40 Tips for Budget Travelers

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How to Travel for Cheap

How to Travel for CheapBy: Teena Celis

Everyone loves to travel to exotic places and create memories that will last a lifetime. It’s our poor groaning wallets and the look on our financial adviser’s face that keep us from giving in to our wishes. So what gives? Wouldn’t you love to travel more often without going bankrupt? What if I told you that you can actually plan two trips instead of one on the same budget?

Here are 40 great tips on how you can travel and save money at the same time:

Tips For Budget Travel Arrangements

Use the following tips to plan your budget travel:

1. Airline Tickets: Always plan your trip in advance, visit discount websites for good deals and search for combination flights to save money.

2. Connecting Flights: Opt for more connecting flights with stopovers to save money. It might be a bother to have more stopovers and connect to multiple flights but the savings are great if you can wing it.

3. Pack Light: You’ll have to pay for additional luggage, so stick to the luggage weight restrictions of your airline.

4. Save On Extra Baggage: Fill up your suitcase with old clothes that you can discard during your trip. This way you can get a suitcase of new clothes and purchases without paying for extra baggage.

5. Buy Round Trip Tickets: Round trip tickets work out cheaper than one-way tickets. Buy a round trip ticket even if you’re not sure of your exact date of return.

6. Return To The Same Airport: It’s much cheaper to fly in and out of the same airport. This works out well for car rentals as well.

7. Travel To Stopover Countries: If your flight is scheduled to stop over at a country you’re planning to visit, arrange to stay a few days and hop on the connecting flight after a few days. This way, you can visit two countries for the price of one trip.

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Tips For Economical Eating

Use the following tips to eat economically and save:

8. Plan Your Meals: Check out cheap restaurants, eateries and food stands on your trip route before you set out. Planning where to eat saves time and money.

9. Cook Small Meals: If your hostel has a kitchen, or if you are camping outside, cook your own meals to save money.

10. Carryover Dinners For Breakfast: While eating dinner, order bread or a dish that you can eat for breakfast. This works out cheaper than eating breakfast at a restaurant.

11. Carry Basic Food Items: Always buy bread, jam, cheese and noodle soup packets at supermarkets. You can quickly put together your meals anywhere and save money.

12. Eat At Cafes And Bakeries: Buy fresh foods from bakeries and cafes; this works out much cheaper than expensive dinners and lunches. Also snack on fresh fruit and bread at night to avoid heavy dinners.

Tips For Renting Cars Cheaply

Use the following tips to rent cars without breaking the bank:

13. Be Particular: Car rentals are more expensive when they’re one way. Plan your vacation route and make sure that you use same city pick up and drop off rentals as much as possible. If your trip involves two cities or countries, rent cars only in those specific places to avoid costs.

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14. Avoid Car Rental Insurance: If you have a credit card or an accident insurance policy that includes car rentals, give the particulars to the rental people. Don’t use the car rental company’s insurance, as this will be more expensive.

15. Rent The Size You Need: If you don’t need a larger car, don’t rent it. Rents differ based on car type, value and amenities. Rent based on your needs only; don’t pay for what you don’t really need.

16. Rent Children Car Seats: Some people carry baby car seats with them while they travel. With the extra baggage charges at airlines, it makes sense to check if the rental company has the kids’ car seats you need.

17. Fill your Rental Car Personally: If your rental needs fuel, use regular gas; avoid special fuel types even if you want better performance. Reject any offer by the gas company to fill up the tank for you, as they will charge for a full tank regardless of how much fuel was already present.

18. Use Car Rental Coupon Codes: List out the car rental companies you can use on your trip and check online if they offer coupon codes for discounts that you can use.

Economic Transportation at Your Destination

Use these tips to travel economically at your destination:

19. Use Local Trains: Use local trains at your destination for quick inter-city travel. If your destination is Europe, you can leverage multi-trip discounts that the city metros and subways offer such as the 3-day unlimited travel pass. Using Rail Europe to travel through Europe is a good way to take advantage of discount fares and promotions.

