If am guessing right, travel was part of your new year’s resolutions. (Just guessing here 🙂 ) Or perhaps somewhere on your bucket list. Most of us wish we can travel more, experience different places, food, cultures and people. And for good reason. Travel changes your perspectives on life. It opens your eyes to ideas and ways of life you never thought possible. Spend a week in Rio de Janeiro or Caracas and the warm spirit and zest for life of the South Americas will probably catch up on you too!
Benefits of Travel
If food, culture and tourist attractions aren’t your thing, travel still offers numerous benefits among them:-
- Improving social skills
- Experiencing the beauty of nature
- Teaches you patience (things rarely go as planned)
- Renew your energy reserves
Or to quote someone:-
So how do you manage to fulfill your travel dreams without breaking the bank?
Nothing just happens on its own. Events are set in motion. Plan your travel well ahead of time and chances are that you can manage it without spending a fortune. Failure to plan is planning to fail. In your plans, research cheaper options for the basic necessities such as food, accommodation and transport. If you want to rock travel at an expensive destination, consider going off the normal beaten route. Instead, opt for other experiences. Cook your own food. Consider couch-surfing or staying with friends. All this requires planning well in advance and making your acquaintances earlier.
Rock Travel Off Season
The high travel seasons are well known. They are in the summer and around major holidays in the US and Europe. These are also the times when traveling can be expensive. From airfare to getting decent and affordable accommodation. The high season makes it a nightmare. How do you get around this? Make off season your high season! You have October through April to enjoy travel and amazing experiences on a shoestring budget.
During this time you can snag budget travel deals, accommodation and other offers designed to keep tourist businesses afloat during the off season.
Use A Budget Airline
Unless you can teleport from JFK Airport to Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport, you need an air ticket. This is an opportunity to cheapen out! That air ticket is a means to an end. The end being all the fun you are going to have on the other side. How do you get a cheap air ticket? Time to get creative.
- Research and choose a well known budget airline
- Book your flight very early or very late when airlines are desperate to fill vacant seats and are offering discounts
- Use your airline miles for the ticket or for an upgrade
- Avoid travel agents or tourist offices
- Ask nicely for a discount…you will be surprised at what you can get
Avoid Unnecessary Spending
Do you require that taxi to take you around your destination? No you don’t! In-fact, you are probably getting ripped off. The more “touristy” you look and act the higher the chance that prices are being inflated on you. And let’s face it. It’s not a good way to experience the local culture. What’s the use of traveling if you will be holed up at your hotel’s pool sipping mojitos?
Get off your comfort zone. Go off the beaten path. Experience the local culture, cuisine and people firsthand. It’s cheaper and fun this way and you get much more for your buck! Other expenses you can do away with include eating out. Try cooking for yourself. Consider couch-surfing or staying with a local family instead of hotels. Use the train or bike your way around.
A smile changes everything. It creates positive experiences. It opens hitherto closed doors. It changes situations and warms up people to you. It’s contagious and it even makes you look more intelligent and approachable. Smiling is a recipe to rock travel. A smile will buy you what no money can’t. Local hospitality and friendship for example. Keep smiling…its your currency to amazing experiences!
Whatever travel is for you; a lifelong goal, a resolution, item on the bucket list. You can do it. You don’t need that much money. What you need most is the boldness to make it happen and courage to go off the beaten path. Where there is a will there is a way, or you make one!
Go forth and experience.