The number one question we get asked by our family and friends is “how the heck can you afford to travel all the time?”. We understand how hard it can be to save money for travel, so we have put together our top ways to save money that we have personally utilised.
We travelled to 13 countries and 19 cities (not including revisits) throughout one of the toughest times for acquiring money, full time university. Using these tips we managed to go on a minimum of 2-3 holidays a year during our 4 year degree whilst working a casual/part-time job on the weekends – and yes we pay for all our holidays out of our own pocket! We hope to share these tips with you to help you get out there and travel more.
Note: This post isn’t about budget travel or scoring an amazing deal, more about the physical act of getting that money into a travel account.
Tip 1. Plan Ahead
If you are looking at a big and potentially expensive holiday then we recommend planning at least a year in advanced for multiple reasons. First, it gives you more time to save and allows less strain on your funds when putting money aside, after all we all have bills and mouths to feed. Secondly, if you have the time to put money aside then if a deal pops up during your saving year you have the flexibility to book that flight immediately and save a tonne of money.
Tip 2. Try the 52 week save money challenge
If you are struggling to put large sums away don’t worry you don’t have to – start small with the 52 week money saving challenge. What is it? Well you put aside $1 in week 1, $2 in week 2, $3 in week 3, and in 52 weeks you will have $1,378, a perfectly good amount for a holiday.
Tip 3. Track flights through apps
Skyscanner, Expedia and various other sites has saved us countless amounts of money on our holidays to a point that we have flat out stopped even walking into travel agencies. Some of the websites give you flexibility to see the prices of flights on either side of the days you are wanting to travel. You never know – leaving on a Monday morning instead of a Tuesday night might save you money.
Tip 4. If you are in a relationship – pay your own way
If you are traveling with a partner or significant other, as sweet and kind as it can be, set a ground rule that each of you will pay your own way. You work hard for your money and it’s simply not fair for you to pay for both halves of the trip. Money can put a lot of strain on couples and nothing is less enjoyable than watching all your hard earned cash disappearing whilst you are trying to create memories together. There is nothing wrong with paying for dinner here and there, but if it comes to a return flight, we don’t recommend doing it.
Tip 5. Pre pay as much as possible
This is not necessarily a travel saving tip – but we do this on every single holiday. Here at Flying the Nest we believe that activities (free and paid) are one of the most important aspects of travel and it can be harder to do them when you are on holiday and your watching your cocktails and shopping money dwindle from tours. If you are an adventure traveller book activities after paying off accommodation and flights.
Tip 6. Spend 5-10 minutes a night checking deals
You probably spend more time on social media than what is required on this tip. Try to put a maximum of 5-10 minutes into each night to check for flight and accommodation deals. It almost becomes a routine, and when you find that sweet deal, it all becomes worth it.
Tip 7. Get your big bills out of the way first
Depending on how far you are travelling ensure you pay for flights and accommodation first. This way you get the hard work out of the way and then the rest is you saving for spending money – which we all know is for the fun stuff.
Tip 8. Piggy Bank for Small Change
The old piggy bank trick works like a charm. It is so easy to spend those few dollars sitting in your wallet on coffee and snacks so why not put them towards tours and experiences? It may not be a lot, but it can add up to a decent amount if you do it over the course your savings year.
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