Trade expensive hotel suites for dorm rooms in hostels. Sharing a room naturally divides the costs, and communal bunk rooms offer the opportunity to meet people who might be keen to explore with you. Let’s talk about how to travel on a budget!
Other great alternatives are websites like Airbnb and Couchsurfing, where you simply book a spare room in a local person’s house or apartment. It’ll halve the price and allow you an authentic snapshot of real life in the city.
Consider your host your very own, personal tour guide, filled with insider tips for the best eateries and tourist spots in that neighborhood Hostel.
When traveling abroad, hostels offer inexpensive lodging (and occasionally meals) to travelers. You may have to share a room and bathroom with other travelers, but you get your own bed, and you just may make some new traveling friends while you’re there.
Because hostels require you to share space, they work best if you’re flying solo or traveling as a couple instead of as a family. A typical European hostel costs anywhere from $20 to $40 per night.
Why you should book your next flight on a Tuesday
Opt to travel on a Tuesday. Midweek travel prices are lower as a premium is added to weekend flights, and you’ll breeze through shorter queues at airport check-in desks and security.
Fly economy too – there’s no need to upgrade, no matter how nice Business Class looks. The money you save on cheap seats can be spent on food or accommodation when you arrive.
Low-cost, budget airlines are fine for short flights and regularly have cheap deals. If you’re planning a weekend trip, try to pack light and use only hand luggage, saving yourself a bit of money on hold luggage.
Early mornings and late nights are also less popular and more affordable times to fly, as are Thanksgiving and the eves and days of Christmas and New Year’s.
If you want to find the best month to take your trip, plug your home airport and getaway location into Google Flights or Kayak Explore to see the cheapest times to fly.
Besides saving money, avoiding peak travel days will often mean you’ll travel on slightly less-crowded flights and go through shorter airport security lines
How to find good cheap travel deal
Expert budget travelers save money by recognizing a cheap travel deal when they see one. But how do you know what’s a good deal? Benchmarking.
When you begin your vacation search, keep track of prices on everything from accommodations to airfares to bundled flight-and-hotel vacation packages. In this post, I’ve shared all my top tips for traveling on a budget.
How to travel on a low budget
There are very few places that can’t be traveled on a low budget. There are free things to do in every destination, so you just need to manage your expectations of how many expensive activities you can do there or how often you can eat out at restaurants, for example.
Once you’ve planned your budget, try not to overspend; it’ll only cause you more stress later on your trip or when you get home, A great top tip for traveling on a budget is to look for free things to do wherever you’re heading.
It could be that certain museums are free on certain days or that there are local events on. Don’t forget the classic ‘free walking tour’, a great way of seeing the city you are visiting. Just remember that it’s customary to tip at the end.
Cook for yourself, and shop at the supermarket
Another tip for traveling on a budget is to shop at the supermarket and cook for yourself. Factor in trying some local delicacies into your budget (if you can), but beyond that, prepare your own food.
Most hostels have kitchen facilities that are available for everyone to use Also, having access to a kitchen at your accommodation is a great way to save money during your trip.
Dining out can be extremely expensive, especially when you are on vacation. Many hostels (and even some boutique hotels or B&Bs) have open kitchens that you can use.
And if you’re looking to spend even less on lodging, Dominique and Franco say there are “endless” opportunities to stay for free. One option is Couchsurfing, a website that connects travelers to locals’ couches (or, in some cases, guest rooms) for free.
Couchsurfing is a great way to stay free
The company has put various safeguards in place—like identity verification, an on-call safety team, and risk detection systems, a representative told TIME over email.
Their website also has a safety guide for guests Moreover, because of the rise of the sharing economy in the last few years, there are now websites that let you not only stay with locals but share rides, meals, train tickets, gear, and much more!
These websites not only save you a TON of money, but they also get you off the tourist track and into the local life.
Chase Sapphire Preferred card: Best travel rewards credit card with 60,000 bonus points worth $750
Our top choice for travel rewards credit cards with a stellar sign-up bonus is the Chase Sapphire Preferred card. You can earn 60,000 bonus points worth $750 after hitting the minimum spend requirement with your everyday purchases.
The card earns 3x the points on dining, 2x the points on other travel purchases, and has no foreign transaction fees. You can convert the points to both hotel and flight partner programs, or book hotels and flights directly through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal to get a 25% bonus value on your points.
Keep these ingredients in mind when shopping for a travel-friendly credit card: no foreign transaction fee, a microchip, and generous rewards. The Chase Sapphire Reserve Visa ($550 annual fee) offers a chip for secure transactions.
You earn 60,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 within 90 days of opening your account. If you would rather trade significant rewards for no annual fee, consider the PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature, which is chip- and PIN-enabled.
How to travel on a budget
Travelling is such a wonderful opportunity, and being able to travel on a budget makes it more accessible to people. Also, if you spend less on one adventure, you have money to spend on another.
Budget travel doesn’t have to be any less fun, either. There are cheap places to travel to all over the world, including plenty of places to travel on a budget in Europe.
There are lots of ways to save money when you’re traveling, from planning your travel budget carefully before you leave, considering backpacking and car-sharing, through to the choices you make (e.g. food) when you are on your trip If travel is something you and your family love to do, it’s always a challenge when your budget bites back.
However, by adjusting your priorities, being willing to compromise, and rethinking what it means to travel, you might be able to find a little wiggle room in your finances.
Regardless of what your Twitter feed tells you, travel doesn’t always have to be four-star resorts and top-notch dining. For some, the experience of exploring a new locale is enough.