If you’d like to know how to stay on budget while traveling, we have some simple money-saving tips for you!
When traveling, one of the most crucial things we need to consider is our budget. That means we need to be very specific when and how we spend our cash. But if money isn’t an issue for you at all, then good for you.
However, if you are like me who counts every penny spent then you have come to the right place!
Lately, with the frequency of travels, we are having, traveling on a budget has been pretty tricky. Especially now that we we want to travel as a couple and with our daughter too. And not to mention the number of expenses we are spending at home.
When we plan for a trip, we always set a budget first to cover all our expenses for the entire duration. This means that we usually do the following beforehand:
1. Plan the itinerary. Drafting and setting your itinerary helps make you conscious of the amount of money you are going to spend.
2. Group activities per location. This is to ensure that we don’t go back once we visit a place to save money for transportation.
3. Get the best deals from hotel/ hostel booking sites.
4. Look for accommodations with free breakfasts.
5. Book accommodations and tours beforehand.
Lucky for us, there are several money-saving tips where we can travel and still save. I’m pretty sure we all have our tricks to travel on a tight budget.
Sometimes though, when we are already on the road, we tend to go a bit overboard and still spend excessively.
Below are our budget travel tips to ensure that we stay on budget while traveling.
Table of Contents
Know your itinerary.
First and foremost, you need to know your itinerary. If picking a location for your next trip, ensure that you know exactly what you want to do and the things you want to visit.
Do research beforehand and avoid being impulsive especially when deciding to include a new destination that you haven’t considered previously.
Separate your budget per day or activity.
Once you know your itinerary and have broken down the expenses you’ll be needing, you may now separate your budget per activity.
That means, listing down the transportation expenses, meal and snacks allowances (especially if you want to explore the food scene), and the guided tours you have availed and will be availing. And when you have a rough computation of how much you’ll be needed per day, you can separate the money.
This may sound tedious at first but it does help when you are on the trip and are taking out the cash.
You don’t have to put labels on it. Just put it on pre-identified places so that you won’t have a problem accessing them when the time comes.
Avoid shopping centers and markets (especially if you’re into impulse buying).
Another money-saving tip on how to stay on budget while traveling is to avoid shopping centers and souvenir stalls.
Now I know this might sound unreasonable because who doesn’t love visiting markets? I certainly do. But sometimes, we tend to overbuy stuff that we don’t need. Especially when we are at the spur of the moment.
Besides, shopping centers and souvenirs stalls are filled with an expert salesperson who in one way or another may convince you to spend a dollar or two on merchandise.
Talk to your kids beforehand.
When we bring kids along, it can be pretty tricky to stir them away from attractive stalls.
That being said, it is important to explain to them beforehand that they’ll be only getting one (or if none at all) souvenir on this particular trip. If you plan on buying them some, make sure that it’s not excessive and you can control it.
Like adults, kids can also get into the spur of the moment feeling and can coax you into buying one or two for him/ her self.
Bring only what you need.
Another tip on staying on budget while traveling is to bring only what you need. And I am talking about the cash.
If you worry about emergencies, then maybe bring an extra 10-20% of your budget. But separate them from your regular cash.
This way, you won’t mistakenly spend them. Plus it gives you the extra security just in case.
Bring the essentials that you need.
If you want to save while on the trip, bring your utilities with you. Don’t think of just ‘purchasing at the local grocery/ market’ for the things you’ll need. This could definitely lead to overspending.
If you have a regular bag of toiletries with you, that’s even better! We do have one where it is filled with soaps, shampoos, toothpaste, lotion, and all that. I regularly check it before we go on a vacation and refill it when necessary.
This saves me time from going to the grocery when I arrive at our destination, saves me the hassle, and saves me extra cash. Plus, it saves me from the temptation of buying other stuff at the grocery that I don’t really need like extra candies, chips, and all that.
Ride public transport.
Another tip to stay on budget while on travel is to ride public transport. This includes riding trains, buses, jeepneys, and tuk-tuks when available.
This not only helps you stay in budget, it also gives you a glimpse of the every day routine of locals and their culture.
Eat where locals eat.
If you want to save money while on travel, go to places where locals are commonly seen grabbing a bite. One indication is to look for the most crowded eatery you can find.
For safety and health reasons, make sure to survey the area first. After all, we should aim to eat healthy when we travel and to remain fit.
Eating like a local will give you several opportunities to try local favorites and discover off-the-radar food spots.
Most of us would love to travel as much as we can. Unfortunately, there are things that we need to consider first.
Hope this money-saving tips on staying on budget while traveling has given you ideas on keeping your expenses on check while on the road.
Do you have more money-saving tips while traveling? Share it with us by commenting below! Let us help each other out to explore more!
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Travelling on a tight budget is really a challenge. Proper planning and accounting is required to make it a success. Thanks for the tips.
You’re welcome! 🙂
Great tips! It just takes a little intentionality to stay on a budget. 🙂
Aww.. Thank you, Michelle.. Agree on that! 😉
these are so insanely helpful! I live by these when I am traveling! I also utilize my student card, a lot of museums and what not give a discounted entrance fee! So great!!
Oh! Definitely another good idea to save money! 🙂
Fantastic money saving tips. I personally love to find hotels with free breakfasts, like you mentioned early in your post :-)! I also look for Airbnb’s with reviews around hosts leaving some food ha ha. Public transport is also great :-). Thank you for sharing.
I like the tip about bringing your own toiletries. I know it has always helped me from overspending. The only problem I have is staying away from markets!
Great tips! I am on a tight budget, and I always do most of these things. I always always create a budget spreadsheet for myself and start off with everything I WANT to do, then narrow it down based on what my budget allows.
The tips are very helpful. Thank you for sharing! I often spend a little more than I should when travelling. I guess I should stay on budget if I want to visit more places in one year.