How to Save Funds When Traveling the Globe


If you haven’t won the state lottery, chances are you’re unlikely to have a bottomless pit of cash to spend when planning your next around-the-world holiday. Let’s face it: we all have a budget when it comes to holidays. The last thing you want is to underestimate costs and be left red-faced while you’re amid your travels and enjoying new experiences. That’s why we’ve compiled this article of suggestions to help you keep a lid on your travel expenses when visiting all four corners of the world. We’ve even split the article up into saving tips per continent because we’re kind like that.

Europe

If you are planning on exploring multiple countries and cities within Europe, it might be frugal to purchase an Interrail ticket and travel by train. One pass per person is valid for up to 30 European countries. They start from only £151, too, which is peanuts considering the cost of short flights between cities. There is no limit on the number of train journeys you can make per day, and you can purchase your tickets up to 11 months in advance. When you book hotel rooms, attractions or restaurants for cities throughout Europe, make sure you get rate quotes in your local currency first. That will allow you to compare whether deals and offers are worth the bother.

North America

[caption id="attachment_10323" align="alignnone" width="600"] Life on the top bunk aboard an Amtrak sleeper train[/caption] If you are prepared to save money traveling in the U.S. in any way possible, consider booking night trains and buses. Amtrak offers an excellent choice of overnight sleeper trains that are far cheaper than boarding flights. They operate holiday packages, including east-coast-to-west-coast trips, from New York to Chicago to San Francisco. You’ll spend most of your nights aboard the Amtrak, but some nights will also include hotel accommodations. Speaking of hotel accommodations: if you plan to visit America’s entertainment capital of Las Vegas, one of the oldest ruses in the book when staying in Sin City is to try the $20 front desk trick. Slip the front desk clerk a $20 bill with your credit card upon check-in, and you may well have your hotel room upgraded by tipping extra $20.

South America

Latin America offers a plethora of rich, cultural experiences, but you’ll want to ensure you have enough left in your budget to explore them once you arrive. A bus is arguably the cheapest way to travel between cities in South America. So, shop around the bus companies to compare ticket prices. There is a known chasm of difference between first and second-class fares. However, in some countries such as Chile, airfares tend to be cheaper than even buses, so don’t assume that bus travel will be your cheapest mode of transport.

Africa

Before you set off on your travels around Africa, be sure to research visa prices of the countries you plan to visit. According to Big World Small Pockets, some countries bump up their prices far higher than others. For example, Malawi’s visa fees are an eye-watering $75 per person. You can find visa fees on the websites of governments’ foreign offices easily. If you are planning on staying three or more nights in a specific city, you are also within your rights to try and haggle a discount on your stay. Most hoteliers will reward those staying for a minimum of three nights with a welcome discount that you can put toward transport or excursions.

Asia

Night trains and buses are as popular in Asia as they are in North America. Most importantly, they are an excellent value, too. However, instead of choosing a sleeper berth, which is often riddled with bed bugs, SkyScanner recommends buying a “soft seat,” which reclines and is more comfortable thanks to air-conditioned cabins. It doesn’t matter whether you look for a taxi ride on a Tuk Tuk or a car, it’s crucial to agree on a price for your journey before you begin. Doing so ensures you don’t get any pricey surprises on arrival at your destination. Some travelers that haven’t been savvy enough to do this have been stung by drivers that detour to travel or excursion shops and demand they book tours or accommodations. Don’t let transport in Asia leave a bad taste in your mouth.

Oceania

Exploring Australia is at the top of the list for most ambitious travelers. Be it biking trails, natural parks, ocean or cliffs, Australia has it all. At Lantern Apartments you can find a lot of information about the upcoming events in the beautiful Thredbo and you can plan your trip upfront. In places where lift-sharing isn’t simple Down Under, the easiest way to save money on your journeys through Australia’s biggest cities is to acquire a transport card. Melbourne operates the myki card, in Brisbane, you’ll find the TransLink card, and in Perth, you’ll find the SmartRider. All three offer discounted rides for prepaid cardholders. The Telegraph recommends inter-city coaches, especially for cost-effective trips along the eastern seaboard. Meanwhile, those thinking of an old-school road trip can pick up a camper for only £18 a day. Who said traveling the world had to break the bank? Even if you only adopt a few of the suggestions above, we’re confident you’ll save funds to put to good use elsewhere on your travels. Keep safe and have plenty of frugal fun! Photo credits which require attribution: Upper Bunk by David McCormack is licensed by CC2.0

Jeff Campbell

Jeff Campbell is a husband, father, martial artist, budget-master, Disney-addict, musician, and recovering foodie having spent over 2 decades as a leader for Whole Foods Market. Click to learn more about me

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