It’s the time of year where many of us are looking forward to some well-earned time off. As we head into the summer months taking a trip away is an excellent idea to help recharge the batteries after a long year.
However, that trip away can be expensive. Ensuring you head away on the trip that you want can take a little planning, so here’s our top ten tips to having the trip you want without breaking the bank.
While a last minute trip for those who don’t like planning always sounds fun, it can cost you a lot. Booking early can often mean you save hundreds if not thousands on flights, accommodation and activities. If you have missed the boat on booking early, search on websites for last minute deals. If you’re flexible about where you’re going, you can find some last minute gems that will save you plenty of money.
Don’t dismiss out of season
While it can be great to visit places in the middle of summer, the fact remains that peak season equals peak prices. You can save on visiting many countries by visiting out of peak season and still see everything you want to see. It also means you avoid the crowds and queues that plague peak travel times.
Think about a package deal
Plenty of travel companies offer package deals that enable you to combine flights and accommodation to save money. This can be a great way to save your hard earned dollars on the upfront trip costs, giving you more to spend when you actually get there! While horror stories like the recent Thomas Cook collapse can scare some off, this tends to be the exception rather than the rule.
Avoid eating out every night
While diving into the local cuisine is always an exciting part of a trip away, eating out for every meal is always going to be costly wherever you travel. If you have an accommodation option that has cooking facilities look at making the odd meal yourself; you can always grab local ingredients and give the local produce a try.
Don’t always go to the best of the best
As an extension of the above, unless you’re a foodie travelling for that reason alone, try and avoid the big splurges when it comes to travelling. While eating at the finest places is a great experience, you’re going to rack up quite a bill.
Ditto for accommodation. While 5 or 6 star all the way is great, it will come at a premium cost. Look at mixing up your hotel options with some more budget places along the way.
Travel with others and split the costs
Rather than copping the entire bill yourself, look at travel options that include a group of people where you can split the different costs. This can dramatically reduce your costs, accommodation in particular. For example, sharing a large house or apartment always brings down the cost of your stay.
Avoid ‘tourist’ prices
In every place in the city there’s always tourist ‘hotspots’. Often near a major landmark, they may offer a great view but come with an added price tag, often not worth the extras you’re paying. For example, having a great view of the Eiffel Tower might be exciting, but if you head a few streets back chances are you’ll find an amazing meal without the tourist ‘tax’ on top.
Use your reward points
I often hear people discussing how many ‘points’ they have in rewards programs. People often hoard these points for a rainy day, and never use them. Making sure you cash these points in can dramatically reduce your holiday spending, or even give you a better holiday experience without the additional cost of paying for it yourself.
Take advantage of freebies
A classic example of this: Free city tours. Often for a couple of dollars, donated to your tour guide, you can get a free guided tour that provides you with plenty of local knowledge and information without having to spend a fortune.
Researching, budgeting, and planning will pay off
It wouldn’t make sense not to take the financial planner angle: It’s a fact that if you do your research, budget appropriately, and plan for your spending you will save money. This also comes down to your pre-trip planning, for example, it always pays to know where your money is going. Investing your money wisely can mean that you have more disposable income when it comes time to take that trip, which is always a nice way to travel!
General Advice Disclaimer
The information in this blog is provided by Apt Wealth Partners (AFSL 436121 ABN 49 159 583 847) and is of a general nature only. It may not be relevant to your personal needs, objectives or financial circumstances. The circumstances of each investor are different and you should seek advice from a financial planner who can consider if the strategies and products are right for you.