Abroad and Broke

Oslo is expensive. People always say that travel is expensive, and that’s just how it is. But Norway is on a different level. Norway is a wealthy country because of their oil reserves. Because of that everything here is more expensive. Lucky for us tourists.

Food in particular is expensive. For the most part, Norway lacks the proper landscape and climate for expansive farmlands like in the States. So much of their food is imported, which unfortunately leaves for heavy shipping costs and avocados that are either rock solid or moldy. On the contrary, fish is quite cheap relative to other food. Fish is to Norwegians as corn is to Americans but here the fish is a hundred times more delicious. You know it was fresh caught that morning. We discussed this last night at a group dinner but I believe the burgers here are better also. Sorry America, Norway has out burgered you. All the burgers here are top notch from the artisan buns to the perfectly grilled beef to the custom made sauce. They use toppings really well and everything just seems to come to harmonize. I’m drooling on my keyboard.

Tipping in Norway is not really a thing. Which is the best! The employees get paid a decent wage and I don’t have to explain to everyone how to calculate 20% on their bill. Also, I don’t have the urge to scrutinize every little detail of my waiters service. I just wait for my food, talk, and eat my food. Additionally, many places let you pay once you order your food so when you have eaten yourself into a sluggish or completely vegetative state you can just leave and burp out your regrets in the comfort of your own home.

Having to feed yourself for a month in a country where the food is already expensive takes a toll. I believe by the time I go home I will have spent $2000 in Oslo. That’s about 16,500 Kroner. Ugh, that hurts to see written down. Initially my budget was $1000 for this trip, give or take a couple hundred for gifts for my friends and family. Now doubling my budget for Oslo I have decided to cancel my trips to France and England I had planned after Norway (There are a lot of other factors such as school workload and general homesickness that led me to this decision but money is the big one). So my advice for anyone trying to budget for their trip to Norway is to establish a budget for food, gifts and entertainment and then double it. Happy spending.