9 ways to save money on your next holiday

Piggy Bank on beach vacation

It may seem easier to get a travel agent to plan your holiday for you but easier is not always smarter. What is smart is to remember that their job is to sell you the package in a way that benefits them most, but if you are willing to put in just a little extra work you can end up saving yourself a fortune! You would be astounded at how many ways there are to save money! Here are a just few to mention the least. 50 budget travel tips by Moneyning and Travel Tips by Time are two great articles that offer helpful information like what is listed below.

Piggy Bank on beach vacation
Piggy Bank on beach vacation. Image from http://dailysavings.allyou.com/2015/05/21/talking-to-kids-about-vacation-costs/

1. Prep Up

If you are flying, Plan in advance and visit discount websites to see if there are better deals. While these sites might charge you a service fee, they can easily combine flight segments from different airlines easily to give you a great deal. Also make use of google, and search the cheapest routes to get to where you are going. If you are going on a road trip make sure your car is fully serviced and that all the equipment and/or luggage you will need is in good condition. Apart from the tools of your oncoming wanderlust, take time to study maps of new places and download one or two apps that can be accessed offline for the same purpose; one such example would be Google Maps.

2. Prioritize

It’s easy to get so excited with the oncoming travel adventure that you lose focus on what is most important on this trip. If you have millions of random ideas floating around in your head there will be a high likelihood of spending a lot of money yet not being able to experience the best that the country or city has to offer. Write down a list in order of most important to least important. That way you will be able to know beforehand how much you are going to spend while enjoying the very best of your holiday.

3. Research your Planned Adventures

One of the best things about the digital shift is the ability to get possibly anything with just the push of a button. Thoroughly take time to study the highlights of your planned destination, if you are genuinely excited about the trip researching won’t be a mundane task, but instead quite enjoyable to say the least. It will increase your excitement to learn about the people, places, food, and culture, not to mention the best local’s spots to get the best deals on food, accommodation, and souvenirs. If you are already settled on the destination, go through guest reviews on such platforms such as Trip Advisor and Trust Pilot and this website, Potentash also has very many great travel articles on different destinations you may be interested in.

4. Accommodation

One of the coolest things that is becoming is growing and becoming more common, especially in the West and Europe is that you can find so many places to stay either for free or at ridiculously low prices, which is why one of my dreams to do a backpacking tour around Africa, Europe, and Asia. There are opportunities like couch surfing which lets you stay with locals who are usually ex-travelers themselves and who are willing to open up their homes to like-minded thinkers. You can stay in a hostel which is not half as bad as most people make it out to seem.

Another option could be an apartment rental. When we went to coast about five years ago, we stayed in apartment that were literally right by the beach, but were definitely more affordable than a pricey hotel. You could also stay in the town next door. Sometimes the smaller towns close to where you are going have hotels that are much less expensive. If you don’t mind the 15 minute ride, you might just save that bundle. Finding cheap accommodation is a website that gives these and so many other ideas.

5. Travel Light

Every traveler dreads the scale, literally. Luggage costs could make the difference between one more night stay in a new destination. If you are planning on leaving your destination to arrive back home with a few souvenirs then the secret is to under-pack, yes you heard me right though if you quote me I will deny it. If you have already made a list of the essentials and packed them, then don’t go adding unnecessary ‘just in case’ items. Believe me you will need that space when you are stressing about some amazing item you want to take back home but don’t know whether it will affect your luggage limit! Just make sure you have space.

6. Travel Off Season

Consider this type of vacations in off-peak times (going to Mombasa in the April instead of August, or to Nakuru in December for example). Prices are low, the weather is nice, shops and restaurants are open and happy to see you, and there are few other people around. Shoulder seasons might not be the warmest or sunniest, but the prices are far better.

7. Think outside the box.

Why are the most popular destinations so expensive? Simply because everyone goes there! Heard so much about the islands of Hawaii, Maui, and New Zealand? Well, guess what, we have Zanzibar, Mauritius, and the Seychelles! Want to go see mountains and rolling hills with grass oh so green in Switzerland and Netherlands? Please check out Swaziland, and Cape Town with the beautiful, capturing of all kinds of natural beauty, and so much cheaper because it is nearer home.

8. Travel around Home

Overseas travel might be your dream vacation but there are actually many places close by that is very interesting as well. Check out those lesser known places and the local experience might very well be great.

9. Once at Your Destination …

Talk to the locals, there’s always something, a shorter route, a local and cheaper application and even locally discounted prices from stores that could save you a penny or too. Decide too if you want to drive around in a taxi, or opt for public transport which will generally be cheaper and much more interesting.

There are many ways to save money. Check out the World’s Top 50 Travel Bloggers Share Their Best Money Saving Tips.

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Shingai is an upcoming writer with a passion for words and expression through writing. She lived in Zimbabwe as a child and has traveled to over ten countries. She craves adventure and hopes to be an inspirational writer. She is currently pursuing a degree in English Literature with a minor in Psychology at Daystar University.