If you love to travel like I do, here are some tips to stretch your travel dollar…
Lodging is by far the largest expense when traveling. Couchsurfing is a terrific alternative to the standard hotel room if you’re a bit adventurous. After making an online profile through Couchsurfing.org, you can search their database based on location and other filters, such as age and male/female, for a place to crash for a few nights. It’s totally free and the friendships you make could become lifelong! You may also host people at your place, if you have a couch, an extra bed, or even an air mattress on the floor. In the past two years, I’ve Couchsurfed in Cape Town, South Africa, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Philadelphia, and New York City.
Patio of Cape Town, S. Africa Couchsurfing home
2. Solo Travel
If you’re traveling solo through a travel company, choose a company that doesn’t charge a single supplement fee, such as G Adventures. They’ll pair you up with a roommate and who knows, you may even become Facebook friends with them!
One of my roommates in Thailand through G Adventures
Make lunch your main meal out. It’s typically less expensive than the dinner menu and as an added bonus…you may even lose a few pounds having a lighter evening meal.
Book European trains online through that Country’s train website. An outstanding website for train travel around the world is www.seat61.com. It’s simple to use and not only supplies the website to utilize for booking train transport from one stop to another, but also gives visuals of the train interior and what features it has. The other exceptional website is Germany’s train website www.bahn.de, which provides timetables.
5. Avoid Foreign Transaction Fees
Sign up for a credit card that doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees. Capital One, Discover and Schwab are a few of them. Also, withdraw cash from an ATM when arriving to an international destination, rather than withdrawing money from your bank at home, for a better exchange rate.
6. Travel Partner
Jump in the car or on the plane with someone other than your spouse. Aside from the fact that absence does make the heart grow fonder, you’ll save a chunk of change by splitting the cost of the lodging, car rental, etc. with a friend!
My friend and I in Colorado
7. Free Activities
Instead of shelling out your hard-earned money on expensive tours and museums, choose one of the multitudes of activities that are free when traveling. Such as festivals, having a picnic dinner in the park while people watching, hiking in the woods, outdoor concerts, strolling through historic cemeteries, breathe in the aromas at food markets, touring spectacular Cathedrals. Well, you get the picture…
8. Think twice before you buy that Souvenir
Who needs that touristy souvenir from Amsterdam? The photographs you take are a great memory and don’t collect dust!
9. Location of Lodging
When you plan a trip, choose lodging within walking distance to the subway or bus, to avoid car rental fees. The top rated transit friendly Cities in the United States are New York, San Francisco, Boston, Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Philadelphia! If you’re in Europe, most everywhere has excellent transit options. Also, walking has the added benefit of exercise!
Sign up to receive e-mails from airlines announcing specials. You could snag a $30 round trip flight like I did to Washington D.C. in September from CVG!
We all have limited time, money and energy…so travel smart!