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How to Travel on a Small Budget?

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Exploring fascinating places doesn’t have to cost a lot of money and you obviously don’t have to break your bank to travel the world. If you’re looking forward to traveling on a small budget, we’ve got you covered. Below you’ll find some tried and tested tips to help you plan a great vacation on a budget:

Plan Well

There is no denying the fact that impulsive traveling is awesome. However, it is only possible when you have plenty of time and resources. But, if you’re following a strict budget, the most important thing is to work on a feasible plan. No, you don’t need a rigid unbending minute-by-minute itinerary, but you should have a general idea of the route that your journey will take or how long you plan to spend in each country or state. This way you could save hundreds of dollars as last-minute flights are generally pricier.

Always Travel Out of Season

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Selecting the right time also plays a crucial role especially when you’re traveling on a budget. Never travel during school vacations or festive holidays as rush during these months is usually more than the other months. Also, during special days, the cost of accommodation, transport, and food are comparatively high. Research the perfect time to visit your favored destination and you may pick the time just before or after these researched dates. Resorts and airlines cut down their prices to attract more customers during shoulder season.

Look for Alternates

The accommodation cost is certainly one of the biggest costs for those traveling on a budget. One of the ways to save lots of money on accommodation is to ditch expensive hotel suites and look for more reasonable substitutes. For instance, you can find an appropriate hostel at decent price and share a room with someone. Also, websites like AirBnB help you book a spare room in someone’s house.

Pack Smartly

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According to JanSport, while there is nothing better than traveling light especially if you’re traveling on a budget, it’s still suggested to bring everything you need in your suitcases and backpacks to avoid shopping. Keep in mind, shopping at tourist destinations is hell pricey. So, no matter where you’re heading, make sure to keep a spare pant, tee, and accessories with you.

Booking In Advance Can Save You a Lot of Money

If possible, always book a two-way flight as packages with return tickets are usually economical. Generally, airlines offer their flight seats in advance and the more you get closer to the date of departure, the costs will escalate.

Choose Your Flight Days Wisely

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Always choose your flight days wisely. For instance, midweek ticket prices are relatively lower as compared to the weekends. Thus, look for the availability of tickets on Tuesday or Wednesday. Not only, midweek days are better in terms of ticket cost but you can also avoid long queues at security and check-ins. Also, there is no need to upgrade no matter how appealing business class looks. The selection of economy flights can let you spend more money on better food and accommodation options. Economical airlines are absolutely okay if you’re traveling a short distance. These airlines also introduce great, cost-effective deals for the travelers so make sure you keep yourself updated with any recent offer the airline has introduced for its customers.

Opt for Public Transport

Instead of taking short-distance flights, opt for buses or trains. Not only these options are cost-effective but you can also enjoy great sceneries on the go. Also, an overnight train journey can save you a one-day rent/fair of your hostel or hotel.

Don’t Spend Too Much on Food

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Low-cost breakfast, lunches, snacks, and dinner can easily be bought from local supermarkets or nearby farmer’s market. Instead of overspending your cash on expensive food options and restaurants, try out local delicacies or street food. Try to check all the possible options before deciding a place to eat for yourself. Consuming beer with every meal will also add up to the cost. There is no better and healthier substitute than water, so try to stick to it as much as you can.  There are hostels that allow visitors to access their kitchen and cook their own meals. If you love cooking, just buy a few of your favorite ingredients from the supermarket and prepare a delicious meal for yourself at the best possible price.

There you have it. These simple yet extremely effective tips will help you have wonderful holidays on a budget. If possible, convert your vacations into working holidays by carrying forward your freelance work or you can also work as a skiing instructor or a language teacher if you want. The possibilities are literally endless.

What do you usually do to make your vacations budget-friendly? Feel free to share your opinion below as we’d love to hear back.


Peter is a freelance writer with more than eight years of experience covering topics in politics. He was one of the guys that were here when the foreignpolicyi.org started.

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