Hi everyone! I hope your summer has been great and you are indulging in the last few weeks of the season. I know I am! My summer has been filled with lots of travel, and I could not think of a better time to share some tips with you all about how I afford to travel throughout the year and you can too!
First and foremost, I think it is important to say, people who travel often, make traveling a priority and are willing to sacrifice in other areas in order to be able to travel and travel often.
+Budgeting-The first thing to think about when wanting to travel is your budget. How much money are you able to set aside each paycheck for travel? This amount will be different for everyone. For me, traveling is important, so I am willing to set a certain amount aside each month and I am willing to add extra funds to the amount, if available, even if it means forgoing purchases throughout the month. I also have the amount automatically transferred to a travel account each paycheck, which leads me tomy next tip!
+Travel Account-Have a separate savings account for your travel funds. It might not seem like it will make a difference, but having a separate account specifically for traveling helps to save up money for traveling. Something not having to transfer the money yourself and automatically see the amount set aside helps me to keep building my travel fund throughout the year. If you do not have a separate account and you are serious about traveling, I highly recommend giving this tip a try to see how it works for you.
+Cut out unnecessary expenses-If you are like me, before I made it a priority to travel, I found it hard to find ways to cut back on expenses so I was able to save more. Once I was serious about traveling and really looked at what expenses I could cut out, I found several ways to create extra travel savings.
- STOP EATING OUT!! I honestly, CANNOT stress this enough!! One of the main ways I save money for travel is eating at home. Yes, that means I pack my lunch, make dinner every night, turn down lunches and dinners BUT it saves me so much money each month!
- Cancel monthly subscriptions- I am guilty of this myself. I love me a monthly subscription, but I had to take a look how much it was costing me each month and ask myself if I was really using the products I was receiving. I was able to cut back some and add this money to my travel fund.
- Cancel cable and unnecessary utilities- It is amazing how much you can save by cutting back on cable, dish or whatever you use. There are so many options for TV these days, you can cut back and still watch many of the shows you love.
+Use Google Travel to research flights- Before any trip, I always start my research by using google travel. I love it because it will bring up the location you are interested in but it will also show the price to fly to any location across the world for the dates you have selected. This will give you an idea of what airline you can book travel at the lowest cost, give you options of different airlines and gives you what you need to book with whatever airline you choose. You can also track flights and google will alert you if the price drops or goes up. It is a great way to keep track of flight trends.
+Book flights on Tuesday and Wednesday-Trust me, after years of traveling and researching, I know from experience flights are cheaper on Tuesday and Wednesday. I search flights nearly every day, especially if I have a destination in mind and booking on these days will save you some money.
+Travel to cheaplocations-I cannot tell you how many times the location I decided to travel to was based on it being the cheapest place to travel for my travel dates. Really! There is not a place in the world I do not want to see, so I am open to looking at my options. Mexico City, Greece, Hawaii were all destinations I traveled to because they were the cheapest for the dates I needed. Saved mesome money and I have not been disappointed by the cheaper destination.
+Sign up for hotel,airlines and credit card points– If you are serious about traveling this is one way to enjoy some of the benefits for the money you spend traveling. If Iam booking a hotel I usually book through a website (hotels.com, Expedia, etc.) This will give me one free night for every 10. Might not sound like much but I’ll take a free night in a hotel anytime. You can save your days and use them consecutively if you like as well. I also try to book hotels where you can earn points through the hotel bonus program such as SPG Rewards. There are certain hotels under SPG and I usually try to stay loyal to the hotels to earn points to use later. I do the same with airlines; I usually try to book withDelta or American. This way, the points I earn for a flight add up over timeand I can use towards an airline ticket in the future. The same goes for mycredit card. I use all my points from purchases throughout the year for travel, be it hotels or flights, but all my points go towards reducing the cost of my travel.
+Save on lodging with Airbnb-I love my a hotel stay but depending how long I will be visiting an area sometimes the cost of a hotel is just not doable. Airbnb is great alternative to be able to stay in the area you would like for a much cheaper cost. While traveling Italy, I could not believe the deals I found, with views of the Colosseum in Rome, across from the Duomo in Milan. It was amazing and more than worth the nightly Airbnb price.
+Visit locations where you have family and friends-Often, throughout the year, I visit places where I have friends and family. I am lucky to have loved ones across the US and it is always a great time to visit their city and explore with them. Often, I get to spend a night or the entire time with them at their home and I do not have to pay for a hotel. This saves a ton of money and helps me travel to several different cities each year.
+Travel during the off season- If you really want to save money on travel,travel during the off-season. Often flights and hotels are much cheaper duringthe off-season. I have done this severaltimes and it saved me so much money. When traveling to Australia, it was summer time in America, but the beginning of winter down under. While I was there the weather was more like fall, perfect to explore and smaller lines and waiting for attractions. It was awesome!
I hope some of these tips help you, like they have helped me to travel the world and you are able to check a place off your bucket list this year.
Until next time guys! Thanks for stopping in!!