Tips On Saving Money While Travelling + Giveaway!

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

As you all know, I have recently returned home from two months in Asia. The most asked question while I travel is always “how can you afford to go for so long/so often”. Yes, the most important part is to save up before you go, but how to make it last longer? In this article, I’ll be taking you through the easy methods of saving money while travelling.

THE BIG THREE


Cook your own food

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

I know trying the different flavours of each culture is important, but if you are not travelling just for food and are like me who doesn’t like curry when travelling in India or are getting diarrhoea from everything you eat on the street, it might be a good idea to cook something yourself. Leave the weird western foods alone along with curry burgers and burritos and get into some good old cooking. Try renting a room with a shared kitchen or maybe even a whole apartment while buying cheap and fresh ingredients from the market. Of course if you are in Asia and not afraid to eat street food, then nothing will beat the prices of $0.20-1.00 meals. However, if you are in Europe, Australia or anywhere else with respectable hygienic food standards, then you are guaranteed to save a lot of money by not eating out every time.

Save on accommodation

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

It’s always wise to shop around before booking. As many there are websites, there will be different prices for the same room. Always make a point of cross checking your room prices before booking. It’s also worth looking into which websites offer discounts, priority check-ins and insider deals. I was able to get discounted rates on all my future accommodation bookings even after just three bookings with these kinds of loyalty programs. If you are stretching your money out as far as possible, you could consider staying cheap in hostels, home-stays or maybe even Couchsurfing. Some go as far as sleeping in train stations (true story from India!) and airports (guilty) to save the dime. Many hotels and hostels offer breakfast or even dinner (Reagge Mansion in Kuala Lumpur) included in your room rate.

Saving on transport

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

Cheap flights vs overland public transport-it all depends on how much time you have, what’s your budget and how you like to travel. Airfares are considered the most expensive mode of travel compared to a bus/train or a boat journey, but even that can save you money. I am not even going to get into the cheap flight deals or frequent flyer miles, but would like to rather make you think differently on flying in general. We all know flying saves time, but what we don’t think about is how much money we will not spend if we have a shorter journey. For example, a flight from New Delhi to Kerala could cost you $100, while going overland will cost you more if you count in the trains, accommodation, food, entertainment and the like. When flying, read the fine print, make sure your luggage doesn’t weigh too much and is included in the fare in the first place.

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

If skipping destinations by flying is not your cup of tea, then taking a local bus instead of a tourist bus in Asia or booking a lower class train journey, even though very adventurous, can also save you a lot of money-especially when travelling in India. For example, second class tickets would cost around $40 for a long distance train, where a sleeper class with no A/C would go for the price of peanuts. Taking the local buses in Sri Lanka instead of a tuktuk will save you a small fortune. $0.60 for a two hour bus ride vs $4 to drive four minutes up the hill?

If you have the skills, knowledge and courage, renting a scooter can be a great way of saving money while getting around locally. Not wanting to pay another $55 for a half a day tour in Bali, we instead rented a scooter for two days for $12. One should proceed this with caution and be prepared for stiff asses if sharing a ride. Ouch!


LITTLE THINGS ADD UP


Buying water

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

When hiking to Everest Base Camp in April, we had heard that the higher in altitude we go, the more it costs to buy a bottle of water. So we did what any responsible environmentally conscious budget traveller would do and bought water purification tablets to be able to safely drink tap water/water from the rivers and streams. A bottle of water would cost $0.15 in Kathmandu, but over $4 per litre high in the mountains-you see where I’m going with this? We bought enough tablets for hundreds and hundreds of litres of drinking water and instead of always buying bottled water when travelling in Asia; we could create less plastic rubbish and also save our precious money. 

Tip! If you are hiking to EBC, buy the tablets from Kathmandu for a few dollars instead of paying $45 in Australia. If tablets are not your thing, there are several water bottles being sold with filters, purifiers and even LED lights that all work the same. As always, it depends on your budget as tablets are the cheapest and LED light “sabers” the most expensive.

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

I do realise not everyone is going to climb to the foot of the highest mountain in the world, but tap water was not safe to drink or even safe to brush your teeth with anywhere in Asia. I can confirm that for the most part of Australia and Europe, tap water is in some cases even better or equivalent to bottled water, so let’s make an effort together to reduce the plastic waste we would be creating by buying a new bottle every time. Reusable bottles are great and many places have filtered tap water readily available on the streets. In Spain for example, it’s the law that cafes and restaurants have to provide you with free drinking water.

