How to travel on a BUDGET
You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy a plane ticket, and that’s kinda the same;) So, as we all want to travel as much as possible there is one issue, money. Fortunately there are many ways to save money while traveling and to travel on a budget. Here are some tips to do ANY trip on a budget!
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1. How to get there
The first thing you need to consider in you travel budget is how you reach your desired destination. The saying “All roads lead to Rome” is not entirely true. All airplanes, trains and busses lead to Rome is this case, but all at a different cost;) There are a wide variety of bus organisation, airlines and train services that open up many doors when it comes to budget travel.
The more flexible, the more budget-friendly you can travel
There is one golden rule: “The more flexible you are, the cheaper your trip is going to be.” In other words, the more flexible, the more budget-friendly traveling you can do. The prices of transportation all depend on the time of year (because of demand) and the departure- and arrival destinations.
The more flexible you can be with your departure and return dates, the more money you’ll be able to save, as the prices defer per day. The same goes for the departure destination and the arrival destinations, the more options, the cheaper it’s going to be. This flexibility strategy works with every form of transportation.
For example, you want to fly from the Netherlands to London, and there are 3 airports close to London and 3 dutch airports that are in your reach. Comparing the departure and arrival airports, to a variety of dates will give you the opportunity to compare the different possibilities and help you find the cheapest flights. A great tool to help you do this is the website www.google.com/flights.
Depending on which flight organisation you choose, it might be cheaper to book the departure and return flight as a package (you can also compare this on the google flights website).
Pack light and save some money on your travel budget
Nowadays, short distance flights fit perfectly in your travel budget because they are often very cheap. But since about 1 year you need to pay extra for your luggage. In many short-distance flights you’re only allowed to bring one small backpack free of costs, and everything else needs to be payed for. A little trick to save you a few euros on your travel budget is to pack light, and for example to share 1 piece of luggage with your travel companion.
Get familiar with the public transport
When you’ve landed and arrived at your destination, you first need to find your way to your hotel. There are many taxis lined up outside the airport, but there is often a much cheaper option: Public transport. Between almost any airport and popular travel destination is a bus or train line that offers and airport express service. Check google maps for the public transport or take a look at the website of the airport you are flying on about the public transport services.
2. Where to stay
At most travel destinations there are loads of hotels, hostels and airbnbs. If you want to save some money I’d advice you to book a while in advance and preferably close to places you want to visit. If there are no accommodations available close to where you want to go, make sure your accommodation is close to the public transport, so the distance is not an issue. Check www.airbnb.com, www.booking.com or www.hostelworld.com for the best accommodations. On all these websites you can filter the cost per night and the review score, helping you to select the perfect accommodation that suits your travel budget.
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3. How to explore
In many cities there are free city tours. Look up the free tours that are available at your destination and sign yourself up.
Just like the city tours, there are many more free activities you can do at your destination. Google in advance what free activities you can do and make it into a list. If you don’t know where you want to go, ask a local for tips. As they know all the ins and outs of their home town.
National days and weekend days often provide discount opportunities for attractions like museums, just like bringing your student identification card. Check in advance of your trip whether you can make use of such discounts and plan your days accordingly.
If you know you want to visit a specific attraction, but there are no discounts or national days coming up, you can consider buying your tickets in advance. On the websites of those attraction you can often preordering your tickets at a lower price, saving you a few euros compared to when you buy them at the door.
4. Where to eat
When you are out exploring, the thing most travellers spend money on is food and drinks. For example, you’re in a city and you get hungry. The most simple way is to stop at a restaurant and eat something there. But when you do this a couple of times, these costs will start building up.
Go for a travel budget-friendly meal
I’d advice you to buy your own food in a grocery store or at a local market. If you’ve got an apartment or hostel with a kitchen you can cook yourself. One thing you can do is to cook your own breakfast and/or do a lunch-picnic in the park. Some other tips are to bring some snacks in your bag and to refill your water bottle. As tab water is in most countries perfectly drinkable.
Check out restaurants that suit your travel budget
The time when you want to eat out and experience the local cuisine I’d advice you to check trip advisor for restaurants. On TripAdvisor you have the option to filter and select restaurants that are in your price range and have good reviews. This will save you a lot of time searching for affordable restaurants and makes sure you really enjoy the food!
Which of these tips did you think was most useful? Let me know in the comments. 🙂
Now you know you to travel on a budget! Have fun on your next trip, and hopefully you’ll be able to save loads of money so you can travel even more!
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