The dust has finally begun to settle for everyone in the world as tourism starts to get back into the swing of things, making up for the lost time. The adventure-hungry traveler in you has been yearning to break the routine and go backpacking in an unfamiliar place. Maybe this is the time for you to do that, but one thing is holding you back. Your bank balance can’t afford you a luxurious experience, but it may be just enough to travel nonetheless. Here are some tips to help you travel with a budget while making the most of your money.
Do Your Research
This is a given, of course. But with a plethora of information available online, it might be overwhelming to start. A good starting point would be checking out backpacking blogs and guides. These usually include itineraries, transportation, lodging recommendations, tourist spots, and more. You might even come across a well-detailed one that includes costs, too. This can be useful if you’re looking for a ballpark.
Have you ever noticed how prices stack up during holidays? That’s because that’s when most people have time off from work, making time for leisure activities such as traveling. Traveling off-season means that plane tickets are a lot less expensive and destinations a lot less crowded. Although the weather might not be on your side, a new place is still worth experiencing!
Book in Advance
Speaking of expensive plane tickets, another popular trick to avoid high prices is to book in advance. Booking close to your travel dates can be a little more expensive, so safeguard a ticket without sacrificing your itinerary plan and book ahead.
Although it’s important to pack light (especially to avoid extra baggage fees), it’s important to pack smart. Pack only and everything that you need. Forgetting to pack a pair of pants or a coat means spending more than you might’ve intended to. It might be best to leave some extra room in your luggage too, especially if you plan to buy some souvenirs to bring home.
Bring Your Own Water Bottle
Staying hydrated is important, no matter where a person is. However, when traveling, that can be a challenge. You might feel a little thirsty in the middle of the night or while on a bus ride to your next destination. Although you can easily buy a bottle of water from the nearest convenience store, it’s still best to have your own. Did you know that producing a bottle of water takes around six times the amount of water that’s contained in a bottle? Having your own water bottle is not only handy and convenient, but it’s also friendly to the environment too!
Ditch Luxury Accommodations
Accommodations are one of the most costly parts of traveling. Don’t be disheartened; there are a lot of more affordable accommodations if you just know where to look for them. Consider affordable hostels, dorms, and other similar accommodations. Yes, you might have to give up a little privacy, but it will definitely help you save money. Plus, most hostels already offer free food! Besides, think of the fellow travelers you’ll get to meet along the way. They might even share tips of their own.
Avoid Tourist Traps
Many rookie travelers don’t know that accommodations and food places close to tourist spots are pricier. Do yourself a favor and be on the lookout for tourist trap warning signs as early as the itinerary forming process. This will affect your budget for the trip significantly.
Shop at Local Markets
Eating out can be costly, most especially when done all the time. Try to venture into local markets and supermarkets for a change. This way, you get a peep of the local experience. Expand your palette by trying local goods. Usually, products in season tend to be cheaper. While you’re at it, give street food a go.
Try Spots That Are Under the Radar
Taking the road less traveled by can be the best decision to make when backpacking. Talk to locals and fellow travelers about low-key tourist spots worth visiting. These hidden gems are easily the highlight of the trip. Plus, they’re almost never crowded with tourists!
Take Walking Tours
Walking tours are a more immersive way to explore a new place, especially when locals lead them. It’s a more intimate experience than being in a big crowd of tourists and sticking out like a sore thumb. Not only that, they cost little to nothing at all! Well, maybe treat your tour guide to a free meal to thank them.
The ability to travel is one of the most precious gifts anyone can give to a person. Giving this to yourself, even with budget constraints, is no different. Besides, travel is still travel. The experience and memories from your trip will be things that no one can put a price on.