Recently the question “How much do you need to travel?” was replaced by “How to travel abroad with no money?” Adventure seekers from all over the world learned to use web technologies to their advantage, making international travel cheap a completely real and trendy.
It turns out that traveling isn’t that expensive if you know vacation budget tips from insiders. You can save literally on everything: flights, stays, food, public transport, etc. If traveling is your main priority and you can survive without going to expensive restaurants abroad, this article is for you.
How can I fly cheap?
The best strategy is to start planning your trip with buying a ticket, not choosing a country. All the airlines offer discounts and run promos. If you are lucky, you can get a ticket in Europe for 10 EUR or a ticket in Asia for 1 EUR.
Flights for international and intercontinental flights are higher, but you still can catch a hot deal and book a return ticket to LA for 250 USD. If you see a ticket and realize it is the lowest possible price, don’t waste time for doubts.
- Don’t look for tickets on particular dates, use a window.
- Use kiwi.com to compare ticket prices or use the “Anywhere” feature.
- Book in advance; as a rule, tickets are cheaper when booked early.
- Browse the prices in private mode, especially if you don’t plan to book immediately.
- Don’t track the direction you are interested in by subscribing to prices.
- Monitor prices incognito if you want to get to a specific place.
- Subscribe to pages of airlines in social media to learn about promos.
- Try to travel off-season and avoid holiday flights (Christmas, New Year, etc.).
What is the cheapest hotel booking site?
While Booking.com is the most famous, HotelsCombined probably shows the widest diversity of hotels, hostels, apartments, and all other types of property. You can filter the results to view the cheapest first and find the perfect balance of price and quality.
Airbnb also offers some good deals and discounts as well. Here you can find apartments, houses, rooms or beds in shared rooms for rent. Sometimes hostels are featured as well, but rarely. This is the best option if you go with a company, three friends or more.
There is also an opportunity to stay in a foreign country for free – Couchsurfing. Register on the website, find a host and send a request for a stay. Just remember the main Couchsurfing rule: teach, learn, share. It is not about your economy, but communication with people.
How to spend less on transport?
Transport is not flights only. If you have time to visit several countries, choose the ones situated on the same continent and combine different kinds of transport: plane, bus, train, boat, car sharing or hitchhiking. Buses and planes are usually the cheapest, taking into account the fact that hitchhiking is a rather rare thing.
If you are staying in a city for at least a week, you can consider buying a travel pass. 24- and 48-hour tickets can also save you some money. If you like walking and don’t mind to walk 20+ km daily, there is no need to buy tickets at all.
How to spend less on food?
- Pack some snacks before you go, they are overpriced at airports.
- Go to local supermarkets and markets.
- If you live in a place with a kitchen, cook meals instead of buying ready ones.
- Check out popular street foods instead of expensive restaurants.
- Find out what places locals like to visit, meals shouldn’t be overpriced there.
- Try to avoid popular tourist routes, prices get lower as you leave downtown.
- Check out business lunch and other promo offers.
- Find out if restaurants sell foods with 50% in the evening.
What about entertainment on a budget?
How to travel with low budget without making it boring or missing all the fun? The first thing is to communicate with people – both locals and other tourists. If you stay in a hostel, that won’t be problematic at all. Besides, hostels often throw parties, free dinners, tours, etc.
You can always grab a city map for free in a tourist center. As you do it, ask about free days in popular museums or other free events. Find out the schedule of free walking tours. Technically, you still pay for a tour, but as much as you can and only if you want to.
If you are serious about the local culture, buy a city pass for 24, 48, or 72 hours. In some cities (for example Berlin), you’ll get discounts for all highlights, while other countries grant a free pass to dozens of places (Netherlands and Denmark, in particular).
Is there anything else should I know?
Learn how to pack your things well. Usually, low-cost airlines allow taking only a backpack, while a suitcase or a big bag comes for an extra fee. If it is possible, bring only the essentials with you. Of course, if you are leaving for Europe at least for a month, it will be impossible.
If you ask “How do I make travel cheaper?”, you shouldn’t expect luxurious hotels and Michelin restaurants. Visiting other cities and countries, however, is worth it without all-inclusive vouchers. In some way, it is much better: you discover real life, not a commercial by a travel agency.