How to travel for cheap

Let’s start by killing a stubborn but common misconception: that travel is solely for the rich. With effort, you can reap the fruits of discovering the world without having to spend $300 per day. In this article, we’ll share a few tips that will help you make the most of every quid you have in your current account.

(1) Shop around for cheap air fares

Of all travel expenses, airfare is easily the most expensive. Therefore, it makes sense to hunt for savings here first. Before we do that, a quick question: do you have a points card? If not, we strongly advise getting one, as the points you’ll earn will eventually add up to free flights, or at least heavily discounted ones.

Next, keep a trained eye on fares using a travel aggregator website. If you don’t know which one to pick, reviewing the feedback of experts (like the ones at www.hot5.com) will help you decide which one is right for you. Kayak, SkyScanner, and Expedia are all popular choices, but go with the one that makes the most sense to you.

Once you have chosen a site, wait until three and a half months before your projected departure to start tracking prices. The prime booking window is defined as being between 110 and 21 days before departure – be alert during this time, but pay special attention on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, as these days have been shown to be the cheapest times to book during the week.

(2) Stay in hostels

Don’t give us that look – hostels are no longer the grimy fleapits they used to be. Around the world in travel hot spots, there are luxury versions of this communal accommodation option – with next level bedspreads, on-site restaurants/cafes/bars, and theatre rooms, you’ll feel at home from the second you arrive.

Not feeling the dorms? Completely understandable – these hostels come with private rooms that blow budget hotel rooms out of the water. You get all the privacy you deserve and expect, but with all the communal amenities of a hostel just outside your door.

Despite all this, you’ll pay markedly less than if you stayed in a hotel the entire time. Give hosteling a try on your next holiday – we’re confident you’ll have an amazing experience.   

(3) Take advantage of tourist cards

The biggest, brightest cities on the world stage brim with attractions. However, their stature means that said attractions don’t come cheap. If you plan on hitting a lot of museums, cathedrals, and art galleries on your next city break, do look into getting a tourist discount card.

Issued by many tourism boards around the globe, they offer admission to a broad collection of attractions for one all-inclusive price. For instance, the New York CityPASS offers access to six attractions for just over £100 – not bad for one of the priciest cities on the planet.   

(4) Get a travel job

Plan on being on the road for a while? There’s nothing more depressing than watching your bank balance tumble in a slow-motion free fall. Stall your inevitable return home by getting a travel job.

From teaching English as a second language to serving as a hostel employee, there are a myriad of ways to make your travel fund last. Slow down on the partying a but, and may be able to actually replenish it – that’s right, it’s possible to stay on the road indefinitely, if that’s what you want.  

Victoria Brewood
victoria@pommietravels.com

Hi I'm Victoria, a British girl from Manchester. After graduating from university I decided there was more to life than the hours between 9 and 5, so I packed my journalism degree into my suitcase to travel the world and find a way to make money at the same time. I now call London home, although I still travel whenever I can. I hope to inspire you to be your own boss, live life and see the world.

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