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My partner and I have purchased cheap return tickets flying in and out of Buenos Aires, Argentina 6 months apart.

We are planning on travelling south from Colombia to Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia, Chile and then fly out from BA.

What is the "best" way to get from Buenos Aires to Bogota to start our trip southwards? Flights are currently $850 AUD (about $700 USD) each direct, which is very expensive. Cost is not the only consideration, as long as we can gather some great experiences on the way - but we are travelling for 12 months in total, so the flights are a huge hit on the budget.

We are considering that we can fly from Rio (Brazil) to Manaus for $140 AUD (about $100 USD) each, so it may be worth going via Iguazu Falls and Brazil, then going overland to Bogota. The problem is that I'm Australian, so the Brazilian visa fee is about $200 AUD (my partner is Kiwi, so doesn't need a visa).

We are in no great hurry, we can take about 2 weeks.

The one other option we are considering is buying a car and driving it. I believe it's impossible to buy a car in Argentina and travel across borders, but it may be possible to purchase in Paraguay and travel up that way to Colombia.

Would love to hear some suggestions, especially from people who have travelled from BA to Bogota. I know there's no perfect answer, but we are just trying to weigh up the best option for us.

Thanks!

closed as off-topic by Giorgio, motoDrizzt, user 56513, Ali Awan, JonathanReez Jun 21 '17 at 0:02

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "Questions covering tasks normally performed by travel agents such as constructing travel and tour itineraries (including scheduling and budgeting) are off-topic. They are generally too specific to your personal preference, with many variables and possibilities, and are probably not helpful to others. See also The WANTA debate." – Giorgio, motoDrizzt, user 56513, Ali Awan, JonathanReez
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • Unfortunately Travel Stack Exchange is not for asking to have your travel itinerary constructed, including flight scheduling, budgeting and finding accommodation. Such questions cannot be answered as there are too many variables and personal preferences to account for, and are unlikely to be of use to others. An actual travel agent may be of assistance. For more info, read here – Jacob Horbulyk Jun 20 '17 at 3:19
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    Sorry, I'm having trouble with the 6 months apart and 12 months in total, how does that add up? I don't know about entering Colombia through the east but the border south with Ecuador is extremely dangerous. I live in Ecuador and I know some people who did it and they did make it back alive but more than half got assaulted and robbed and they can blend in better from people from elsewhere. – Itai Jun 20 '17 at 3:32
  • Rhys, as other said Travel.SE is not (well, it shouldn't, at least) about suggestion, opinions, and even more constructing itineraries is explicitly a big "no no" in the faq of the site. Expect this question to be closed in a breeze, but don't worry: as always, for this kind of questions I suggest you to head to the Thorn Tree Forum at Lonely Planet website – motoDrizzt Jun 20 '17 at 13:32
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While you get a more concrete answer, here is some info.

Rio is out of the way (its farther from Bogotá than BA is), unless you explicitly want to visit; it's a 3-hour flight (or 48-hour bus) from BA and it will not be particularly cheap. And then its not like Manaos is close to Bogotá...

You could fly to Bolivia or Perú and then try to get to Bogotá by land; but be warned that transportation in Bolivia is an adventure in itself. You could also consider a bus or flight from Buenos Aires to Santiago and then make your way up.

All said, I don't think you can make that trip a lot cheaper. Bogotá is 7000km away from Buenos Aires (for comparison, Perth is 4000km away from Sydney).

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Flights within South America are notoriously expensive. Occasionally, you might be able to get a deal, but you'd have to keep monitoring ticket prices. While one-way tickets seldom can be had on the cheap.

There is no easy overland route from Argentina to Colombia, but it's certainly doable, and you're doing it yourself in reverse already. The typical route between the two is Colombia to Ecuador to Peru, then to Argentina via either Bolivia and Brazil or Chile. But, this is the journey you're already taking.

If you want to avoid this itinerary going from BA to Colombia, some options are:

  • Flying to Panama, which tends to be more affordable than other nearby destinations, then crossing the Darien Gap to Colombia. This is very doable.
  • Getting yourself to Manaus and crossing into Colombia. Either directly, or via Venezuela. This requires time and won't be too cheap.
  • Getting yourself to Belem and making a bunch of hops, via the Guyanas, to Colombia. This also takes time and won't be cheap.
  • Taking the longest bus ride in the world from Rio (or Sao Paulo) to Lima and then making your way up, for example with one other bus straight to Colombia. It's not likely this will be cheaper than flying.

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