By Mohammed Mirza
Who doesn’t love to travel? However, at the end of the day it is our budget which dictates the place we travel to, how long and where we stay.
So even if you don’t have the travel budget, don’t worry as here are a few tips that will allow you travel without burning a hole in your pocket.
Consider the fact that you will be shopping while you travel, meaning that you’ll be adding a few more kilos of luggage with you on your way back – you may even have to pay for excess baggage. If you take lighter luggage, chances are that you can fly for much cheaper with low-cost airlines where ticket charges are directly proportional to the total baggage weight. So, travel light and come back light.
Round trip tickets can be up to 35% cheaper than 2 separate one-way tickets. Ditch the travel agents and look for the best airfares on flight aggregator websites. If you are confident that you won’t be changing your flight dates then you can opt for non-refundable tickets, which come even cheaper. Book in advance, during the weekdays preferably.
Claim Tax Refunds
Some countries have a Tourist Refund Scheme (TRS), in which you can get a refund on some of the taxes that were levied on your retail purchases. In order to claim the refund you have to visit the special allotted counter for TRS at the airport.
There are many websites like coachsurfing.com and servas.com where travelers can connect with locals who can help in getting accommodation for free or at a deep discount. All you have to do is register and connect with the locals living there.
And if hospitality exchange is not your thing you can go for apartment rentals, which are much cheaper than hotels. If for visa purposes you had to book a hotel, then stay at the hotel for a night and look for other hotels or apartment rentals by yourself afterwards.
Use Public Transport
Never use taxis. Get a metro or bus pass and travel as much as you like with it. You can use local alternatives to taxis if available, like tuk-tuk’s for example – they’re cheaper and much more fun. Also, choose a centrally located accommodation, this way you will save on commuting expenses.
Go Off Season
From hotels to airfare, almost everything related to tourists is cheaper. An additional bonus of going off-season would be that popular tourist sites will have lesser crowds any you’ll have more chances of getting an upgrade.
Make Your Own Travel Itinerary
Ditch the tour group operated tours, which obviously contain many places that are of no interest to you whatsoever and make one of your own. It will be much cheaper this way and you can decide on how much time to spend at a site.
Be a Local
Eat like a local, travel like a local and spend like a local. For those with shoestring budgets you need not eat a fancy French restaurant if you are somewhere in Asia or shop at an Italian luxury brand if you have local cheaper counterparts offering similar items. For shopping never shop at tourist markets, go to places where tourists come in lesser number – chances are you will get the exact same product for much lesser prices.
Make Lunch Your Main Meal
Dinners are always pricier than lunch, so have a hearty local lunch. Some restaurants even have amazing lunch offers, so aim for that. For dinner you can either eat at a local eatery or you can get those ready-made packaged food from the grocery store, put it in the microwave and you are good to go. For breakfast and other meals during the day head to the local bakeries.