As a regular traveler, there’s one thing I hear over and over again – I don’t have enough money to travel.
Now, as any good nomad knows, traveling is never something that’s restricted by money. No matter how much or how little you have to spend, there’s always a way to hit the road and experience a new culture.
What most mean when they say they ‘wish they had the money to travel,’ is that they wish they were able to travel smarter. Here’s a quick guide to teach you how to make those necessary savings in order to ensure the trip of a lifetime.
Establish Your Budget
Before you start planning, investigating destinations and attempting to book flights and accommodation, it’s essential to have a clear estimate of your budget. One of the biggest pitfalls holidaymakers face is misjudging their finances and ending up out of pocket. Even if you have nothing to your name other than a passport, making sure you have an in-depth understanding of your monetary situation is the first step to any successful trip.
Once you have a clear idea of how much expendable income you have, the next is to establish your priorities:
Do you have to have luxurious accommodation or can you opt for a cheaper hostel?
Are first-class flights essential or can you handle the trip in coach?
Asking yourself these questions give you a clear base from which you can then search for the appropriate savings, in order to perfectly customize your trip to your own requirements
Avoid The Tourist Traps
Let’s face it: the most famous attractions come with the heftiest price tags. This is often where most make the mistake of parting with large sums of cash because there seemingly isn’t to be an alternative. However, to the experienced eye, it soon becomes clear that most of these admission fees are truly scandalous when compared to the actual experience.
For example: The Sagrada Familia in Barcelona is one of the world’s most well-known landmarks. Famed for it’s extravagant design, which remains unfinished to this day, it will set you back a whopping €29 to visit the significantly less impressive interior. However, you can experience the monument in all its glory -and take the essential selfie – for absolutely no charge, by simply wandering around the outside walls.
This situation is also often the case for tours and excursions. There are many trips available that offer customers transport to top attractions. However, regularly it’s significantly cheaper to make your own way there. Keeping an eye out for these kinds of tourist traps is one of the easiest ways to make your money go further.
Hit Up The Sales
The travel industry is awash with businesses attempting to attract more guests to their establishments. As a thrifty traveler, you can make incredible savings by keeping up with the top names in travel and capitalizing on their sales. This way, you can cut the costs without having to sacrifice quality and luxury.
For those looking to book now, one of the best current offers available is the annual sale by the Corinthia Hotels. If you head across to their website from the 11th January to the 28th of February 2017, you can receive an incredible 50% off on their top locations. This includes five* hotels in Lisbon, Prague, St. Petersburg, Budapest and Malta. They also are doing a bonus offer of 30% off their exclusive London flagship venue, for those looking for the very best!
Live Like The Locals
Once you’ve found great savings on your accommodation and itinerary, the only thing left is to slash all those miscellaneous costs that unavoidably come with travel. By far the best tactic here is to learn to live like the locals! These people have been searching for the best ways to cut costs in their native country for their whole lives – so who better to take a few tips from.
Here are a few ideas for elements of your trip that could benefit from local advice.
- Places to eat. As well as being able to recommend good value restaurants, locals also have the best insights into the shops and markets that offer deals on food for even more savings. You can even try your hand a cooking a local recipe!
- Getting around. Every city has its unique public transport system. Knowing whether it’s cheaper to take the bus, train, tram, taxi or even underground is knowledge that all city dwellers gain at a young age. Ask around to find the best option for you!
- I’ve already briefly covered tourist traps; this falls into the same category. Instead of heading straight for them, investigate what local’s do for fun in the city. Not only will you save money, you’ll enjoy a much more authentic experience.
- Local Rates. It’s a poorly kept secret that many country’s charge different prices for foreigners and natives. While there’s not foolproof way around this, if you manage to befriend some locals you may find yourself eligible to the discounts they enjoy!
It cannot be said enough times: money should never dictate your ability to travel. These tips are only a few of the infinite ways to side step your financial restrictions and enjoy the adventure of a lifetime. If you have any more handy hints for fellow travelers, be sure to leave a comment below with your ideas!