To be able to travel as much as possible, I’m willing to follow some rules to get most travel value as possible out of my money. Here are 25 of my best tips to help you travel the world on a budget.
#Tip 1: Book using an Incognito Mode in your browser
#Tip 2: Book as early as possible
So if you’re flexible with where you wanna go, this is perfect, the world is your oyster, get on it. I book far in advance if the destination is really popular, such as Italy or Iceland, you need to get in early because everything is so expensive leading up because it is a very popular destination.
#Tip 3: Unknown destinations may have good last-minute offers
If a destination is relatively unknown, you can book closer to the date because sometimes accommodation in AirBnB, for example, is slashed so dramatically closer to the date, but there is a risk involved. This could turn out to be a disaster and work against you and everything is actually more expensive, so use this tip with caution.
#Tip 4: Pick the cheapest days to fly
Many airlines have a low-fare calendar which makes it easiest to find the cheapest flights available. Fly on a Tuesday or Wednesday, usually it’s a lot cheaper flying on these dates, but this is not always accurate so check Momondo, Skyscanner, and so forth. Sometimes even going day-by-day to try to identify where the cheapest flight dates are. Go save the lives of people, go get it! If you don’t have a flexible schedule, it’s still wise to look up the cheapest days to fly, then ask for time off, and then book those flights, instead of the other way around.
#Tip 5: Find affordable accommodations
Stay in hostels. Dorm rooms are fine, mixed dorm rooms are fine. The large dorm rooms are fine. I’ve only had a handful of bad experiences in the dorm rooms, when it’s too loud, too many people walking in and out, doors slamming. If you’re a female and a bit nervous, stay in an all-female dorm. I will point out that the only time I ever had anything stolen from me was in an all-female dorm. In all my 12 years of travel this is the only bad thing that’s ever happened to me, though, so it was just a one-off experience.
Just book whatever you’re comfortable with. But basically, just don’t shy away from hostels ’cause they’re awesome, you meet people so easy. Another option, AirBnB is awesome, can stay in your own room, you can have the entire apartment to yourself.
#Tip 6: Get discounts if you book long-term stays
Do you consider to stay longer at the destination you visit? Sometimes there are just unreal deals, especially if you book for about a month at a time, you get discounts of 35-50% off. So, when looking for accommodation make sure you check hostels and AirBnB because you could be surprised.
#Tip 7: Valuable breakfast deals
If you’re staying in a hostel quite often, they have breakfast included, stock up for the day. An egg in one pocket, and apple in the other, sandwich in your backpack, goes a long way. Save your stuff by not getting it stolen, referring to the tip above.
#Tip 8: Make sure your stuff is secured
It doesn’t happen very often, but please, for the love of God, lock up all your stuff when you are leaving the hostel to go explore. Put it in a locker, everything, no matter how nice your roommates might seem, it could happen, so I am always cautious and I just pack everything away.
I look like a bit of a psycho when I do so because everyone else is sprawled all over the place, but I would rather have my stuff.
#Tip9: Everyone needs a travel insurance
Make sure you also have a travel insurance. In many cases, you can get free travel insurance from your credit card company, as long as you have paid your trips with them. Read the conditions, and make sure that the insurance covers lost items on the go. Pickpockets have stolen my mobile phone several time, but thanks, god, my travel insurance covered everything!
#Tip 10: Cheap transportation is easy!
For transport, just find the cheapest way to get from AB– Just find the cheapest way to get from A to B. I like to use the website rometorio.com. In some countries, Uber is a good option to public transportation.
#Tip 11: Find flight bargains from more unknown airports
So if you’re in Europe, it’s very easy catching buses. If you’re flying long distance, maybe it’s easier to fly to a big airport in a nearby area and then catching a bus, or a local plane, or a train from that destination.
Flying to certain airports is always gonna be generally more expensive, so just try to find what is the closest. Check out the airport alternatives. Often you can find 2 or 3 airports located only some few hours driving distance from each other.
#Tip 12: Pack smart, don’t bring more than your essentials!
