While travelling overseas is almost always thrilling and inspiring, returning to an empty wallet is not quite as exciting.
Here are a few tips on how to make the most of your time away while not breaking the bank. A personal travel manager can tailor your trip specifically to your budget.
Book well in advance
Ensuring your flights and hotels are booked at least two months before your trip will allow you to get far cheaper rates than at the last minute. Some hotels may even offer a discount for bookings made well in advance.
Go ‘Off Season’
Heading overseas during your destination’s low season can save you hundreds of dollars. Travelling during these few months of the year will not only save you money on flights and food in tourist areas, but you’ll also escape the crowds.
Serviced apartment versus hotel
It may be in your hip pocket’s best interest to book into a serviced apartment versus a hotel room. This way, if you’re staying for a week or so, you can do a spot of grocery shopping and make your own meals in the kitchenette, just as you would at home. This is also a great strategy if you’re watching your waistline, as you won’t be tempted by overindulging in restaurants.
Find Free Entertainment
In most countries there will often be free entertainment around the city – you just need to know where to look. Ask your hotel concierge if there are any free gigs or comedy nights around the area. Many hotels will have a ‘what’s on’ magazine in their rooms or lobby, which would have free listings. Also, many museums and galleries will hold one night a week free – like MOMA in NYC.
Walk or take public transport instead of taxis
Not only does ditching a cab fare save you a bundle of cash, but walking around your new allows you to experience more and stop to take photos. There are also added health benefits for walking a few kilometres each day.
Enjoy local cafes
Instead of eating at the restaurant in your hotel each day, why not venture out and find a local café? Eating locally will generally save you money on all meals of the day instead of an overpriced meal within the hotel. Local restaurants also offer added cultural insights and allow you to mingle with the regulars.
Take a travel card
Consider leaving the credit card at home and take a travel card instead. These allow you to deposit money in the selected currency, waiving international service fees and ATM charges.
There are also certain types of bank accounts that will allow you withdraw cash without a fee, so chat to your financial provider before you step on the plane.
Meet with your personal travel manager or find one near you to get the most out of your dollar on your next trip.