When I’m telling my family or my friends about my travels, the same question always pops up: “How do you find all that money to travel?”. People think that traveling is very expensive. I travel a lot. And no, I’m not rich. So how do I find money for my travels? You don’t have to be rich to travel! With some organization, it’s possible to travel with a small budget! I give you in this article 16 tips to save money before traveling, while planning the travel and during the travel.
How to save money before traveling
- Tip #1: Reduce your expenses. A coffee on the way to the office, a cocktail after work, partying every weekend, buying your favorite magazine every week… You might think that these small expenses don’t affect your budget, but they really do. Try to reduce it a bit to save more money for traveling.
- Tip #2: Make a nest egg. I save €10 every Sunday in my “travel jar”. In one year, that’s 520€ saved. Not bad!
- Tip #3: Ask for your family and friend’s help. For example, tell them that for your birthday, you would like a participation on your next trip.
How to save money when planning the trip
For the accommodation
Of course, if you want to spend 2 weeks in a 5 stars hotels all inclusive, it will be expensive. But if you are a little bit adventurous or if you don’t need a luxury hotel, there are other types of accommodations.
- Tip #4: Camping. All you need is a tent, a mattress, and a sleeping bag. You can find very good and cheap material in all sports shops. In some countries, wild camping is allowed. In some others, you can sleep in an official camping and have access to toilets and showers for only a few euros.
- Tip #5: Stay in hostels. If you don’t mind to share your room with other people, that’s the perfect solution. It’s considerably cheaper than hotels and moreover, you will meet a lot of people! Use Hostelworld to find your accommodation.
- Tip #6: Try couchsurfing. I never tried, but I would like to. Locals are offering you accommodation for free, usually you have to sleep on a coach. It’s a nice way to discover the local culture and to save money!
- Tip #7: Stay in an Airbnb. You can stay in an apartment that owners lend for travelers. It’s usually cheaper than hotels.
If you do prefer an hotel, there are some ways to save money:
- Tip #8: Use Booking. You probably already used this website to book your accommodation. But are you aware of all the advantages of Booking.com? When booking frequently on this website, you can become a “Genius client” and have some more advantages like discounts and special offers. When booking an accommodation, you will also receive a link to share with your friends. If one of your friends book his/her accommodation with this link, he/she will receive a 10% discount and you will receive a credit of €20 for your next booking! That’s a super easy way to save money 🙂
- Tip #9: Book your accommodation with Ryanair Rooms. The low-cost company also launched a service for hotel bookings. The big advantage? Every time you book an accommodation with Ryanair Rooms, 10% of the note will be converted into “credit” that you can use to pay for a flight!
For the transport
- Tip #10: Find the best fares for your flight. Nowadays, inside Europe, you can find a flight for less than €100 back and forth! Of course, you will probably fly with a low-cost company so don’t expect a high-level comfort. The best advice to save money for the flight is to be flexible with the dates (if you have this chance). I’m super lucky with my job and I’m very flexible, so when I’m looking for a flight, I just choose the cheapest one.
- Tip #11: Travel by train. To travel inside a country or even to cross a border, the train is a good option. For road trips, there is also the company Interrail who offers passes at good prices. I never tried it yet but I’m planning to do so!
- Tip #12: Travel by bus. It’s longer but it’s usually cheaper so it might be a good option too! Flixbus offers journeys at cheap prices.
- Tip #13: Split the expenses if you travel by car. It’s my personal opinion, but I don’t like to travel by car so I’m not the best person to give you advice about it. I know that there are some apps for car pooling. It’s a good way to save money and it’s better for the environment.
How to save money during the travel
Also during the travel, it’s possible to save money! Here are a few tips:
- Tip #14: Do free things. In lots of cities you can visit museums, churches and other attraction points for free. Sometimes, the free entrances are only valid during a special day, mostly on Sunday. You can also book a free walking tour in lots of cities. Make some research before you leave.
- Tip #15: Don’t spend too much money on food. No need to go twice a day to the restaurant every day. Grab a sandwich, buy some bread and cheese, or cook for yourself if you have a kitchen in your accommodation.
- Tip #16: Buy a city pass. The big cities usually offer a city card that gives access to all the touristic points, and sometimes even to the public transport. It’s usually cheaper to buy the pass than paying for everything separetely.
I hope this article will help you! If you have other tips to save money for traveling, feel free to share it!