So you want to travel but think you can’t afford it? Think again! These 5 tips will have you globetrotting in no time.
1. Be flexible.
Unless you have to travel on exact dates for a specific event, be flexible about when you can go. Even moving a flight by a day or two can save you hundreds of dollars. Flights with a short (or long!) layover can also save you money over direct flights if you have a few hours to spare. Some airlines even offer free hotels on the layovers with a hotel included if you take a long layover in their hub city (but be careful – there can be terms around this option, so read before you book!). Traveling on shoulder seasons instead of peak seasons can also help to cut costs.
2. Airline aggregator search sites are your friend.
My personal favorite is Skyscanner. Know you want to go a certain country or city but don’t know when? Simply search using your departure airport and choose the country or city for your destination and ‘Cheapest Month’ instead of set dates. This will automatically show you prices for the cheapest month to that destination.
Completely open about your destination and dates? Then choose ‘Everywhere’ for your destination and see what comes up in the search. Then all you need to do is spend some time searching the options to see where you want to go and what fits your budget. If you have a specific country or month in mind, you can narrow down by these specific choices.
3. Research hotel prices before booking your flights.
I have found incredibly cheap flights to certain cities only to find out that the hotels are twice what I’d like to spend. If you’re super adventurous, you could always wait to find a hotel when you get there and save by going to a smaller local hotel that may not be on some of the booking sites.
If paying for the flights and hotels are too expensive to do at once, use sites like Booking that take no deposit and have the option of paying in full when you arrive. This isn’t available for all hotels, but you can find plenty that have this option. This will give you the time to save the money for your hotel before you go.
4.Eat local when you’re away.
Restaurants in the very touristy areas are always going to be more expensive. It may not be possible to do in all locations, but try to find a restaurant frequented by locals. You’ll often find that it’s not only cheaper, but the food is much better.
5. Use public transport.
Though it’s not always possible to avoid renting a car, when you are going to places with good public transport infrastructure, you can save loads of money. Plus, depending on the country, the public transport can be an adventure in itself!