Travel is often associated with wealth. Most people dream of one day being able to travel the world. But guess what? It doesn't need to be this way. Even a college student can take some great trips while on a budget.
In this article, we've compiled the best, most practical advice. Here you will find straightforward and actionable ideas to save you money while traveling.
After reading this article, you will feel better about planning the trip you've always wanted to take because you'll know you can afford it.
So, let's get into our travel hacks.
1. Explore Cool Spots Nearby
We don't mean within 15 minutes of your home. But, you'd be surprised how fast a four to six-hour trip in the car can go, especially if you have some friends or family tagging along. Chances are, there are a lot more cool places within driving distance of your home than you realize. Sometimes these shorter trips are all you need to scratch the travel itch and have some great experiences.
2. Travel to Countries Where Your Money has the Most Value
There are many countries where travel is relatively cheap. Cheap, meaning the American dollar will work for you, not against you.
If you have a hankering for some overseas travel, consider planning a trip to one of these destinations. You'll find they have plenty to offer, and you won't break the bank.
3. Consider Alternative Souvenirs
Everyone likes souvenirs. However, these little trinkets can become a money pit - and does a bobble-head have that much value?
Instead of buying touristy souvenirs, consider buying something cheap that the locals use daily. This may be a type of food or any other little object that holds meaning.
Another idea, consider sketching a quick picture or writing a poem while you are in a spot you want to remember. Doing something like a sketch or poem will help you remember how you felt when you were there.
And, of course, pictures.
4. Travel in the Off-Season
Avoid holidays, summertime, and spring break. You won't just be paying premium for flights; you'll pay top dollar for hotels, food, and transportation as well.
If your friends want to go somewhere extravagant during spring break, step out and suggest a more reasonable option. Then, when the season is right, you can take that prodigal excursion.
The benefits of traveling in the off-season go beyond just money. You will also have shorter lines, more hotel openings, and a more authentic look at life in another area (locals know tourist season. As a result, the general population is usually more retracted).
5. Save up Before You Travel
Do you want to travel like a queen? With money being no object? You can. But you must save.
Saving money before you travel allows you to be in control of the trip you take. If you want to save for three years and then take six months off and travel to Europe, you can. You just need to plan properly. We all have expenses we could cut out of our life.
This article gives an in-depth guide to budgeting and saving for your adventures.
Saving up for your trip will help you in multiple ways. First, it will keep you from limiting yourself while you travel - you can do the things you wanted to do.
Second, though saving up sounds awful and boring, it can actually bring you great pleasure.
Anticipation is said to be one of the best things about a trip. Saving allows you to have that joy. You can plan, dream, and smile about all the wonderful things you will do on your big vacation. Anticipation also helps us through the daily grind.
So save up - you'll have a happier trip overall.
6. Tour Cities by Foot
Not only does walking give you exercise, but it saves you money. Just think, every step you take, money is being deposited into your bank. Public transportation can get pricey and hectic.
While on your trip, remind yourself to take things slow. Walking immerses you in the culture. When you walk a route you usually would have driven, you'll be surprised how much more you see.
7. Eat with the Locals
This means you'll need to walk a mile or so away from major tourist attractions. We all know that eating in a popular tourist location is very expensive.
When you choose to wait and eat somewhere else, you save money and experience the real culture of the area.
Of course, it's also wise to pack your food and not eat out at all. Restaurants are expensive—end of story.
8. Book Flights Early
Booking a flight in advance will do great things.
First, it allows you to get the best deals. You can take your time to surf the internet for deals without feeling rushed into a decision.
Second, booking flights early help you begin planning for your trip and gives you something to look forward to. When you book that flight, you get that we're actually going to do this feeling - a lot of fun.
Third, it allows you to start planning other things, like how you're going to save money on lodging, and where the best free sight-seeing locations are.
Trips are more fun when you don't worry about money. And the only way to honestly not worry about money is to make a clear plan before you begin your journey.
Follow the tips above, and slowly work your way up to bigger trips.
Finally, start planning your dream adventure. You'll be there before you know it. Because once you make a plan, you'll begin to think about how you can reach your goals.
Also, when you purchase from Charming Shark, a portion of the proceeds go to AccessSurf, this is an organization that helps empower people with disabilities via access to water programs.
Written By: Gideon Zielinski