The number one misconception about travel is this: Travel is expensive. It’s not true! Travel can be as expensive or inexpensive as you want it to be. It all depends on how much you want to travel. With the right tips and strategies, you can literally go anywhere in the world. Here are the best ways to have an amazing trip, even on the tightest of budgets!
Sign Up for Deal Alerts
Whether you choose to sign up for Scott’s Cheap Flights, Google Flights Alerts, or another flight alert program, this is the most effortless way to find a deal on your dream destination airfare. You just indicate where you want to go, and the website will e-mail you when there’s a great deal available! Just keep in mind that the best deals most likely won’t be on your ideal dates. That leads me to my next point…
Way more here: How to Find Cheap Flights
This is more important than saving on airfare because this will help you save on airfare. Be flexible on your travel dates. Be flexible on your schedule when you get to your destination. If you leave your accommodation a little earlier, you might have a popular attraction to yourself for a little while. If you take a walking tour on a Monday morning, it’ll likely be less crowded than that same tour on a Saturday afternoon.
More here: 5 Habits of Flexible Travelers
Go to the Grocery
If dining out is your thing, by all means, make reservations at that famous restaurant! But if food is just fuel to you, get it where it’s cheapest–at the local grocery store! You might be surprised at how good some of the ready-made food is at grocery stores around the world. The best we’ve found have been the sushi in Japan (and not just at the grocery stores, also at the gas stations!), the sandwiches in Austria, and everything in Hawaii!
Find the Freebies
Many museums let people in for FREE one day a week or one day per month. All the Smithsonian Museums in Washington, D.C., are always free. Many outdoor experiences are completely free, and often you’ll find that breakfast is included with your accommodation in cities around Europe, Morocco, or even the United States. Check for accommodations that come with breakfast when booking your travels!
Some of my most popular posts are all about the freebies: FREE Things to Do in Cheyenne, FREE Things to Do in Charleston, FREE Things to Do in Key West, and FREE Things to Do in Washington, D.C., are some of my most-viewed posts ever!
Keep reading: Budget Mistakes on Travel and How to Avoid Them
Speaking of FREE, how about saving your travel money by leaving out the rental car and gas entirely? This is my favorite way to save, mostly because I don’t like to drive anyway! While many destinations require having a car to use, you might be surprised at just how many amazing places can be explored on foot or with easy and affordable public transportation.
Between the rental car shortage of 2021, the chip factory fire preventing new cars from being completed, and the gas crisis of 2022, a lot of people are discovering and embracing the magic of traveling car-free!
Also read: Where to Travel in the World without a Car
and Where to Travel in the United States without a Car
This seems obvious, but it’s worth noting! Can you go one day a week without going out for coffee? Can you eat at home a little more often? Can you repurpose or dress up something in your closet instead of buying something new this time? You might be surprised at how small things add up to big savings over just a few weeks!
More here: 6 Unexpected Ways I Saved Money for Travel
Know When It’s Okay to Splurge
It’s great to save your money, but if you’re too miserly to part with any of it, what’s the purpose? If there’s something you’ve always wanted to do, in a place you’ve always wanted to go, do it! Maybe it’s a scenic flight in Hawaii, or a hot air balloon ride in Cappadocia, or afternoon tea at the Savoy, or swimming with manatees in Florida. Whatever it is, make it happen. Memories last longer than money–and memories don’t come attached to inflation!
Read next: Travel Splurges Worth the Price
Want more? Get all my money saving tips and strategies for traveling on a dime on my dedicated Saving and Money Page!
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