Travelling across the globe on a shoestring is a romantic notion that many wish to attempt at some point in their lives. This has undoubtedly become easier, thanks in part to the internet and the wealth of information available on travel forums and specialist websites. But while getting around and experiencing some top destinations may not be as challenging as it once was, sticking to a budget certainly can be tricky. Below are some tips to help backpackers make the most of their limited funds to enjoy some of the best places on earth without overspending.
1. Use local transport
It is easy to fall into tourist traps overseas, for the sake of convenience more than anything. Yet by going to bus stations and train stations to buy tickets backpackers on a budget will find that they save significantly. For the more intrepid traveller, try hitchhiking.
2. Beware of package tours
Guidebooks will give travelers a good idea about the best places to visit, and local tour operators will be aware of this. They will offer package tours to destinations that can often be hugely inflated in price. Try taking a bus to a nearby waterfall, or even hire a bike to get around, the savings will be enormous.
3. Be sensible with finances
Exchanging money can be a hassle, and carrying around vast quantities of cash is clearly undesirable. There are certain bank accounts and cards that will make it affordable to withdraw cash overseas, and traveller’s cheques are a safe way to carry money around.
4. Stay in hostels
Obviously hotels can be a serious drain on finances therefore finding a hostel is the best way to keep accommodation cheap. What’s more, hostels needn’t be drab depressing places. There are many boutique and quirky establishments across the world for backpackers, and failing that there is always couch surfing for the seriously frugal.
5.Travel off season
School summer holidays are an expensive time to fly. As is Christmas. Try to travel around off season instead when there are lots of offers on cheap flights. Also, accommodation will be significantly cheaper
6. Eat local food
This is something that intrepid travellers will be doing anyway, but every now and then temptations for Western food can be difficult to ignore. Pizzas and burgers will never be cheaper than local fare, and backpackers who want to keep a tight control over their finances will need to learn to stick to basic cuisine.
7. Shop around for deals
Never take the first price offered. This is true for everything from plane tickets and accommodation to souvenirs. Making the effort to look around for better prices will lead to savings that can be put towards more travel plans.
8. Be flexible
In other words, don’t stick rigidly to plans. If something is more expansive than budgets allow, look for an alternative. When on the road new opportunities will arise, therefore being open minded and prepared to change plans is crucial to save money.
9. Look for promotional codes
This is particularly true for plane tickets, and hotels. Websites often have a box for discount codes on their booking pages, and by looking for some deals online, further savings can be made.
10. Call ahead
there is a false assumption among shoppers that the best prices are to be found online. While this may generally hold true, it can be worth phoning up to see if there are any special offers on that day that haven’t been advertised online, or cancellations meaning there are spare seats or rooms available for a much cheaper price than normal.
About the Author:
Danielle Steele is a freelance writer from Flight Centre, a travel company in New Zealand that specialises in providing a range of cheap flights, holidays, hotel stays, and cruises. Check out their website to learn more about their travel packages.
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