Djibouti is not so expensive
Djibouti Travel Blog› entry 2 of 2 › view all entries
December 11th, 2009 – by: txaggie
Over the past couple of years I have traveled to a couple of places around the USA, Europe, and Africa. Unlike many of my countrymen I do not mind the local Motel 6, or La Quinta (since my dog goes with me). When I travel with US government workers it is always amazing to me how spoiled people can be, throwing their nose up at anything less than a Marriott; another story.
I prefer local establishments with a clean bed, because I am looking for a place to sleep not watch TV or go swimming. When I eat it is at places where the tourist do not go.
In Djibouti I was forced to live off base (Camp Lemonier) because lack of facilities also called Container Living Units (CLU). These CLUs are metal transport boxes with the ambiance of a prison cell. The place I got to live is a 1500 sq ft apartment, with kitchen, living room, and 2 baths, built in a middle eastern architecture style within walking distance of the French market. A man delivers french bread every morning and evening for .15 cents a loaf.....yes let me repeat, that is fresh baked FRENCH BREAD for .1 5 C E N T S per loaf delivered. Wow, doesn't that sound expensive? I will go broke at those prices. A walk to the French market and you will find a vegetable stand, where yes the prices are a little higher than at the French market or those you find in the old town market.
Restaurants/cafes are fairly inexpensive as well. Unless you want something that is similar to the US or Europe. But I have to inform you, you are NOT in the US or Europe so stop trying to compare. A good Djiboutian cafe/restaurant will run you around $15 for meal and drinks. For those of you who are 'scared' of the potential for germs go to a street vendor, watch how they cook your food and get a great HUGE sandwich for $2.00. The Camp Lemonier crowd may think they are safe by eating at DFAC (dining facility), and I would have to categorically say you should rethink that.
The price of the all expense paid Villa is $750/month, which includes security (not really needed), electric, water, maid, etc.
As far as being dirty, yes the city in general is a mess. Downtown is old and needing modernization. The main streets are pretty much cleaned up, while the ethnic neighborhoods are a mess. I do not think a real traveler is looking for Salzburg when coming to a African country.
Yes, it is true, there are 3 price levels in Djibouti: 1-American, 2-French, 3-Djibouti prices going from highest to lowest. As an American I have found that there is a way to get around this issue by not doing what you guys do or go where you guys go:-)
Join TravBuddy to leave comments, meet new friends and share travel tips!