Fly with cabin baggage only. In Europe it used to be free, but now most of the airlines even charge for the hand luggage. So these days, it’s unreal because lots, almost all, airline carriers charge you for every piece of luggage on the actual plane, so for example, I carry this backpack and my other backpack with my camera with me when I’m flying, and that’s enough for my entire trip, for months at a time.
There’s no reason why I would need anything more than that. So, a carry-on suitcase and a backpack, you’re good to go. This is the rule that I always go for, and I still have way too much stuff when I’m traveling, that I hardly use any of the stuff. And I carry expensive, massive, heavy photography equipment with me. If you are a notorious over-packer, halve whatever you think you wanna bring and then halve it again.
#Tip 13: Read the conditions for your ticket and what luggage that is not included
Always make sure you have read the airlines rules regarding luggage in advance. Many low-cost airlines may charge a lot if you do any mistakes and have to pay extra for luggage at the airport. Once I flied with Ryanair, I had to pay £50 extra because my handluggage was 1 inch too thick… It’s annoying, and it was my fault! I should have brought the other bag instead.
#Tip 14: Save money on gyms
If you’re not in a professional athlete, you don’t have a problem not going to a normal gym. Staying healthy on the road is very important, so if you wanna work out and save some cash, you can do so at a local outdoor gym, which is free.
Or apps such as TrainAway will give you fluh-bluh-bluh– will give you really great deals on local gyms. Or volunteer. Check out Workaway or similar pages on places you can stay for free, eat for free, and you just do a little bit of work in return.
#Tip 15: Skip gym
Another and even better option may be to skip gym completely. You’re on holiday for gods sake. You should relax, and just do lazy stuff. It’s never wrong to have some relaxing days. I think too many people are too strict with themselves. It’s okay to just have a walk sometimes. Gaining weight? Well, that can always be changed later, don’t worry!
#Tip 16: Prepare your own dinner
Cooking is always wise when you’re on the road because it is the cheapest. Just ask your AirBnB host or the hostel staff where their cheapest supermarket is, and if possible, shop at the local markets, it’s cheaper, healthier, fresher, plastic-free, delicious. There are also many shops that have an own corner with discounted products that expire on date. These items may be sold for half price or even less! Just make sure to eat this food as soon as possible, while they are still okay.
#Tip 17: Look for affordable lunch deals
If you are eating out, try to do so at lunch because the deals at lunchtime are much better than dinner deals. And also, ask the locals where the cheapest places are to eat out, and the good ones, because there are so many tourist traps for restaurants. Avoid those, as much as you can, and follow the locals’ advice.
You may actually find affordable buffet places where you can eat as much as you want. If you want to maximize the value, you show up when the buffet is opening, and sit there for several hours. I’m sure you will get full and eat a lot there! Maybe you don’t need to eat more than just that one meal for the entire day!
#Tip 18: Avoid expensive guided excursions
When it comes to excursions, I don’t often participate because I just don’t like tours, but I just don’t like massive group tours, not knowing who my tour guide is, going to the boring same-old tourist destinations.
It’s just, I just don’t like tours. Unless it’s my tour, of course, which is super fun. So oftentimes, I’ll just hire a car and I’ll do the tour outline by myself or with friends. I have my own pace, I can stop whenever, take my own photos. I have taken the red tourist buses in several cities, just because I had limited time to discover the city on my own, but I realize it is an expensive way to travel and way more boring than trying out the city’s local public transport. I want to feel how it is to live in the city, not just stay… It should be fun! Make it fun for yourself!
Or if you’re looking to do a boat tour, for example, you clearly can’t do that by yourself, speak to the locals. Stalk people on Instagram that live there and ask them questions about if they know the best places to do a boat tour, or if you’re in Asia, speak to the local fisherman, maybe they can take you on their boat.
#Tip 19: Find free alternative excursions
Basically, just ask the locals. Questions get you very far if you just are willing to ask. Maybe you get some new friends that can show you around the city! Take free classes or walking tours. There are a lot of free classes out there and walking tours are almost in every single city. Even some free food preparation courses around!