20. Use Night Flights And Trains: For long transportation, travel at night via train or flight. You can save money on accommodations and have more time to enjoy your trip by sleeping through your journeys.

21. Take Buses: Travel shorter or overnight distances by bus to save money and to get better quality sleep during night travel.

22.  Avoid Using Taxis: Taxis are an expensive deal, especially the welcome taxis at airports. It’s all a scam to milk your funds. Subways, buses and other local transportation forms will work out much cheaper.

23.  Drive short distances: If a journey takes one hour by plane, you’ll need at least four to five hours to travel that distance by car. However, with the hassle of getting to the airport, checking in and waiting for the flight, you might as well drive the distance. Plus, you can carry more bags when you drive.

Currency Conversion

Use the following tips to maximize currency conversion rates:

24.  Use Currency Conversion Rates To Plan Your Trip: There’s no point in traveling to a place on budget if you’re going to spend the savings on low conversion rates. Opt for destinations like Honduras, Vancouver and other places that offer a better exchange rate. Make your dollar work for you.

25.  Where To Exchange Currency: Exchange centers are notorious for offering low rates. Get your currency exchanged at the airport, at local currency exchange clubs, or withdraw cash from the ATM in local currency.

26.  Book Tickets Using Local Currency: It’s much cheaper to book tickets using local currency. You can do this by visiting the local version of the website where you book tickets.

Economical Accommodations

Use these tips to manage your accommodations economically:

27.  Stay in the next town: If the city you’re visiting is a tourist hot spot, accommodations will be very expensive. Stay nights for cheap at the next town and use local bus transports to visit the town of your choice.

28.  Swapping Home Stays: Use online resources to find people at your destination who would like to exchange homes with you during your vacation. This method works out cheaply while offering all homely amenities.

29.  Shift Hotels: If you’re already booked at a hotel that’s expensive, shop around for cheap hotels and ask for free upgrades or even free nights if you shift hotels. Small hotels will do this to get your business.

30.  Consider Vacation Homes: Stay at vacation homes instead of hotels if you plan to stay more than a day or two. This option works out much cheaper and will be more comfortable.

31.  Book Suites:  Book a two-bedroom suite instead of separate bedrooms. You’ll have enough room for your entire family, privacy and savings to enjoy.

32.  Buy an RV: A recreation vehicle or even a camper is an ideal option if you are traveling within your country. You don’t have to pay for expensive hotel stays, can cook in your camper, enjoy the outdoors and avoid car rentals.

33.  Stay At Hostels: Hostel stay is not only for the young anymore. Hostels are much cheaper than hotels and best of all, you get to use the kitchen as well.

Save Money on Shopping

Use the following tips to save money on shopping:

34.  Buy Duty Free Goods: Duty free shops at airports are less expensive than department stores at your destination. You’ll save more money by buying tax-free goods.

35.  Leverage Sales Tax Refunds: Countries like Australia allow travelers to get reimbursed for sales tax at airport customs if they buy goods from the same retailer for a minimum amount. Check for similar options at your destination.

36.  Avoid Tourist Spots: Amenities, food and stay options surrounding tourist spots are all expensive. Avoid tourist spots and explore local culture and life.

37.  Walk: Walk as much as possible to get around at your destination. It’s a wonderful way to absorb the culture, to buy interesting souvenirs, and to take pictures.

38.  Buy Local Products: Enjoy local products and food instead of favoring your regular brands, which might be imported. Local brands are always cheaper.

39.  Travel During Off Seasons: Everything comes at a premium during high-season travel and especially during festivals and holidays. Travel off-season to benefit from regular prices.

40.  Buy Artisan Souvenirs: Buy artisan-made items such as tribal art, pottery and jewelry as souvenirs. You’ll be helping artisans survive while saving a lot of money on souvenirs.

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Teena Celis is content developer for Adrenalin, an Australian experience provider offering experiences like sky diving, hot air ballooning and rally driving all across Australia.

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