Many of us, at some point in our lives, have to travel on a tight budget. Whether taking a gap year, traveling with family, or taking a break from your busy life, you might be looking for ways to save money while still seeing more of the world.
Here are some of the things that you should know when it comes to low-budget travel.
Shopping Around is Crucial
You should never book the first thing you see when you are on a budget. Look at package holidays, but also booking flights and accommodation separately. Look at hotels, but also consider caravans, hostels, and other options.
Use a flight checker to find the cheapest flights currently offered and get into the habit of looking for deals and offers before you book. Taking your time to look around can save you a fortune.
Good Timing Makes a Difference
When you go on vacation, and even the time of day that you travel can make a massive difference to the total cost. Traveling in high summer or during school breaks is much more expensive than traveling at other times of the year. Flights and accommodation can double in price; even tickets to attractions, while you are away, could be more expensive. Avoid these dates if you can.
Then, when looking at flights, look at the difference in price if you fly on different days or at different times. Midweek and late-night flights are often cheaper because they aren’t as popular.
You’ll Need to be Strict with Yourself
One of the best tips for traveling on a budget is to make a budget and stick to it. Sometimes, this means you have to give something up or opt for a cheaper version. It might mean that you can’t drink as much as you’d like or that you can’t stay in the best hotel. To successfully travel on a low budget, you’ll need to be strict and manage your money effectively. This can mean checking in with your finances every day.
Learn to Prioritize
A low budget typically means that even with savings, you can’t have everything or do everything on your wish list. Before you go, make sure you know what your priorities are. Would you rather travel as cheaply as possible to stay in a nicer hotel? Would you give up some things so that you can visit one particular place? Research your destination and write a list of your priorities for the trip.
Learn to Pack Light
You can often save money by traveling with just a cabin bag instead of hand luggage. But this is a skill in itself. Learning to pack only essentials and how to get as much into your small bag as possible is worthwhile.
Prepare for a More Rustic Experience
Chances are, if you are traveling on a budget, you aren’t going to be flying first class, staying in all-inclusive luxury hotels, or heading out to the biggest tourist hotspots and attractions. You could be upset about all those things you’ll miss, or you could embrace it, seeing it as an opportunity to enjoy a more authentic experience.
Eating in local restaurants, shopping at markets, learning to cook local delicacies for yourself, and spending time at free or low-cost, local attractions instead of traveling to the big water parks means you’ll spend more time meeting local people and learning more about the culture. This can be a much better way to travel and a money-saving one.
Traveling on a budget might seem more difficult, but it can actually be an excellent way to see the world while boosting your money management and organization skills.