We all love to travel but we often find ourselves wondering if we can afford the next vacation. There are so many things we love to spend on we want a luxurious stay, cool shopping, food at different restaurants, but all that requires money and in order to complete that we exceed our travel budget. Travel need not to be expensive. Here are six ways to maximize your travel funds.
Save On Flights
If you plan your trips ahead, at least 6 months or even a year in advance you’ll be able to take advantage of promo fares. Sign up for airline newsletters; get updates on deals via Facebook and Twitter. It’s usually cheaper to travel midweek. Travel deals are entirely based on availability and since most people travel over the weekend, you will find the cheapest airfare deals if you travel on a weekday. If you find a nonstop flight too expensive, try adding a stopover and check if it costs less. Direct flights are also cheaper than nonstop flights, particularly if you are flying long haul.
Imagine getting on a motorbike and going through breathtaking landscapes. Or biking around the majestic temples and historical sites. How about taking train, trying delicacies and talking to locals and fellow travelers? Sure, it may not always be the most comfortable option, but traveling slowly by taking overland transportation is one of the cheapest ways to experience a country.
Travel At Night
This can save you money in two ways, firsts it’s the unpopular option so it’s usually cheaper, second you save money on accommodations. Most night trains and red-eye flights are the cheapest options to get from one place to another. Trying to get some shut eye on a sleeper trains isn’t so bad either.
Instead of always staying at expensive hotels try alternatives like hostels and family run home-stays. Not only are you helping support the local economy you also won’t have to overspend, especially if you’re only staying a few rights. You’ll spend most of your time outdoors anyway. Another affordable and more convenient option is to rent apartments or condo units if you’re traveling with a group. You can choose a place with a kitchen so you don’t have to eat out all the time.
Keep Track Of Spending
Bring a small notebook and list down your daily expenses. Write down everything you spend on like transportation costs, accommodations, food and even small things like drinks or laundry expenses. It helps to know where your money goes so you know what to cut down on. Beware of budget stealers likes unnecessary shopping and excessive partying.
A major part of your travel fund will go to food. So how can you eat well without going broke? Ask the locals for their cheap, authentic recommendations. Usually, if a place is packed, the food is good and inexpensive. Be open to trying local delicacies not just because it’s your cheapest option, it’s also a major part of the travel experience.
Any plans of taking a break after a few months of stressful work? Then, travelling out of town might be a good idea. To ensure that the hard-earned money will go far, here are some of the budget travel tips to keep in mind:
• Call the hotel first before booking it through the Internet. Though it’s convenient to make travel arrangements online, it doesn’t guarantee to give travellers the best possible deals. It’s recommended to call the hotel depending on the expected time of arrival and speak with a supervisor or manager on duty.
Ask if they can offer an affordable package during the stay. Normally, some hotels would give discounts to travellers who prefer rooms that aren’t as coveted as the others. And for those who are celebrating their birthdays or anniversaries, some hotels offer complimentary upgrades for a night.
• Compare prices of airline tickets. People will prefer to purchase tickets online than over the phone because it’s more convenient. However, it’s essential to make a comparison first by calling the airline and check if the ticket price is similar to what is displayed on the Internet. When purchasing tickets, it’s also recommended to consider the extra fees. Once all of this has been made, go for the one that offers a lower rate.
• Book everything alone. Third parties such as travel agents and booking websites offering services to arrange everything seldom work for free. Normally, there’s an equivalent fee that will go to them. Travellers will save more money by booking each and every element separately through contacting their preferred hotel and airline. By doing so, they will also have the option to contact other choices for price comparison.
• Ask for repositioning cruises or flights. Airlines and cruise lines usually reposition their trips from time to time. it’s cheaper than the traditional trips but also offers similar services to customers. One thing to note though, travel time for repositioned trips may take longer than the usual.
• Avoid travelling during peak seasons. As the number of tourists goes up, the travel cost also does. Though visiting a certain country during Christmas time is a perfect idea, travellers can save hundreds of dollars on flights and hotel accommodations if they can wait to visit once the season is over.
• Share a room with a friend. Stay at the hotel is another essential thing to consider on budget when travelling. There are hotels where room rates for a single person is also the same as the cost of rooms for two persons. Instead taking separate rooms for this situation, why not get a room for two? Aside from the saved money, this will also be a good time to spend bonding moments with a friend while on vacation. Forget about the loud snoring during bedtime though.
• Travel like the locals. As tourists, riding glitzy air-conditioned buses with movies on-board is a convenient option but often comes with a hefty price. Doing this might take away the money that should be spent on exploring other places around the area.
Travelling should not be expensive. All it takes is just the right preparation, timing and budgeting. By keeping all these budget travel tips in mind, everyone can have a wonderful vacation without shedding out too much money from their pockets.