How I Afford to Travel
International travel is definitely a luxury, but it can be more affordable than you might think. Here are my tips and tricks that make it possible for me to go exploring overseas.
The flight is by far the greatest expense. I always make my travel plans around the most affordable flight. I never pay more than $1,000 to fly to Europe. If you can’t find a flight within your budget on the internet, don’t be afraid to call the airline to get help finding a flight. This hack saved me $400 on my last flight to Spain!
Skip the Bougie Accommodations
I rarely pay more than $60 a night for accommodations in Europe. In my earlier days of travel, I booked hostels for $30 a night or so. Now that my husband and I travel together, we usually find an airbnb (sign up through this link for $40 in travel credit) to stay at that keeps us in our $60/night budget.
Low Key Dining
You save so much money on food by eating street food and at cafes. And definitely avoid restaurants in the most heavily touristed areas. In Paris by simply crossing from Ile de le cite (where Notre Dame is) to the right bank, we saw the price of a meal at a cafe go from 35 to 12. Plus food in highly touristed areas is usually not good because the restaurants are not expecting repeat customers leaving quality low priority. In other words, eat where the locals eat.
Walk & Take Trains
This is the easiest way to save. Cabs are so expensive and walking is free. When distances are further, take the train. It can be difficult to find parking in major cities so renting a car doesn’t make much sense unless you are going to be driving around the country side.
Have the Right Cards
Make sure you have a credit card that does not have fees for international purchases. The last thing you want to do is pay a fee for every purchase you make. Banking somewhere that doesn’t charge for ATM use is really helpful. My bank actually reimburses the fees from ATM charges. In most other countries you will be paying in cash so you’ll be using an ATM a lot during your travels. Carrying around large sums of money is not a safe (anywhere) so not having that fee with each transaction will save you a ton of money.
Do you travel abroad? What are your tips and tricks? If you don’t, what holds you back? I’d love to hear more in the comments.