Traveling is expensive. But that shouldn’t stop you. Here are five tips on keeping your travel costs cheap.
- Make Your Own Breakfast – This is a great trip to save any easy $20 a day. While I was visiting my friend Brittany in Oregon (read about it here), I was a solid hour away from the city center by public transportation. As I am someone that wakes up hungry, there was no way I could wait that long for breakfast. I instead hit up the nearest Fred Meyer’s (great last name – and no, there is not family connection) grocery store and purchased a box of instant oatmeal packets. My favorite is BetterOat’s Oat Fit in Apples and Cinnamon. Each morning I would prepare myself two packets – just add hot water and you are good to go! Added bonus: oatmeal is super hearty, so it kept my insatiable hunger at bay for a few hours! If you are staying in a hotel, you can call down for hot water or use a coffee maker to heat some up. You will have plenty of opportunities to eat out while traveling, so skipping just one meal out a day shouldn’t make a huge difference on your experience, but it will greatly impact your wallet!
- Skip the Hotel – Hotels are easily the most expensive part about traveling. Kind of crazy considering the goal is to be out of the hotel and instead exploring the city. Cut down costs on lodging my staying with friends, family, or friends of a friend if possible. If you don’t know anyone in the area, check out AirBnB for a cheap alternative to a hotel (rent out a couch, room, or the entire house) or Couchsurfing for a free place to crash at the end of a long day of sightseeing. I have had nothing but positive experiences with AirBnB before, and I will be trying Couchsurfing for the first time in May when I go to Alaska! Review to come.
- Book the Inexpensive Flight – yes, being at LAX at 4am does suck, but if you can save $100, why not? You don’t even have to save it in fact! Maybe invest that $100 into a great dinner at one of New York’s top restaurants or a fun excursion. 50 years from now, you will more remember the fact that you saw a Broadway play rather than the early flight. Added bonus: you might get to see the sunrise as you take off.
- Pack Light – Many airlines (like Delta, but not Southwest!) charge you to check a bag. #rude. Save yourself $25 each flight and fit everything you need into a carry on! You might be wearing your parka, heaviest pair of boots, and five shirts on the plane, but it is a good way to cut down on useless spending.
- Take Public Transportation – If you buy a one-day or week-long unlimited pass, you can really get some good value for money. Hop-on, hop-off all day long as you tour the city. It might not be as fast as calling for an Uber, but it will be a lot cheaper. Added bonus: it is a great chance to meet some locals or get a better lay of the land! Be sure to grab a window seat, and download any city public transportation apps ahead of time!
Alright, 5 easy ways to save some cash while traveling! While nothing groundbreaking, it is a sure fire way to cut down on expenses that can really add up. Now that you can travel a little more inexpensively, take the plunge and book a trip!
What tips do you have to save money while traveling? Let us know below.