consider getting a currency card which can be preloaded with a set amount of cash for a fixed exchange rate and then topped up by text, phone or internet as often as you need.  Here is some information on currency cards to explain where to get them and how they work.

Finally - use ATMs when the bank is open, if possible.  If your card is "eaten" by the machine you should be able to get it back quickly....

©CSJ

Confraternity of Saint James,
27 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NY, United Kingdom.
Tel: (+44) (0)20 7928 9988
Company Limited by Guarantee, Registered no. 4096721 — UK Registered Charity no. 1091140
Founded in 1983 to promote the pilgrim routes to Santiago de Compostela

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