7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply

Dr. Jessie Voigts's picture

Every holiday offers endless possibilities to enjoy, rest, and unwind. The sight of a beautifully blue ocean or the sky that manages to meet the horizon is enough to make all our city-troubles vanish (at least for the time being!). While most of us have come to the conclusion that for a journey to be relaxing and rewarding, it has to be costly and oh-so-expensive - well, that’s not always the case. It is possible to travel to any corner of the world without spending half a fortune. Here are 7 tips on how to travel cheaply.


7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply


Use websites to find great deals for hotels and flights

Nothing beats having a great travel plan and sticking to it. No matter where you want to travel, make sure you don’t book flight tickets at the last minute. Although the perfect time to book your flight tickets would be at least 3 months in advance, you don’t want to overdo the planning bit and book tickets a year early. A number of airlines offer great flight deals which you might be missing out on if you book too early. 

Hotels can get quite expensive and booking a room in the last minute can drill a hole in your pocket. Try looking up at the reviews of hotels before booking in them. This will give you an idea about their services, allow you to get great discounts, deals, and offers – which you don’t want to miss. Additionally, you can also try staying at cheaper (and comfortable) private homes rather than in hotels. 

Always check up on websites like this that offer great deals and money-saving offers for both flights and hotels. Nothing beats a little patience and lots of planning. 


Avoid peak season for travel

Yes, peak season is packed for a reason. And yes, it makes sense to travel for a vacation during the peak season. If you can, try to avoid hitting some of the most popular destinations during the peak season. When you go during the off-season, you are bound to get some great deals. Regardless of when you travel, make sure you get hold of museum passes wherever possible.

Avoiding peak season - ways to save money on travel (this is Ireland in October!)

Ireland in October!

Go on group tours – Book last minute tours

Similar to cruise lines offering its last minute boarders incredible money-saving deals, group tour operators also provide cool discounts on last minute bookings. Even if half the seats go unfilled, travel companies still have to operate their planned tours – with or without filling all the seats. This is when they bring their hefty price tags down and try to entice people to booking their tours. You can easily get up to 10 – 15% discount on last minute deals!

Go on a group tour! From 7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply


Travel by campervan

Travelling by campervan is probably the best way to reduce accommodation and flight charges. Moreover, it also gives you a chance to experience a home-like environment even in faraway places. A campervan can accommodate your entire family and allow you to prepare your own food. It not only helps you save money, but also makes it easier for you to travel at your pace, offers you more independence, flexibility, and an element of adventure. Some places are better suited to this than others, such as Australia or the UK, where campervan companies like this have everything set up and ready to go for you.

Travel by campervan (although not one this old!). From 7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply

Old school campervan - you'll probably want a newer model, but this is so cute!

Eat like the locals

Although these days you get a Papa Johns pizza even in the bylanes of Phuket, it is always advisable to savor the local flavors. It not only gives you a feel of the culture and cuisine of the place, but also helps you save a buck or two in exchange. Be willing to experiment with the local cuisine. Shed your fears, you may never know that the dodgy looking place in the corner of the street offers delicious and cheap food – unless you try it. 

Eat like the locals do! From 7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply


Leave the baggage – at least most of it – at home

When you want to travel cheap, you need to be willing to travel light as well. Remember, if you pack more, you will not be able to buy many new clothes and souvenirs abroad. Pack light, make use of luggage jackets, and try to cram in as much as you can in your hand luggage so that you don’t have to check luggage in at airports. If your travel itinerary involves lots of flights, then checking in luggage everywhere will leave you dry. 

Pack light! From 7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply



Get good exchange rates before leaving for destination

Plan ahead and secure the best exchange rate for the currency you are seeking. Get currency for your entire visit if the rates are good. Don’t wait till you reach the airport to exchange currency – it’s a lot costlier there. Moreover, withdrawing money from ATMs or using credit cards abroad can incur hefty commission fees. Instead of using cards, you can carry cash around with you. However, if you are a little hesitant about carrying so much cash on person, then make sure you withdraw quite a bit of money at each withdrawal to save on fees.  

Get good exchange rates! From 7 Tips for Travelling Cheaply



These sure-fire tips for travelling cheap will come in handy the next time you are bit by the travel bug! Do you have any to add?




Photos: Wandering Educators, Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC), Mick mft, Takeaway, Ian Knox, Joel Carillet