We all love a good vacation. Whether it’s to the nearest coast or the other side of the planet, millions of us take multiple trips every year. All that holidaying can cause some serious damage to our bank balance, leaving us short on cash for the rest of the year.
It doesn’t have to be this way, though. If you’re interested in traveling more but keeping costs down, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 7 cost-cutting trips for your next travel plans!
1. Travel at low season
One of the most simple and obvious ways to save money on your travels is to visit places in their low or off-season. This may not sound appealing, but if planned right, it can be just as good (even better) than traveling at peak times. Often you will find traveling during high season actually means there are more tourist traps, more street vendors, hiked hotel prices and hiked attraction prices. Simply traveling at this time can add up to 50% to your overall costs! Travel during the low season, avoid the tourist crowds and save money.
2. Get Cashback on your stay
We spoke to travel experts at getyourstay.com who told us that cashback deals are their no. 1 tip when it comes to booking travel and accommodation. “Most people go straight for major hotel chains,” they said, “but if you are looking for something unique, you may find yourself saving a packet!” And they’re right. Many holidays online now offer cashback on your stay, meaning you’ll have some bonus cash to spend while you’re there. You can even use that bonus cash to spend on cool activities while traveling, like whale watching in Los Angeles!
3. Be flexible
A key money-saving tip: be flexible. Most people want to book a nice mid-morning flight and stay in their hotel Saturday through Saturday. Due to these human patterns, there are some easily recognizable times that are cheaper or more expensive. For example, if you’re willing to start your holiday with an 11 pm flight, or stay midweek in a hotel and skip the weekends, you’ll find yourself spending far less than the family traveling in peak hours.
4. Explore on foot
We aren’t suggesting you walk to your destination! But once you’re there, why not explore on foot? Traveling on public transport can be both expensive and uncomfortable. Exploring on foot means you’ll see far more local scenery and possibly interact with more people, as well as save money. Some public transport systems are also very expensive, while taxis and other personal hire vehicles also pack a financial punch.
5. Eat local
It can be all too easy to fall into the tourist traps in the busiest parts of whatever town or city you are visiting. In these areas, you will find chain restaurants designed to extract as much money as possible from unsuspecting tourists. Do some research and look for spots where locals eat. These restaurants will not only be cheaper, but they will also most likely serve far more superior food. If the locals are eating there, it’s probably good. This is true of anywhere in the world from New York City to Vietnam!
6. Check your money
This tip involves a bit of prior planning. Using credit and debit cards abroad can lead to extra fees and interest costs on top of your spending. These are unwelcome surprises. So, to save money, check in advance if your bank has any travel fees. If they do, look for alternatives. For example, there are many app-based bank accounts these days that offer fee-free travel services. Another choice is to buy an exchange currency. When doing this, keep on top of current currency trends – or seek advice from someone who does – to know the best time to buy.
7. Stay on the outskirts
Our final tip of the top 7 is being flexible on where you stay within a city or area. Staying right in the thick of it all might seem most appealing – and we can see why – but it’s very rarely cheap. If you’re willing to try a new area further outside the city, or a different sport altogether, you may find yourself making very big savings. Research the areas available in the city. You’ll probably find an up-and-coming area with plenty to visit, at a fraction of the price.
With these 7 tips, you should be well on your way to reducing the overall cost of your holiday plans. A combination of some or all of these together will change your budget completely. Who knows, you might even be able to afford an extra trip next year! Happy travels!