I remember the hit song “Around the world in 8 dollars” from the Raj Kapoor’s year 1967 movie “Around the world”. I don’t know if it was possible even in that time but now you can’t even cross your city in 8 dollars.
Everyone love to travel around the world. But travelling comes at a cost.
Many of us travel to different places & spend a lot of money on travelling. But you know that you could save a lot of money on travelling.
Every year you take vacations and you are off to some destination like Goa, Shimla, Thailand, Singapore etc. If you are smart enough then you can save thousands of rupees each year on travelling expenses.
There are number of ways you can save money on travelling. You can save money on buying flight tickets, booking hotels, food, shopping etc.
Save Money on Travelling
This month I am going to Thailand for a week. And because I have not hired any travel agency, I have got so much experience in saving money in different areas.
In this article, I am going to share some of the practical tips on saving money on travelling.
We waste tons of money buying airline tickets. If you are smart enough then you could save a lot of money on airfares. Here are some of the things you need to keep in mind while purchasing a ticket.
1. Plan in Advance
First is always plan in advance and see all the websites where they are giving discounts on airline tickets.
Many of the airlines provide huge discount if you book the tickets 3 months to 12 months in advance specially if you are planning for a foreign trip.
But if you don’t have that much time and plan to travel in next 1-2 months only then you may find the ticket rates a bit high.
So don’t worry in that case. There are 2 things you can do-
- Find out coupons, if you search on the Internet then you will get number of sites which provides coupon codes for flights & other products.
- Every 2-3 weeks, you will find the promotional discount rates on all the major airlines. Subscribe by email or mobile to some of the top airlines like Indigo, Jet Airways etc. and wait for their offer. You will get the email or SMS alert as soon as they lower the prices.
Recently I was planning to visit to Bangalore for the first week of August 2014. Before 2oth June the ticket prices were Rs. 3500+ on all the sites.
I waited for the offer and just 10 days back I received the promotional alert from GoIndigo for the low price offer. I got the ticket for Rs. 2600/-.
This was I save around Rs. 3600/- on 2 return tickets from Mumbai to Bangalore.
2. Fewer Luggage
Second is your luggage. I always advise you to travel with fewer luggage. Now airlines are charging for everything you have extra. Golden rule is one bag one person.
There are no luggage charges for hand bags so its a good to shift heavy stuffs like laptop in the hand bag.
3. Round Trips
Round trip tickets are the great way to save money on tickets. One way tickets are so expensive however a round trip ticket is very cheap.
4. Use Same Airport
Use the same airport for flying in and out. It is always cheaper because you save a lot of money on car rentals. You know the route and price they are going to charge.
5. Change Flights
Travel in two countries at one time and you save money on tickets. If you want to stay in two countries and airline wants you to change the planes then it is good for you. You can stay in the country without paying anything extra.
So these were some of the tips for saving money on airline tickets.
Hotels for Accommodation
After tickets and transportation you spend most of the money on hotels. In fact, accommodation is most important part of travelling. Here you could save huge amount of money every year if you book right hotels.
So here are few tips when you book hotels
1. Search for Hotels
First thing you have to do is research. Go online search every single hotel in the country or city you’re going. Now a days you can get good hotels at low cost. However, you have to search and stay in touch.
One of the best site for research is Booking.com. You can use the search option to find everything that you are looking for. There are number of filter options like budget, type of hotels, facilities provided and many other to do your research.
You can check the ratings & reviews provided by other users.
2. Do the Research on Price
As you are here to save the money, so after making a list of favourite hotels, you need to research on the price. There are number of ways you can do that-
- Visit the website of the hotel and check if the prices are lower than the price you find on Booking.com or other hotel booking sites.
- If you find the same price, you can contact the hotel by email or phone for the better deal.
- You can check the discount coupons online.
One of the important tip that can work for you is book the hotel in short duration if this is not the peak time in the city you are travelling to.
I was checking one of the hotel “Kirikayan Luxury Pool Villas” in Koh Sumai (Thailand). When I check the price of this hotel in Booking.com for 24th July 2014, its more than Rs. 8000/- but when I check the price for 7th July, the price is less than Rs. 6000/-.
