Mozambique Budget & Trip Report

moz-trip-report-2

 


In this post you’ll find our itinerary, lodging info and costs from our month of traveling overland through Mozambique from September 30th to October 29th, 2014.


 

Tracking the Expenses

All of the following information comes as a result of tracking our expenses with the superb mobile app MoneyControl. I had paid for the full version of both the mobile and desktop apps, but have found that the mobile app is really all you need, as you can generate reports right on your phone and export them in a variety of ways. Trail Wallet and other apps have been recommended to us (and I’ve tried them all) but have found that I prefer the ease of use, interface and reports of MoneyControl. The one advantage that Trail Wallet has is the ability to deal with a variety of currencies and conversions, but the functionality is currently limited. For Lori and I, everything eventually gets converted back into USD anyways, given that that is what we’re generally paid in and what our bank statements reflect, so I find it easiest to convert the amount to USD before entering it into the app. A huge advantage of this is that it gives you an immediate sense of how much you’re actually spending, as £4 (British Pounds) can seem appropriate for a grande gourmet coffee (until you realize that’s US$6.40!), and so on.


 

Itinerary

We spent 30 days total in Mozambique, traveling from Ressano Garcia (South Africa border) in the far south to Pemba in the far north. We utilized a variety of transportation including chapas (shared minivan taxis), machibombos (large coach-style buses), Tanzanianos or China chapas (shared minibuses), dhows (traditional East African sailboats), motorized dhows, ferries, private taxis, canoe, and finally, jet airliner from Pemba onward to Tanzania. And of course, we covered countless miles on foot.

Related Article:  Inhambane City
DATELOCATIONSTAYTRAVEL TIME (TO) 
30 Sep - 06 OctMaputo6 nights9 hrs via InterCape bus from Nelspruit, RSA
06-08 OctInhambane2 nights6.5 hrs via Post Bus + 0.5 hrs via ferry
08-10 OctLinga Linga2 nights0.5 hrs via ferry + 0.5 hrs via chapa + 1.5 hrs via dhow
10-13 OctTofo Beach3 nights0.5 hrs via canoe + 0.5 hrs chapa + 0.5 hrs ferry + 1 hr chapa
13-15 OctBeira2 nights10 hrs via Post Bus
13-15 OctQuelimane2 nights8 hrs via Nagi Bus
15-17 OctNampula1 night6 hrs via Nagi Bus (usually takes 8-10)
18-23 OctMozambique Island5 nights4 hrs via “Tanzaniano” chapa
23-29 OctPemba area7 nights1.5 hrs via chapa + 5.5 hrs via bus
 


 

Lodging

We stayed in 11 different guesthouses, lodges and backpackers in Mozambique. Average cost of accommodation per night for two people was $37 USD, with our most expensive lodging being $51 in Nampula (a big surprise!), and our cheapest being $23 in Linga Linga. Best value for the money was Pensão Ideal — Double room with AC and en suite bathroom in a clean and safe guesthouse is pretty hard to beat in Moz. Most overpriced was Ruby’s in Nampula, but all accommodation in Nampula seemed much more expensive than average.

LOCATIONPROPERTYRATENOTES
Maputo (1)Base BackpackersUS $39double / shared bath
Maputo (2)Base BackpackersUS $262x dorm beds / shared bath
Inhambane CityPens‹o MachibomboUS $39double / shared bath
Linga LingaFunky Monkey / Lucio's PlaceUS $23double cabana / shared bath
Tofo BeachFatima's NestUS $44double cabana / shared bath
BeiraHotel SavoyUS $26twin double / shared bath
QuelimanePens‹o IdealUS $26AC double / en suite bath
NampulaRuby Backpackers NampulaUS $51double / shared bath
Ilha de MoambiqueMooxeleliyaUS $32double / en suite bath
Pemba (1)Pemba Dive & Bush CampUS $40double "backpackers" / shared bath
Pemba (2)Residencial LysUS $42AC double / en suite bath
Pemba (3)Pens‹o BaiaUS $26double / shared bath
Related Article:  Maputo: Day 1

Wi-fi was difficult (more like nearly impossible) to come by in Moz. The Base had a very slow computer to get online with (and Pemba Dive & Bush Camp also supposedly had one, but we never used it). Fatima’s Nest in Tofo and Ruby’s in Nampula both had wifi in common areas, but from 7pm to 7am only.

Internet cafes and restaurants/cafes with wi-fi were very hard to come by. The best options for free wi-fi were Caffettissimo in the top of the Polana Shopping Center in Maputo, Bistro Pescador near the pier in Inhambane City and O Escondidinho in Ilha de Moçambique.

If you’re planning a stay of any length in Mozambique, need to stay connected, and have an unlocked GSM world band smart phone (like an unlocked AT&T or T-Mobile iPhone, if you live in the U.S.), it pays to get an mCel SIM card and add a data package. SIM cards cost about US$1.50 and can be purchased from any mCel store or any number of vendors on the street. 100MB costs 40Mts (US$1.29).

 


 

Costs

The following is an overview of our costs (for TWO travelers — a husband/wife couple) in each location we visited. The table does not include transport or communication costs or incidentals such as water, toilet paper, etc. — but should hopefully give you some idea of what it might cost to travel through these parts of Mozambique on a month-long overland trip in shoulder season.

Average spent per day (for two people), categorized by DAY, FOOD, LODGING, and SIGHTSEEING:

Related Article:  Maxixe!
LOCATIONTOTALFOODLODGINGSIGHTSEEING
MaputoUS $94 /dayUS $37 /dayUS $56 /dayUS $1 /day
Inhambane Province (I'bane, Tofo, Linga...)$65$28$37$0
Sofala & Zambezia Provinces (Beira, Quelimane...)$52$26$26$0
Nampula Province (Nampula, Ilha...)$68$30$35$3
Cabo Delgado Province (Pemba...)$63$30$33$0
OVERALL AVERAGES$68 /day$30 /day$37 /day$1 /day

Overall, transportation ran us US$260 for two people to get from Maputo to Pemba and everywhere in between. Transport was almost always shared public transport, with the few rare exceptions of 3am private-hire taxis to bus stations.

Mission: Ridiculous (Part II)
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