Want to see places but not spend a fortune? While travel always includes some expenses, you can keep costs low with these tips on how to save money while traveling. Keep more in your wallet, so you can travel farther and do more.
1. Schedule Trips for the Offseason
The offseason is when people don’t go to an area as much, and the lower demand results in lower prices for everything. Secure lower rates on lodging, find deals at restaurants, and pay less for activities. This one tip could save you more than any other.
Sometimes traveling during the offseason means a lot is closed while you’re at a destination. If you want to ensure things are open, travel during the shoulder season. It’s between the peak season and offseason, when things are still open but tend to cost a bit less. You’ll still save, and you’ll be able to do almost everything.
2. Be Flexible With Your Dates
Changing your travel schedule by just a few days can sometimes lead to vastly reduced costs. Hotel rooms and flights are usually cheaper during weekdays, and you might also find lower prices at attractions.
The specific days that are cheapest can vary. You could save on major expenses if you have a flexible schedule that makes it possible to travel on these days, though.
As an added bonus, most attractions will be less crowded on the low-demand days that are cheaper.
3. Open a Travel-Friendly Bank Account
You’ll need to access money when traveling, but make sure you don’t pay to use your own money. Depending on where you go, your bank may charge ATM withdrawal fees, foreign transaction fees, and above-market exchange rates.
Find a bank account that doesn’t have foreign transaction fees and reimburses ATM withdrawals, and get a credit card that also has minimal or no foreign transaction fees. Cards with these features will likely also have competitive exchange rates.
4. Find Lodging With a Kitchen
Eating at restaurants is part of the travel experience, but having every meal out quickly becomes expensive.
Find lodging that has a kitchen or kitchenette, and you won’t have to eat out every meal. You can cook up a meal each day, before you leave or when you come back to the room. You also could heat up leftovers for a meal or snack.
This savings is especially significant if you have a family to feed, although it still makes a difference even when traveling alone.
5. Avoid Using a Vehicle
If you’re traveling to a city and are able to, leave your vehicle in the driveway at home. You’ll not only save on fuel, but you also won’t have to pay for tolls or parking. Parking in major cities can cost more than a meal.
Instead, take mass transit wherever you need to go. Most cities have a bus system, and some have a subway. You can also rent cost-efficient electric bikes or scooters in many tourist areas. All of these options are apt to be less than the cost of diving a car.