How to Avoid Overspending While Traveling
Travel is undeniably one of the things that one might look forward to. When planned right, costs are lower and any money spent is worth every penny. When travel plans are made inefficiently, you fall into the trap of overspending.
Given that you can’t plan for everything that happens whenever you’re out in the world, it’s better to avoid overspending while traveling. If that’s what you want to do, here are the parts you need to pay close attention to.
If you’re booking a flight – international or domestic – make sure that you book ahead of time as much as possible. Most ticket prices skyrocket during peak seasons, so off-peak travel dates may mean cheaper tickets. Track seat sale promos by visiting different airline websites and sign up for free alerts. If you’ve got a credit card that’s merchant branded with an airline, make sure to check if you have enough points to lower the cost of a flight or travel for free.
Wherever you’re going, make sure to research modes of transportation. Public transport is definitely the cheapest way to get around, but renting a car or a van may also be a good idea especially if you’re with a large group. In certain cities, such as Japan or London, almost everything is accessible by trains or buses, so look into getting passes for them – they cost less in the long run of your stay.
Most travelers make the mistake of spending a lot of money on accommodation. Sure, the amenities at swanky hotels are pretty amazing, but then, the prices are pretty crazy too.
Unless you plan on staying in your hotel room the entire time, you’re better off finding cheaper – and possibly homier – accommodation.
When looking for a place to stay, search for boutique hotels or inns which offer luxury comfort at cheaper prices. Airbnb is almost always an option, and provide an extra benefit that should help you spend less.
Food and cuisine
If you want to sample local cuisine, then the swanky restaurants aren’t the way to go. Instead, be on the lookout for food stalls and smaller diners peppered through the city. These places offer cheaper meals and authentic local flavor.
If you have friends who’re locals, ask them for recommendations. You can also do a bit of research to find the best places to eat without costing you much. Alternatively, you can buy ingredients and cook – if you’re booked at an Airbnb with a kitchen.
Related: Travel Debugger’s Food adventures
Visiting sites like Cash Cash Pinoy, Deal Grocer, and MetroDeal can get you discounts on tickets to all kinds of places. It’s also ideal to do a lot of research beforehand so that you know when these places are open, effectively preventing wasted time.
The most important things that you need to do when traveling are planning ahead of time, creating a budget and itinerary, bringing your credit card or ATM card, and getting insurance. Give yourself some room to breathe because just like temptations, you’ll never know what’s coming.
Related: Travel but don’t get broke
Kyle Kam is from MoneyMax.ph, a financial comparison website aiming to help Filipinos save money through diligent comparisons of financial products. Follow him on twitter @undisputedkyle