One of the most common misapprehensions is that we need to be wealthy to travel the world and explore new countries. Most of us have been coerced into thinking that traveling is the amount of money we own or can afford to spend during our trips. If you consider traveling as a big price tag and nothing more, we are here to dispel this myth and help you travel on a budget. Firstly, let's break down traveling into three cost categories: flights, accommodation, and food.
First things first, you need to understand where to travel as your destination matters a lot when you are short of cash. If you are on a budget, target only cheap destinations. There are too many resources to explore different destinations and compare prices, such as Skyscanner, Kayak, Google Flights, etc.
Handy Advice: Always make sure to clear your browser cookies and use an incognito window while searching for flights as websites track if you have looked at the prices before and bump up the prices.
Off-peak Season Travel
Traveling off-seasons also may save you a lot of money when there is the least amount of tourists. Travel costs on holidays like New Year or Christmas can be by far cheaper compared to the rest of the year. Get your flight booking at least a week in advance and travel with carry-on luggage to avoid extra fees for checked baggage.
Get the Most out of Travel Rewards Programs
One of the best ways to save on traveling is by using your credit card instead of paying real money. Every single time you use your credit card, you could collect points of miles towards your next trip. Basically, you can use the collected miles for free plane tickets and free stays in hotels.
Airplane Travel May Be Costly
Another way to save money while traveling, especially when you are not in a hurry, is to avoid flying. Getting tickets for buses or trains may dramatically lower the cost of your trip.
Staying in a small, locally-owned hotel may be more acceptable than renting a house on Airbnb. Also, always make sure to find hotels with breakfast included as it's a free meal that may cut your food costs.
For budget accommodation, it's ideal to stay in hostels. They are crazy cheap, and one of the best parts of staying in hostels is that they have a full kitchen. So if you want to save money on going out to eat, you can shop in some local food markets and cook on your own.
Use Your Network
Also, when it comes to accommodation, think about your social network. If you have a long-lost cousin somewhere in Europe, it's time to send a message and let him know about your visit. Sometimes these conversations can lead to a free place to stay or at least you would know a local which gives you more in-depth travel experience.
Food: Get into the Local Zone
The next logical travel expense is food. Avoid eating in tourist traps as much as possible. Usually, the places where there are many tourists are the restaurants that can serve poor quality food and charge three times as much for it. Try to eat where locals eat as you may find high-quality food for a good price.
More Tips for a Budget Tourist
Another thing that has got extremely popular over the past few years is working while traveling. Too many companies hire enthusiastic people to travel to different destinations to capture their experiences and promote them online. However, if you don't have a career based on social media, you can still earn money while traveling, such as teaching English online or working in the IT industry.
If your biggest dream in this life is to travel the world, maybe spending money on not travel-related things is what you need to avoid. Spending your money on experiences rather than possessions is what may inspire you to explore the world.