It means there are number of rooms which are not booked and because there are only 3-4 days left for this date, the hotel is offering lower price (something is better than nothing for hotel) for the same room & with the same facilities.
2. Book Hotels in Nearby Town
If you are visiting cities then you could stay at nearby small town because it is cheaper. In a city, hotels could be very costly but if you book a motel in a town near to it then you save money.
I have checked one of the best 5 star hotel in Bangkok which is around 25 KMs away from the main city is much cheaper than other 5 star hotels with the same facility but in the main city.
3. Suites Better than Rooms
Two bedroom suites are better than booking two rooms. You will get the privacy and it will be a lot cheaper. Its a better idea if there are 2 families.
4. Vacation Homes
If you are staying for a long period then I would recommend vacation homes rather hotels. They are very comfy and cheap also compared to hotels in cities.
5. Friends or Family
If you have a friend or family member living in the city you travelling to then stay with them, if you can. No hotels, no vacation homes, just free.
Next big thing where travellers spend their most of money is car rentals.
1. Choose Car Rentals Carefully – You have to be very specific about car rentals. One way is car rentals, when pick up and drop off venues are not same then the rate is double of standard rentals. If you need a car rental for 10 days and you will be in one city for 7 days and another city for 3 days then book two different cars, don’t book same car because you can save few thousand rupees.
2. Size of the Car – Use smaller cars because you don’t have to pay for extra fuel that a big car needs.
3. Fill the Rented Car – Fill up your car with cheap gas. Hence, don’t use services that fill gas tank for you because they can charge you extra money. Although they advertise it is cheaper but they charge more money.
4. Car Rental Insurance – Insurance and credit card companies cover for your expenses. Just pay all your bills using credit cards. So make best use of this service and you save some money.
5. Search for Coupons – Car rental companies gives discount on coupon codes. You have to visit their website and search for that offer. Here you could save some money.
So these were few simple and easy steps you can take and save huge amount of money on car rentals.
You need to travel long distance inside the country or the city. Here you got to be smart enough to save some money.
1. Use Public Transportation and Avoid Taxis – The first thing you can do is to use public transportation like subway, railroads and buses. They are very cheaper. Do not use taxis and other private vehicles because they charge you a lot of money.
2. Metros and Subways – They are the best because you get monthly pass which is very cheap.
3. Night Trains and Slower Transportation – Night travel cost you less. You can also use slower transportation like bus because they take time but fair is very less.
4. Drive Yourself – You can drive your own car and avoid spending extra money.
Food and Beverages
After saving money on hotels you can save a lot of money on eating and other food items. Here are some tips
1. Cook Yourself – If you can cook on your own then go for it. Bring all the ingredients and cook by yourself and you save a lot of money. Many regular travellers do that.
2. Ask Locally – No one can tell you better about the best affordable foods than the local people of that location. Ask & take the opinion of different people while eating the best foods at affordable price.
3. Plan Your Meals – You should always plan your meal in advance. You have to find out every single restaurant that has great food at the same time you pay less. If you find street food is better than restaurant then go for it you might save some money.
4. Brunch and Dinner – I suggest you to skip breakfast and combine it with lunch. This way you save a lot of money because you eat only two times a day.
5. Avoid 5 Stars Hotels – You could avoid eating at a five star hotels because food is very costly.
These simple things can save you a lot of money.
If you are travelling then you have to shop something. And here you tend to spend a lot. Hence you have to be extra careful and spend wisely.
1. Duty Free Shops– Look out for duty free shops in the airports. Many Airports have duty free shops where you can shop. However, you have to pay taxes.
2. Tax Refunds on Products – If you are planning to go on a shopping spree then you should apply for tax refund. You have to fill out forms and show proof if you have made large purchases. Some countries allow you to get something back on your taxes.
So these were few tips for shopping aboard.
1. Currency – Choose a currency according to the country you are visiting. Because exchange rates are different for different countries.
2. Cash – Exchange centers have very high rates and avoid going there. Instead you can you can go to places to get cash in the local currency and that is the best option.
So these were some points that you need to keep in mind if you want to save money on travelling. You can do a lot more things to save money.
Like always talk to locals, travel in group, find membership discount, reward points, mini tours, local deals etc.
Do you have any tips that can save money while travelling. Share your experience through the comment section.