Travelling is probably as easy as it gets right now with so many accessible destinations and transport options. However, prices of flight tickets and accommodation are often over the top.
Though, there are still ways to travel for cheap, you just have to dig deep enough. Or you will be lucky enough to find the perfect bargain very quickly. In this article, we will give you 15 tips which you can use to travel for cheap! Buckle your seatbelt, this is going to be a quick and practical read!
How is travelling for cheap even possible?
While it might sound impossible, at the end of the day it’s just about utilizing and taking advantage of the right apps and websites which will save your money. To travel for cheap, you must find ways to lower your expenses as much as you can or even how to make money while travelling.
This all requires the right mentality which will allow you to travel wherever you want. Travelling overseas can also be done for cheap. Yes, you did just read that right. No, you won’t be able to experience the most luxurious and fancy feeling, but you will still get the chance to experience different cultures and explore sights!
Without further ado, let’s get to the tips which will enable you to make your travel dreams come true and truly get the bang for the buck.
Here are 15 tips for budget travelling in 2023:
1. Be realistic
Look at your current financial balance to find out what budget you can work with. The budget doesn’t have to be 100% accurate, just calculate it roughly.
You need to realise that you will not want to look at luxurious villas in the Maldives if your budget can only cover one room on Airbnb.
Your calculations can later help you enjoy your trip without constantly worrying about the expenses.
2. Passport permissions
Yes, even in 2023 there are some limitations which can occur in connection with
Generally speaking, if you are from a European country, you should experience very little limitations. Despite this, there are some limitations which might appear surprising even if you have a European passport, check it twice before taking flight.
The most bureaucracy usually takes place with 3rd world country passports.
Be careful with the visa. Choose the appropriate visa option for your stay, depending on the length of your stay and its purpose. It is very unpleasant to get stuck at customs upon arriving to a new country, ruining your whole trip just because of your obliviousness.
3. Think about all the costs
The biggest mistake you can make is to look just at the cost of transport and accommodation. Yes, these are the figures which are the easiest to find. However, they can become far from being the most important when travelling.
What are all the costs that you should calculate to prevent a disaster and financial damage from taking place? Calculate the cost of food. While eating in a restaurant can feel nice and take less effort, it can become too costly to eat every meal of the day in one. Find out how much the average menu prices are and how much do groceries cost. This will help you calculate if it’s worth it to cook your food on your own or rather eat out.
Next, you should calculate the prices of your planned experiences. Find out what the pricing is for sights and attractions in your destination.
It might sound funny at first, but a basic rule usually applies to travelling costs. The travel and tourism costs appear to be gradually lowering when going from west to east. Same goes with north to south.
4. Do research to find cheap transport
Transport can pose the most expensive piece of your budget. If you are going somewhere far, you will usually travel by plane. There are tricks you can use to find cheaper flight tickets.
When searching for tickets online, use incognito mode. This way the websites don’t have access to your cookies. Some airlines are cheaper on Tuesdays, and some flights are best to book in particular months. It can be cheaper to fly outside of school holidays. Use sites like Skyscanner or Kiwi to find cheap flight tickets.
Do not limit yourself to planes. Some destinations which are also accessible by train or bus might take a longer journey, but the costs can drastically decrease with different and even more ecological means of transport.
5. Find free experiences
It might seem as if the best sights and attractions need to be paid for. Well, that’s not always true. The best way to experience a country and its culture is to really experience it like a local. Try to find a local who will truly show you around everything that’s worth it. Pricey tours might often even appear to be scams in the end.
Many cities offer free walking or bike tours. This is an amazing way of sightseeing and making new connections with people!
Hostels are also a great choice if you are travelling alone and want to make new friends and experience new things!
6. Use your discounts
If you are a student, teacher or under 26 years of age, there is a sea of discounts waiting just for you during your travels. Attraction discounts can reach up to 50% for you! Get a student, teacher or youth card and take it with you abroad to use it for discounts.
Always ask at the cash desk about the availability of such discounts, these can save you a bag of cash when travelling!
7. Get City Tourist Cards
8. Travel Credit Cards
Travel credit cards can help you get free flights when you collect miles. These cards often come with sign-up bonuses. Same comes with airline cards. In some cases, you can even combine points from both of your cards to find cheaper flights.
These cards are very popular in the United States. If you are there, sign up for them! It is also possible to get these cards in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada.
For European citizens, the options are not so wide. There are some though. Airline cards like Norwegian Air, Aer Lingus, Lufthansa, and more are available.
9. Cheap & Free accommodation
Sites like Airbnb or Booking.com pose a great option if you want to find accommodation quickly and usually for a fair price. Surprisingly, there is even one site which allows you to find accommodation for free!
Couchsurfing is a service where people with an unoccupied bed in their home offer you accommodation. This is the more adventurous option; it is not for everyone and it does not come with such privacy as the other options do.
However, if you like meeting new people and connecting with the locals, Couchsurfing is the right option for you. The host asks for no money for your accommodation. You will ideally repay for the hospitality by cooking your host a meal or bringing them something from your home country.
10. Pack lightly
I get it, having a full suitcase of clothes to pick from can be nice and make you feel more comfortable. On the other hand, it can become very unpractical to carry around and you should maybe reconsider your packing style.
Choose luggage which will be easy to carry around. Ideally, a backpack. This will also come handy when travelling by plane since airlines can limit your luggage. Make a list to keep track of what you already packed and what you still need to pack.
11. Try volunteering
If you feel like travelling for a longer amount of time, volunteering might be interesting. Agencies which look for volunteers usually reimburse all travel, accommodation, and even food costs. You can experience different cultures while helping a good cause.
Areas that you can volunteer in include farms, work exchange, community work, school volunteering.
12. Use your skills to make money on the road
Try working freelance anytime and anywhere! Digital nomads are people who travel the world and work from anywhere. These people usually offer services in social media marketing, blog writing, video making, etc.
Use any suitable sites to promote yourself to the world. Show everyone your skillset and hope for people to notice you!
13. Get a train card
If you choose to travel by train, there are also discounts available. These so-called “Rail pass cards” can save you lots of money. If you also plan to travel by train in your final destination for some time, this is a must-do.
Train ticket prices can be 50% cheaper if you book early enough in advance. However, this usually makes you stick to a schedule booked ahead. If you want to travel in a more flexible way, get your Rail pass.
14. Use Sharing Economy tools
15. Get a job in a different country
The last and final tip is to find yourself a job in a different country. This might increase the dynamic of your life on a huge scale. Search for opportunities which are better than your current job and which will also allow you to explore a new country.
There are agencies which offer programmes for workers to work abroad. Although, it is important to realize that not all agencies are legitimate and might pose a threat in form of a scam.
Some job ideas include:
- Hotel/Hostel worker
- Cruise ship worker
- Au pair
- Ski resort worker
Since there are 15 tips presented, pick a combination of those which suit you. However, these tips can be applicable in case of short and even long trips. Try and open your mind to new opportunities, new people, and use your skills.
Try to find your comfort whenever you feel discomfort and use whatever you experience during your travels later in life.
Use every way to find refuge during your travels whenever you feel hopeless. Your social media accounts are flooded with contacts that can help you even in the most desperate moments of your travels.