Looking for an adventure this summer? As college students, it can be very difficult to not only find time but also find money to go on a trip.
Here are a few tips that could possibly save you a big chunk of change.
Don’t waste your money on a fancy hotel!
If you are headed to a destination to see the city around you or relax on the beach all day, don’t spend excessive amounts of money on hotels. There are many cheaper alternatives.
One of my favorites is Airbnb or other sites like it (FlipKey, HomeAway, or VRBO). These sites let you list, find, and rent lodging from people all over the world. The owners have to be verified by the site so you know it is safe, and you can also look at reviews by other people who rented that property. This is a great website to not only save you money but give you your own private home, apartment, villa, or even castle!
Next to Airbnb, an even less expensive place to stay would be hostels. Hostels tend to be used for students, workers, or travelers. You may not have the same level of privacy as an Airbnb or a hotel but if you are on a tight budget, it is a great choice. They often have communal bedrooms but provide lockers for your personals. Many times they also offer a free breakfast. Hostels give you the opportunity to meet people from all over the world.
Stay away from touristy restaurants!
There are many tourist traps when traveling, but especially when it comes to food. If you want to truly experience a culture and the local cuisine, there are a few red flags to avoid. For starters, steer clear of themed restaurants, especially when you are abroad. If you are in Paris and the employees are all wearing matching berets, this is usually a bad sign. Instead, mingle with the locals and ask what their favorite restaurants are.
Street food and markets tend to be very authentic and are quick options as well. Another tip is to walk a little further. Yes, traveling can be exhausting, but do not eat at the restaurant right in front of the Colosseum or Big Ben. I can almost guarantee the food quality will be lower than if you walk a few blocks away from tourist attractions.
Clear your search history when looking for flights!
When it comes to booking flights, make sure you are either in incognito mode while searching online or you are deleting your history. When airline websites see you checking how much flights to Greece are, they will bump up the prices.
Utilize public transportation
Before you arrive to your destination, make sure you learn about the city’s public transportation. This is generally a very inexpensive way to get around the city or country. It is definitely less expensive than renting a car as well.
Do your homework
All in all, if you are trying to save money, the most important aspect of traveling frugally is doing your research. Preparation prior to the trip is essential. Make lists of sites, transportation routes, and restaurants that you do not want to miss. A great way to figure out a daily plan is by marking all the places either on a physical map or tabs on Google Maps. It can also be helpful to check the weather. If it is going to rain one of the days you are on vacation, figure out things to do indoors.
Traveling does not always have to be expensive. If you put forth the effort in planning you can save yourself hundreds of dollars. I hope you found these travel tips helpful and BON VOYAGE!