Whether the economy is strong or wobbly, your travel dreams may refuse to be bounded by them. If you can’t resist the wanderlust but often worry about your pocket become lighter with every flight and hotel booking, not to mention the expenses incurred during your stay, take heart for you are not alone. Rising expenses may act as a big deterrent for many wishing to go on a vacation. We bring you five travel tips with which you can save some considerable amount of money that could be spent better on your present or next tour.
1. Target the off-season: Unless you need to attend any specific event or festival, try to travel during the off-season. From getting plenty of budget and cost-effective accommodation options and cheaper airfare, you will have a far more enjoyable vacation during off-season travel. In case you must travel during the peak season, a way to cut costs is to target the weekdays rather than the weekends, when flights and hotels usually cost more.
2. Opt for B&Bs: Instead of fancy hotels, book yourself into cozy, neat B&Bs, where you will not only save some precious money but even get to taste delicious local cuisine and even interact with the local people (your hosts, for one) to get a glimpse into their daily life and culture. Perhaps this unmatched warmth and cultural insight (often at a fraction of what a hotel stay would cost) is what drive people to look for B&Bs. A close competitor to B&Bs are the private rooms that you can book via Airbnb.
3. Cook your own meals: There are several B&Bs, hostels, guesthouses, and campsites that give you access to the kitchen. Buying your own groceries and cooking would let you sample some fresh local produce and even save heavily since eating out a meal can set you back considerably. Even when you don’t have access to the kitchen, you can always prepare a sandwich (or a similar meal) that doesn’t need cooking.
4. Use your travel credit card wisely: Most travel credit cards have loyalty and reward programs that will let you amass points, which can be redeemed later. From frequent flyer programs and hotel programs to shopping at specific stores or for brands, you can stack up your points quickly if you plan your itinerary a bit carefully to make the most of these loyalty and reward programs. Then, on redeeming your points, you may get to fly and stay in your chosen hotels for a fraction of what you would have otherwise paid.
5. Use rail/bus passes and public transport: Instead of hiring cabs and paying steep hourly waiting rates while they wait for you at your hotel/B&B or outside tourist places, try to use public transport as much as you can. Buy all day rail or bus passes to move around in a cost-effective way. You may even rent bicycles or bikes in some places (on an hourly basis), which too is a good way to cut costs and visit various places of interest.
The next time you plan your travel, use these tips to make it lighter on your pocket.