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Canada Rockies was not in my bucket list but since I don't have any plan for a long holiday especially after Government added more joint holidays during the Eid Fitri, I might as well spend it well after being deducted for unpaid leaves that have to be taken. This is my unusual trip which normally I will plan well ahead, after comparing a few possible destinations with the benefit of holding a few valid visa, I decided to apply for Canada Visa as that is the most attractive one, but travel in two surely will boost up the budget, luckily ranselahok decided to join us last minute after returning for his Europe trip. More about his side of story and how nervous of getting visa and tickets last minute, you may read here.
Is it expensive? HELL YESS!!! as the cost of living is around 81% higher than Indonesia, and travel in summer is even more expensive.
Can we travel on budget? maybe yes, especially if you travel in four, but surely not on accommodation, maybe other things, you may see the tips on how to cost saving here. If we compare the price of hotel on May vs June, you will see it's double up, but since we had bought ticket there is no turning back.
How much is the damage cost of 12 days in Alberta (9th - 21 June 2018)?
Costs below are per person, some are calculated on 2 sharing, some are in 3 sharing for whatever can be shared apart from the bra and undies *euwww*, exchange rate is various from IDR 10,856/C$ - IDR 11,921/C$, it's more expensive on cash spending as the exchange rate of USD to CAD is no benefit to us, Using credit card for all transactions is recommended for better rate.
Car Rental - We rented from Avis via airportrentals.com, with full insurance (read stress free) covered for C$264. We got upgraded to Ford Taurus which included GPS on board, we paid for Hyundai with GPS on tab. But as a result of bigger trunk we have to bear the higher consumption of petrol. ,
National Park Entrance Fee C$ 61.07 Waterton National Park costs 7.8 CAD/person/day and Banff National Parks costs you (group of 2-7 in a single vehicle) costs C$19.60/day may save some money by buying annual pass for C$136.4 per pass if your entrance is more than 7 days in total, and you might sell it although it's not recommended
Activities Fee C$ 66.15 this is depending on activities that you choose, as we only spend on 1 day hiking and sightseeing (including Gondola riding) in Whistler mountain. There are some activities you can do in Columbia Icefield which we skipped because we had experienced glacier in NZ and Glacier Skywalk was not interesting enough for us
Lodging (read motels and lodges), mostly room available in Alberta is 2 queens bed or quardruple room C$936.99
As usual, I always use hotelscombined.com for my travel to compare all the lodging price, but this time mostly I got from booking.com as it was not much listed out due to last minutes booking
Meals and Grocery C$446.6, the cost is actually included tips (like in America, in Canada they also expect gratitude and it is common practice, you can skip this by eating in fast food or counter paid restaurant. This time unlike NZ, we didn't bring our rice cooker and not every hotels offer cooking credential so most of time, we eat like locals (read quite luxury) therefore a little bit more expensive.
Total distance we drove through is around 2,000 km from Calgary - Waterton - Calgary - Banff - Lake Louise - Jasper - Kamploops - Vancouver. The petrol is around C$ 1.29 /L with Fuel Usage: +/- 13.8 L / 100km.
Transport C$82.95 this is because we planned to stay in Vancouver for 3 nights hence returned the car but after found Vancouver is not fun, we diverted to stay 2 nights in Whistler, so its only bus by Pacific Coaches from Vancouver city - Whistler - Airport
Total Cost : C$1,964.76
Average Exchange Rate 11,000/C$ = IDR 21,612,360
Canada Visa 100 CAD online processing + IDR 233,000 VFS Fee
Indonesian need visa to enter Canada but you can process it online, it took 3- 5 working days to get it approved then send it together with passport to VFS to get the visa sticker which took another 2 working days, the cost to have it done by third party is 1.8 million IDR, which is a lot more expensive, but thanks to Henny that help to be the runner to VFS, the visa is valid till the 2nd last day of your passport, not very sure if you can still use it if you change your passport due to run out of pages.
Air Tickets if you can save in flight tickets, it will be a lot as ranselahok has to pay around 20 million in total for the same tickets I got but his Xiamen airlines in SIN-YVR-CGK
Flight CGK- SIN by Batik Air IDR 1,223,220 not the cheapest due to Eid Fitri season
Flight return SIN - YVR (Vancouver) by Xiamen Airlines IDR 10,117,311.42
Flight YVR - YYC (Calgary) by WestJet IDR 1,387,812
Flight SIN - CGK by Lion Air IDR 1,845,200
TOTAL DAMAGED : IDR 37,508,903 (US$ 2,679)
Although Numbeo ranked New Zealand and Finland are more expensive than Canada, but surely our travel budget is not lower than those 2 countries, but our budget is jacked up due to summer so if you would like keep the budget down, you may try to travel in winter moreover Alberta is one of the world winter destination, although some of area can only be enjoyed on summer (some lake is actually melted ice). For us this is expensive but we were thought to live with no excuses and travel with no regrets, at the end let there be no explanations.