5 tips for holidaying in Adelaide on a budget

September 30, 2022

Travel anywhere can be expensive. But it doesn’t have to be! With a little insider knowledge, you can holiday on a budget without sacrificing the quality of your experience. And saving a few dollars frees you up to stay longer and travel more.

With that in mind, here are four essential tips to keeping your trip to Adelaide low on cost and high on enjoyment.

1. Shop around for your accommodation.

While hotel options can be at a premium during festival season (late February to mid-March) and the Adelaide Test match (early December), for most of the year you can find great value discounts, bringing down the cost of your stay considerably. While booking websites are a useful starting point, it also pays to check out the sites of individual hotels, with rates that can be even lower or where there are often added inclusions to make your stay better value for money.

2. Be entertained for free.

Adelaide is known for its vibrant arts scene but not all of it comes at a high price. And if you know where to go, you can find some quality entertainment at no cost at all. Our hot tip is the Grace Emily Hotel on a Monday night for Billy Bob’s BBQ Jam. This is where the local music scene congregates for a weekly jam, anchored by an excellent house band in between the revolving sets. Going through to the early hours of the morning it’s a great night out! Other nights of the week there are often free acoustic performances at pubs around town, while Sunday afternoon is a great opportunity for a front bar music session – just check out any Adelaide gig guide for details.

3. Book yourself some budget car rental with Koala.

While you are on holiday, the price of taxis, Ubers, airport transfers and even public transport can really mount up. Add to that, the convenience of being able to really go your own way while on holiday and a car rental completely makes sense. This opens up options that would otherwise not exist for travel beyond Adelaide to regional South Australia, making the most of your visit. And while public transport in Adelaide is not the comprehensive and easy-to-navigate system you might find elsewhere, the city does have relatively convenient and inexpensive parking options when compared to its larger cousins on the eastern seaboard. With competitively priced rates, Koala really does offer car rental on a budget.

4. Utilise the Adelaide Central Markets.

Located between Gouger and Grote Streets in the CBD, the Markets are not only an essential place to visit for any tourist, but also the best destination in town for gourmet foods at a budget price. Whether you are catering for yourself, and in need of quality ingredients at the market stalls, or seeking inexpensive dining options at one of the eateries or food courts in the complex, the Central Markets will have you devouring delicious meals at a low cost. It also helps that Chinatown is located just outside the Markets, providing further fantastic options for quality eating on a budget.

5. Get to the beach.

Adelaide and its surrounds have some truly stunning beaches to be enjoyed at no cost at all. During the warmer months the coast offers fun and relatively safe swimming, while the stretches of sand are great for walking during winter. If you like a bustling beach, Glenelg is the tourist drawcard with its plentiful café and bar options, while just north of there, West Beach makes for quieter enjoyment. But if you want something truly stunning, head further south to discover the natural beauty of Aldinga, Sellicks or Maslins.