While many seem to recognize in their heads that travel is absolutely rewarding, many let their fear of its costs deter them from setting off. Unless you’re going for a lavish vacation looking to be spoiled, we don’t think it has to be expensive. Here are some suggestions that can help you start off on the right track to plan and budget better – 24 ultimate frugal travel tips you should know!
Things to keep in mind before you embark on your travel:
1. First of all, don’t confine your mentality with any presuppositions of what travel ‘should’ be like. ‘Travels’ can unfold in different ways per individual, as there are different kinds of travellers.
2. Spend your initial easing-into-travel period getting to know your own style of travel. Do you fancy indulging in cultural issues? Do you prefer to be physically active on a daily basis? Are you a daring soul constantly seeking new adventures to challenge yourself?
3. Mulling over questions of lifestyle will ultimately, help you make yourself at home wherever and whenever. Since everyone commands and deserves a different set of conditions, rituals or environment, the key is to know yourself inside and out – if you think you aren’t ready yet, traveling will get you there eventually.
4. Speaking of lifestyle, it is essential that you change to suitably to accommodate your travels. To begin with, set aside a sum of money – whether big or small, every month from your earnings for traveling. This will help you in the long run.
5. Cut down on the unnecessary expenses that are eating away your income. The best way to figure out this is to track your spendings, especially that you spend on social life, eating outside or shopping.
6. In regards to safety – be adventurous and daring, while bearing in mind to rather ‘be safe than sorry’ and with precautionary measures to follow up with accordingly. Be on your guard, but don’t miss out on genuine interactions with various people and cultures, for which you’ll need to open up your mind.
7. Backpacking is one of the many ways of traveling you can choose. If it fascinates or works out for you, these tips for novices may be of help.
8. You might have a bucket list of places that you dream to go, but some of them could be well, only a dream, because of being too far or highly expensive. That shouldn’t dishearten you. Start by picking up the inexpensive places on your list, and aim to tick off your list as years progress.
9. Which brings us to the next point – don’t get stressed out by the exotic travel pics that you see online, even posted by your friends or loved ones. Travel because you love to, and travel because you enjoy it. Remember, it is a not competition of who visits the most number of countries or the most lovely destination – Travel is not a race, and online or offline validation shouldn’t be your end goal of traveling. Travel to enjoy!
10. Experience is the best teacher. So shrug off the initial fears of unknown or venturing into a new place. It might be difficult at first, but with trips, you’ll start feeling more comfortable and at ease.
Tips for planning your travel:
So once you have incorporated these little things to prep yourself for travel, you’ll reach a stage where you are ready to fly. We hear your jitters and the excitement, so without much ado, here are some travel tips to plan your travel better.
11. Having a flexible schedule really helps you pick out the cheapest deals available and save on flights and accommodation.
12. Coming to booking flights and hotels, try to use incognito browsers that don’t track browsing history. This prevents websites you visit from storing cookies on your computer. Cookies are small files stored on a user’s computer and store information specific to your usage of that particular website – meaning that every time you search for flight tickets, hotels, rental cars and etc., the websites recognize you as a repetitive visitor and may show higher prices or create false urgency for you to book fast. An incognito browser does not store cookies and hence, you see normal prices even after repetitive visits.
13. Use any of these aggregator websites to compare prices (whether for hotels, flights or whatnot): adioso, Skyscanner, Kayak , Google Flights for the best airfares, and HotelsCombined for booking hotels after scanning all-inclusive price offerings all in one spot. Hopper is also a convenient app for both keeping watch and booking on-the-spot via mobile. They let you see the best prices not only for your dates but also for dates before and after your trip to suggest days for the best deals.
14. Don’t limit yourself to the idea of flying to a set destination. You can look for any city offering the cheapest fare, then move on from there. At the same time, compare the prices of direct flights with the non-direct ones. You might have to do a bit of moving around, but if it really saves you some good amount of money, why not try it?
15. Do the free walking tours. Most places have organizations that offer guides or tour services, which can act as a good starting point to know the place. The payment is usually collected voluntarily.
16. Work exchange: Exchange your skills and work for accommodation and/or food. Strike up a deal that enables you to stay at somebody’s place while assisting with their chores. You can look at places such as WorldPackers, WorkAway, Wwoof, HelpX to find volunteer opportunities and choose one that suits you.
17. Try being a digital nomad: If you use technology to make a living and your work gives you the flexibility to be location-agnostic, pack your bags to travel and work wherever you want. The plethora of communication options – WhatsApp, Skype, a multitude of chat tools, the emergence of productivity tools like Slack or Workplace by Facebook, and online cloud storage solutions enable you to coordinate easily with clients/customers/teams from anywhere. You might just need to calculate those time zones!
18. Cook your own food wherever possible. If you are staying in hostels, most of them have a kitchen area where you are allowed to cook. Practice this wherever you go because whether we know it or not, a good chunk of money goes on food. If cooking is not possible, at least find cheap eateries.
19. Live like a local. Go and explore places where locals go to eat and get drunk. Most touristy places in any city are expensive and not worth the quality they provide. Do some research or ask the locals to hit up the so-called more authentic spots. You will spend less and have more fun, especially with all the interactions you’ll most likely strike up with locals.
20. Speaking of living like a local, make use of technology to help you do exactly that. For example, our mobile app Talk Travel is all about finding answers to your travel queries while on the road from local experts across the world. If you need help while planning, leveraging apps like this will save you from the hassle of the time and effort. Download Talk Travel app for Android or Ios mobiles now.
21. Make the best of local freebies. For instance, most museums and monuments in Europe have free entry for students and for EU citizens below 26 years of age. Think about how much money can be saved from that, an average museum entry ticket costing around 10€. Similarly, Paris offers free entry to most museums and monuments on the first Sunday of every month. Obviously, this leads to greater crowds and long queues, but you can always check out places and shortlist the ones that you really want to visit later on.
22. Carpool or hitchhike. Most places have carpooling options, where you travel with other people and share the expenses. This is likely to end up being cheaper than flight/train/bus fares (which price-surge at times). Carpooling options such as BlaBlaCar can really help lower local travel costs within a country. Or hitchhike – though completely free, sufficient research is a must-do before getting into a stranger’s vehicle.
23. Earn miles on your flight/hotel bookings, wherever you make reservations. Use them judiciously and a decent portion of your travel can get subsidized
24. If possible, travel in groups – expenses get divided and you benefit from group deals if available.
Here’s an additional set of frugal travel tips s to set you on the money-saving track.
Traveling on your own, regardless of age and gender, is always nerve-wracking at first. Whether you find yourself adjusting to or newly implementing these ideas to your preferred style of living abroad, these tips will spur you onto a smooth start. That being said, daring to start is half the game so now that you’ve set your mind to it – all you need to do is keep the momentum going!