Sure, traveling can be stressful, tiring, and even expensive if you don’t know what you’re doing. However, if you use these 7 proven tips for cheap travel, you can save money and still have the vacation of your dreams.
Tip1. Get Free Accommodation
Whether you’re backpacking through Europe or hiking around Southeast Asia, you’ll need a place to crash every night. And, believe it or not, you don’t have to pay full price for that accommodation! There are plenty of websites that offer free lodging as Couchsurfing, BeWelcome in exchange for something as small as writing an honest review. These sites can help you save up to 90% on your next vacation.
Traveling as a Group? Split Rental Costs: If you’re traveling with friends and family members, staying at one house can significantly cut down on costs per head.
Tip2. How to find cheap flights
.Know when to buy plane tickets round trip: A round-trip ticket might cost more than a one-way ticket, but it will save you money in the long run. Airfare tickets increase in price as you add more stops or layovers onto your travel itinerary. In fact, there are times when it’s actually cheaper to buy a flight that includes a stopover instead of paying for an entirely separate plane ticket. For example, if you have a layover between flights that is longer than 12 hours and at least six hours before your connecting flight time, then buying a round-trip plane ticket will save you money versus purchasing two one-way plane tickets from A to B and from B back
to A. As with all things travel, however, it pays to be flexible—the same can’t be said if you’re not allowed to change your return flight date after buying a non-refundable package deal.
.Book early: Most airfares tend to go up closer to the departure date; purchase flights early enough in advance so that you don’t get caught paying more just because someone else bought their seat before you did.
.Sign up for Fare Alert emails: Airlines offer fare alerts on many popular routes which can notify you via email when pricing changes or sale ends on a particular flight. Signing up takes seconds and doesn’t commit you to anything—you won’t end up with any spammy emails unless airlines send you sales alerts.
.Keep an eye out: Flights often go on sale around holidays and other large events, like concerts and sporting matches. Check airline websites regularly for updates about these deals so that you can snag them as soon as they’re available.
Tip3. Stay in Hostels
Hostels aren’t just a great way to meet other travelers, they can also be an affordable way to find accommodations in popular destinations. Hostel rates can vary, but you can often expect cheap dorm beds and a shared bathroom in addition to shared kitchen facilities. A single room will usually cost more, but hostels are still a relatively cheap place to stay compared with hotels—especially if you book your room well in advance. Additionally, some hostels have private rooms that are significantly less expensive than hotel rooms elsewhere. In some cases, however, hostels may offer amenities like Wi-Fi or tours that may make them more expensive than hotels in similar destinations. If you opt for a hostel instead of a hotel, do research ahead of time on different hostels so you know what kind of amenities they offer as well as their reviews. To keep costs down, always bring your own towel and travel mug when staying at any type of accommodation. If it’s not provided at no extra charge by your lodging option, bring one from home so there’s no chance someone else used it before you did! Likewise, pack items like soap and shampoo in plastic bottles when traveling; these products don’t last long when exposed to humidity from showers or water pressure from sinks. Those plastic bottles should come from home too! Be sure to use these common-sense packing tips whether you’re bringing toiletries along with clothing or not. You’ll save space and money while packing lights because every item has to serve multiple purposes if possible. If you have already done all of these things, congratulations! It’s never a bad idea to become even more efficient, though!
Tip4. Take Advantage of Student Programs
If you’re still in school, that means you have access to some amazing deals on flights and hotel stays. Most airlines offer student deals that are either half-off or full-off (that is, free) if you show your ID upon check-in. Not only that, but some hotel chains will also offer discounts exclusively for students. Take advantage of these programs while they last! In a few years’ time, you won’t be able to take advantage of them anymore—and trust us when we say they’re worth it. From Southwest Airlines’ Education Discounts program to Expedia’s Go You promotion, there are lots of ways to save money as a student.
Tip5. Take Rideshare Apps like Uber
Just as technology made companies like AirBnB possible, it’s also revolutionizing how people travel. One of today’s hottest new technologies is rideshare apps, which allows you to use your smartphone to connect with local drivers offering a car ride in exchange for a fee. Instead of paying $20 per hour for a taxi, you can split those costs with 3 or 4 other riders and wind up paying less than $10 per hour! Plus, Uber is currently offering a $20 credit on your first ride with promo code REALITYCODE. (Who knows – maybe you’ll even get lucky and find yourself matched up with AngelList CEO Naval Ravikant! 😉 To take advantage of these sweet deals when traveling, just enter your destination into either Uber or Lyft, book your ride, and voila – you have yourself an instant discount on transportation. And don’t worry if you’re not sure how to navigate through strange cities; every driver has GPS so they’ll be able to meet you exactly where you want! If both services are available in your area (check via their websites), I recommend using both services so that when one service isn’t operating properly, there’s another option ready for backup. Either way: no more taking taxis from sketchy-looking guys who charge by mileage – love it! Also, a bonus tip: don’t forget about international Uber promotions! These frequently include deep discounts at launch so signup early before everyone else does – usually by following their Twitter account (@Uber). Oh yeah…don’t forget about Lyft too!
Tip6. No Car? No Problem!: Public transportation is another great way to travel cheaply. In some cities, like London and Tokyo, subway passes provide all-day or multi-day access at affordable rates. Plus, you can explore parts of town on foot that aren’t within walking distance from metro stations. To avoid rush hour and tourist hotspots, stay off trains during peak times and ride early in the morning or late at night when fewer locals take public transit.
Tip7. Learn Local Customs: You may think foreign prices are high until you learn about local customs! In some cultures such as South America where everyone speaks Spanish, store owners often charge tourists three times what they charge locals for similar goods and services—but most tourists won’t know if they don’t ask.