Food is the biggest rip off in travel.
BANGKOK, Thailand- Yeah, I still search for cheap food. While saving time often takes precedent over saving money these days, the fact of the matter is that food is one of those things in travel that can be excessively marked up.
I mean, almost anywhere in the world you can get the same meal for X price or X price times two or three. Markups in restaurants are mostly for the decorations and profits for the owners. Unless going for some kind of specialty dish, the food in a nice restaurant generally comes from the same place as that from cheap ones. No, I do not believe fancy decor and well-groomed wait staff makes food taste better, and once you start traveling you quickly discover that the best restaurants are usually the holes in a wall down dark alleys.
Also, long-term readers of this blog know that food is not something I’m willing to splurge for. Food is fuel, food is nutrition, food is the raw material of poop, and that’s all there is to it as far as I’m concerned. So maybe I’m not the best person to judge here.
I’ve mostly been eating 60 baht ($2) bowls of street noodles here in Bangkok. This morning I’m at this restaurant called Noi Kwa Roi, which operates under the slogan, “Everything under 100 baht.”
I ordered a green curry. It came out looking like this:
I couldn’t taste the difference between it and bowls of the same stuff going for twice as much.
About the Author: VBJ
I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. VBJ has written 3657 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.
VBJ is currently in: Astoria, New York
March 6, 2019, 11:07 am
Yeah, I hate those tourist restaurants that just serve you the same things as the local places for 10 times more money. Polished turds of places.
March 6, 2019, 1:56 pm
Come on, you cheap butts, it’s not like spending five bucks in a tourist restaurant that’s actually nice and CLEAN is going to wipe out a budget. I like to know that I’m not getting roach legs in my curry. YUCKKKKKKK!
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