Usually it’s for a tip, but that’s still way cheaper than having to go on a big tour and paying way too much.
#Tip 20: Avoid the commercial tourist shops
Don’t buy souvenirs, they just clog up your space and they probably break in your backpack.
Stick to taking photos and creating memories, it’s gonna be way more valuable.
#Tip 21: Don’t travel in the peak tourist season
Plan to travel during off-peak periods. Iceland, for example, is significantly more expensive in summer. Costa Rica has this beautiful rainy season that most people stay away from because they just hear rainy season and they just think it’s constantly raining, but actually, it’s beautiful throughout the day and in the evening starts raining like crazy.
But I love it, it’s luscious, it green, and there’s not many people. Some islands in Croatia have a three-month travel period because it’s the school holidays and after that, almost day-to-day it’s black and white, it becomes empty, and that’s a great time to travel. The locals seem to treat me nicer when I’m the only tourist there!
Even though a lot of things are closed at the time, there are still a few very nice restaurants open and it’s a lot quieter and cheaper.
#Tip 22: Search from a different country with a VPN to find the best deals available
Use a VPN to find the cheapest deals. Sometimes when you’re searching from a location, it ups the price because it’s a rich country you might be searching from.
Sometimes, playing around with your VPN and pretending like you’re searching from a different country allows you to get cheaper deals and this can save you a ton of money.
#Tip 23: Collect cash points and miles
Save up frequent flyer miles. Sign up to any membership clubs the airlines and hotels may have. Get a credit card that gives you cash point for everything you buy with it! It may seem like small money, but when you gather everything in a one-year or longer time perspective, it is actually a lot of savings!
#Tip 24: Check all the travel costs before you book the flights
Do your research. Some places have incredibly cheap flights, and then you get there, and you have a massive shock because prices are expensive.
Iceland falls into that category. A very quick search of accommodation prices is gonna help you determine if you are able to travel to that place. So first, search for accommodation, then flights, then see of you can actually travel there.
#Tip 25: Local sim cards are much cheaper
Buy a SIM card in the local country because it’s a lot cheaper than paying for your massive fees from your phone. The data plans are way cheaper than what your mobile operator in your home country normally offers. You may often get free domestic calls and messages as well.
- #Tip 1: Book using an Incognito Mode in your browser
- #Tip 2: Book as early as possible
- #Tip 3: Unknown destinations may have good last-minute offers
- #Tip 4: Pick the cheapest days to fly
- #Tip 5: Find affordable accommodations
- #Tip 6: Get discounts if you book long-term stays
- #Tip 7: Valuable breakfast deals
- #Tip 8: Make sure your stuff is secured
- #Tip9: Everyone needs a travel insurance
- #Tip 10: Cheap transportation is easy!
- #Tip 11: Find flight bargains from more unknown airports
- #Tip 12: Pack smart, don’t bring more than your essentials!
- #Tip 13: Read the conditions for your ticket and what luggage that is not included
- #Tip 14: Save money on gyms
- #Tip 15: Skip gym
- #Tip 16: Prepare your own dinner
- #Tip 17: Look for affordable lunch deals
- #Tip 18: Avoid expensive guided excursions
- #Tip 19: Find free alternative excursions
- #Tip 20: Avoid the commercial tourist shops
- #Tip 21: Don’t travel in the peak tourist season
- #Tip 22: Search from a different country with a VPN to find the best deals available
- #Tip 23: Collect cash points and miles
- #Tip 24: Check all the travel costs before you book the flights
- #Tip 25: Local sim cards are much cheaper
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I hope you got some good insights into how to travel on a budget. Maybe you will even save some money on your next holiday?
Traveling is a lot cheaper these days than you can ever imagine, all you have to do is look, research, get started, you’re gonna find some great deals along the way.
Don’t be shy, just get out there, hit the road, and while you’re at it, hit the like button, subscribe, hit that bell and I look forward to seeing you guys again soon. Thank you so much for reading.