Get a local SIM card

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

Everybody needs WIFI these days and getting a local SIM card with pre-paid data is a money saver (and a lifesaver) when hiking in the Himalayas, when in sticky situations like needing to transfer money over from your savings account for the ATM or trying to explain your tuktuk driver where your hotel is without an offline map. And it’s of course absolutely crucial for those footy scores and unexpected selfies with monkeys you instantly want to upload. Don’t be a fool like we were in India, deciding not to buy a local SIM card only to end up with hundreds of dollars in roaming charges and being discriminated for not having a local number. You must have a local number for everything in India from ATM withdrawals, public WIFI access to booking train or bus tickets online.

Get a travel money card

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

I think this is very important if you want to save money while traveling as ATM withdrawal fees and percentages paid on card payments are not cheap! I wish someone had educated me on the various options available beforehand, but be vary when selecting your new travel card as some are just plain outright awful and won’t work 50% if the times used in the ATMs. We found ourselves out of cash more often than not and struggled every time to find an ATM that would accept our travel card. When it did work however, we saved massively on ATM withdrawal fees and when paying by card (if someone offered that luxury) there were no fees whatsoever. I am sure there are great travel money cards available; one just needs to find the right one. 

Tip! When going to Nepal, even your travel card will get slammed with minimum $10 AUD withdrawal fees while the withdrawal amount is something stupidly low. Take a lot of cash with you and exchange it as you get into the country rather than paying $10 each time for a withdrawal.

Learn to bargain

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

It’s no secret that when travelling in Asia, bargaining is a skill you must acquire and that I found mostly comes with time and practice. You don’t want to get ripped off by paying $25 AUD for a pair of cheap Chinese thongs/flipflops (khm, Michael) or $20 for two sarongs if they are half price next door. Bargaining can be a fun way of saving money while travelling in Asia once you get the hang of it. The common rule is to at least halve the asking price and then meet in the middle. Sometimes it still might be too expensive, other time the starting price is already so cheap that bargaining for it feels like a crime. If the seller doesn’t accept your price, then just start walking away as most of the times they will run after you agreeing to the price you offered. If not, you are probably better off going to the next shop and trying again. I found the asking prices in Bali to be most overpriced and with no previous experience bartering, very overwhelming. Getting ripped off our first few times made us into ruthless bargaining experts without even blinking an eye. The asking prices in India were the lowest and many times I didn’t even bargain as it was already so cheap. Keep in mind not to go overboard and unfair when bartering, sometimes it’s only a dollar difference. However, if you feel like you are getting ripped off, just walk away, there are plenty of shops and market stalls to choose from.

Be aware of touts/scammers

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

For the most part, wherever you travel, there are always people up to make an easy buck on unsuspecting travellers. Would it be the follow the ball under the cup in Rome, people pretending to be handicapped, people grabbing your hands predicting your future-for a fee of course or ….…. insert any scam here that you have heard of. It gets even worse in India where official looking people try to tell you your train has been cancelled, the ticket office closed, flooded, burnt down or even worse-just to get you to go to their ticket counters where they will happily sell you a new ticket with an inflated price of course. If you are on a budget, you have to be even more careful as you are more vulnerable and perhaps attracted to elaborate schemes promised to save you money.


Buy travel insurance

Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

I have been travelling for the last seven years and every time with the exception of my latest venture into Asia without travel insurance. I couldn’t justify paying all this money for something I could instead use to spend on the road, but what if something went terribly wrong? I have been very lucky so far, but hear the constant cries of other travellers Gofundme pages begging for money for medical costs as they got in trouble while travelling without travel insurance. You don’t want to be one of those people, don’t you? Sure, you are paying a lot of money for something you can’t physically hold, see, eat or experience, but it really is worth the peace of mind that if something should happen, you will be looked after while saving you money in the long run.


There are so many more ways to save money while you travel, and as a bonus for reading through this long ass article, I want to reward you! I have teamed up with Webjet for this post and they want to help you kick start your new adventure with a $150 gift card. You can spend the money on their website on discounted flights to Bali, around Australia or anywhere else in the world you might want to go; you can use it to finally pay for that travel insurance you are always too tight to buy or treat yourself to a nice hotel in Bali. They also have offers on cruises, package deals, on car hires and you can even rent a motor home for that ultimate Aussie camping trip!

To enter the draw, go and like my Facebook and Instagram page, share the pinned post on my Facebook profile with your friends and write me a comment here or on Facebook stating what would you spend the prize money on! I’ll be drawing the lucky winner in two weeks from now!


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Have you always wondered how to travel longer and how to stretch out your savings? You are a budget traveller? You have come to the right place!

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