How to do Santorini on a budget.

How to do Santorini on a budget.

Ahh, Santorini. The beautiful Greek Island that has quickly become the bloggers dream, and it's easy to see why. I think it took me about 45 seconds to fall in love with the island, with it's iconic blue domed chapels, the beautiful sunshine, the fabulous food, and the friendliest locals, it's a place I'll most definitely be heading back to soon. Before I went away, whenever I told someone where I was going on holiday, I pretty much had 2 responses;

a) Santorini? Where's that? I haven't heard of it.
b) Omg Santorini. I could never afford to go there!

The chance to visit Santorini, take all of the photographs and explore the little villages with the blue and white buildings is pretty irresistible. And yes, Santorini can be expensive. I think it's seen as a luxurious place to go, and there's definitely a perception that because it's so beautiful, it's gonna cost a fortune! But, we managed to go for 7 nights, with flights, luggage, and transfers included, for less than I pay for a months rent. Yeah. I know. If I'm honest, we couldn't quite believe it either, which was probably why it took us about 4 minutes from searching for a holiday, to booking it!

So, here's how we did Santorini, and how we did it on a budget.

Book with a holiday company

This might not always be the best option, so definitely do your research first, but we booked our holiday through Thomas Cook. Which meant that included within the price was the hotel, flights, transfers and luggage allowance. We basically didn't have to pay, or budget for anything else other than our food!

It also meant that we had a holiday rep at the other end, to give us all the information about the island that we needed, assist us if we needed it, and be there to help us navigate our way through Santorini airport on our way back. If anyone's ever been before, you'll know what I mean!

Find a new hotel

The hotel we stayed in was brand, spanking, new. And I know what you're thinking, 'wouldn't this make it more expensive?'. But, think about it. A new hotel means there's no reviews, no previous happy customers and no, real, reputation for it to bump it's prices up. Which means that although yes, it's a little risk because it might not be exactly what it looks like on the internet, they need to get people through the doors to begin with!

We ended up with a beautiful hotel that had only been open 3 weeks, in a family room with bags of room. Our risk paid off, and yours might just as well!

Stay in the south

If you're not too familiar with the island (we weren't before we visited!) Fira, the capital, and Oia (the small, scenic village where you'll find that picture perfect shot) are both towards the north of the island. Oia, in particular, will be a lot more expensive to stay in, particularly because it's so popular with tourists because of *that* view.

But, it only takes 45 minutes on the local bus, and costs 4 euros each way, to get from the south of the island to the north. So, we decided to stay in a little village called Perissa. It was still beautiful, our hotel was right on the beach, there was an abundance of local restaurants, and transport links were still just as fab. Oh, and the hotel and food prices are half what they are in Oia!

Visit early, or late, in the holiday season. 

...and needless to say, avoid school holidays, if you can! We travelled to Santorini on a Tuesday, in the middle of May. Because this isn't 'peak' holiday season, it meant that the prices were a lot less than they would've been come July and August.

This also meant that the hotel, and the surrounding areas were quiet. Which, for us, was an absolute dream. We wanted a lovely, relaxing holiday, and this was just what we got. No kids, plenty of room around the pool, and always space for us to eat where we wanted! Perfect.

Book last minute 

If I was still in my previous job, I know for a fact that this wouldn't have been possible. But, if you have a job that is pretty flexible, you never know what you might find! Ours wasn't particularly last minute, I mean we booked it with approximately 4 weeks to go, but it was still last minute enough for it to have made a little difference.

Explore as much as you can, on foot 

You can't help but want to explore when you're in Santorini. No matter which village you're in, no matter where you turn, and no matter which alleyway you decide to head down, it'll be beautiful. Make the most of the island being so small and explore as much as you can on foot.

And, like I mentioned, you don't need to book all the expensive excursions. Hop on the local bus, and for 4 euros you can easily get yourself wherever you like. So, go on, and take all the photographs you need. ;)


P.S, if you're looking for this iconic backdrop for your photo's, once you're in the village of Oia, head to the main (albeit still tiny & cobbled!) street, and find the jewellers called Alexandro's. There's an alleyway just to the left of the store, head down here and follow it round to the right! Thank you to Victoria from InTheFrow for this little tip, it saved Tasha and I a lot of walking, and meant we found it before a lot of the other tourists! :)


  1. Santorini looks beautiful, and I have had the impression it is expensive but now I've seen this post I'm hoping I'll be able to do it on a budget one day too! Thank you for your tips!

    Suitcase and Sandals Blog XX

  2. It looked so amazing. Great tips, I booked my last trip with Thomson and doing it through a package completely makes the stresses of holiday disappear!

    Hannah | Oh January

  3. Santorini is gorgeous!! I definitely would expect it to be an expensive holiday so these are brilliant tips :)
    Jennifer x
    Ginevrella | Lifestyle Blog

  4. This has been so useful, whenever I have looked its just been so expensive!

  5. Ahh thank you so much for this post! I visited Santorini years ago, and have been itching to go back but also assumed it would be waay to expensive.

  6. amazing photographs! & great tips! xx


  7. looks amazing! absolutely true tips that would save some money! never going there when it's high seasonXD

    xx from italy
    Cate ღ kate/

  8. I've been wanting to visit Santorini for years now but whenever I've looked it's always been a little on the pricey side. I'll definitely be taking some of these tips next time I'm having a search!

    Jess Who

  9. Amazing place!

  10. Santorini has been a place that I would love to visit but always thought it was far too expensive for my budget, this has really helped! Thank you! :) xx

    Yasmina | The July Journal

  11. These are such fab tips Soph - I've been wanting to visit for ages and your photos definitely bumped it further up my list! x
    Sophie Cliff

  12. So jealous of this trip, but you already knew that! I still say Santorini was made for you two ;) Looking for new hotels is a really good idea, definitely gonna try that one in future. :P
    lily kate x

  13. So many beautiful photos! Handy little guide, and I'm glad there's options so its not too expensive!


  14. I was talking the other day about how I'd love to go to Santorini, and your photos prove how beautiful it is! This was so helpful, especially where abouts on the island to stay 💞

    Claudia /