How to Visit Rwanda on a Budget
If you’re trying to keep costs down, the best time to explore Rwanda is during the low visiting season, which usually runs from April to mid-September.
The weather is quite warm around this time, and more importantly, the cost of exploring is cheaper as there are fewer people in the national parks. If you are visiting Rwanda on public holidays (like New Years) or during high seasons (like Christmas), then be prepared to spend a lot of money.
If you are traveling to Rwanda and are looking for an economical option, consider booking through a travel agency. Tour operators can be a great way to save money, and they can also be a way to meet people and see places you might not have thought to see.
However, if you prefer more freedom than a guided tour, but still want to navigate the city on a budget, be sure to book your flight in advance. The earlier you book your trip, the better the prices.
Stay in budget hotels. If you’re on a tight budget and want to cut costs, cheap hotels (not Airbnb) are your best options. It’s usually best to stay outside of Kigali, the capital, as it’s quite expensive, but even in Kigali there are cheap hotels for those on a very tight budget.
The best part about these types of accommodations is that they are clean and comfortable, but be sure to book them in advance as they tend to fill up very quickly.
Food is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in a new culture. To save money on meals while traveling in Rwanda, you want to avoid intercontinental dishes as they can be quite expensive.
Local food is more what you should try. It’s delicious, it’s inexpensive, and it lets you experience the country’s unique flavors and culture. You can find sumptuous local food like Ugali at family restaurants or street vendors in Kigali.
Since you are on a budget, you probably won’t get a gorilla safari as it is quite expensive (over $1000 per person).
However, there are many other spectacular things you can do: you can visit Kigali Genocide Memorial, hike volcanoes, go to Nyungwe Forest National Park to see different species of birds and even see the Gisovu tea plantation, go to markets like Nyamirambo market or Gikondo market to buy local products, clothes and other goods, and finally, you can take evening walks for you soak up the beauty of this incredible African country.