Start a Travel Budget Today with These Tips
There can be no doubt that the COVID-19 pandemic has been one of the most impactful events of our generation. Suddenly, so many aspects of our lives ground to halt. The arrival of the coronavirus forced us all to change how we shopped, went to work, spent time with our friends, and how (or even if) we traveled.
While those initial days of the global pandemic were quite dark and scary for many of us, thankfully, there seems to be some light at the end of the tunnel. The increasingly widespread availability of testing and the plethora of vaccines that have been released have allowed us to return to some semblance of normalcy. For those of us who thirst for more adventure and seek out new experiences, these have been a godsend, and in many cases, will allow us to return to our most beloved pastime: travel.
If you’ve been looking for some tips on how to prepare for your next grand adventure, then you’ve come to the right place on the internet. Get ready for the next big ticket clearance sale and prepare your travel budget with the following tips. This article will help you keep the cost of your travel down, while also providing you with advice on how to keep expenses low while actually enjoying what your destination has to offer.
Preparing for Your Trip
There are a number of ways you can keep costs down even before you’ve left your country of origin. Here are some of them.
- Consider how you’ll get to your destination
Your mode of transportation will naturally be one of your most important considerations when making travel plans. Can you drive to your destination, or will you have to fly there? Are there other options to get there, such as by train or boat? Deciding on which mode of transport you’ll be using can change your budget dramatically. You’ll also need to consider the relative quality of your preferred mode of transportation. Flying first class, for example, is often very expensive, and may easily cause your entire travel budget to double or triple depending on where you’re going.
- What will your accommodation be like?
As with travel, your accommodations may vary greatly depending on your personal preferences and tastes. Are you in the mood for roughing it and living out of a backpack for a month? Pension houses and hostels are great options for travelers on a budget, but don’t expect much in the way of creature comforts or privacy. Would you like to sample life at a five-star hotel? Be prepared to feel spoiled and pampered to your heart’s content, but of course, all that pampering comes with a cost.
Once You’ve Arrived at Your Destination
When you’ve finally made your trip and you’re at your destination, there are some things you’ll have to set aside cash for as well, such as the following:
- Think about what (and where) you’ll be eating
Part of the fun of travel is trying new foods and sampling new flavors. Going to a new country would not be much fun if all you eat is fast food from a global chain. However, be smart about your food expenses while on your trip: it may be tempting to keep hopping from one fine restaurant to another every night, but that’s a sure way to inflate your spending. If you’re unsure about how much you’re likely to spend, there are many websites that will help you set your expectations for your expenses on food, while also allowing you to sample some of the local fare.
- Consider what you’ll be doing at your destination
Your trip wouldn’t be much fun if all you did was sit in your room all day, so find out what activities are available to you at your chosen destination. Tours of popular or historically important places will often cost money, but give travelers a sense of security and safety that they may not have when exploring an unfamiliar locale on their own. Does your destination of choice have special attractions like theme parks or other entertainment? You’ll have to build these into your budget too, if you want to go to them.
- What are you going to shop for?
No trip would be complete without souvenirs and gifts for friends, so be sure to set aside some pocket money for shopping. Consider where you’ll be shopping, when you decide on your shopping budget. Will you be going to huge malls and brand-name stores, or does your destination have budget shopping options like bazaars or public markets? Choosing which one to go to can change your budget dramatically.
Luckily, there are a lot of websites these days that will help you with estimates for each of these items, so you can prepare an overall travel budget ahead of time.
One last tip before you head off, though: be sure to leave yourself some room to wiggle as far as your travel budget goes. You’ll inevitably come across something you couldn’t have accounted for ahead of time, whether it’s the possibility of an unforgettable meal or a long sought-after item that’s a wee bit too expensive. Leaving yourself some allowance for purchases you couldn’t have prepared for in advance will prevent you from feeling the disappointment of having to forego these experiences during your trip.