Mar 23, 2009

How To Cheaply Travel Abroad

The travel bug is easy to catch. Without warning, you could be struck by the enticing call of distant lands, strange new cultures, and exotic dishes, and once you’ve heard that siren song, it’s hard to forget. Frequently, the only antidote is a healthy dose of wandering around in a foreign country. But don’t think this remedy always comes with the side effect of a deflated wallet- there are many ways to ease the cost of curing the travel bug.

When planning your trip, try to bring along as many companions as you can. Group rates are a great way to reduce airfare and accommodations expenses, as well as all those little things that can add up over time, like tooth paste and toilet paper. Plus, it’s always nice to have friends there to share the experience.

Try to pack as light as you can. Less stuff will mean a lower expense hauling it around, both on your back and your budget. Additionally, keeping all those clothes clean will be cheaper if you simply have less clothing to get dirty.

Learning the language is crucial, not just for getting around, but also for keeping expenses down. Unlike the USA, negotiations over price are commonplace abroad, and it’s easy for locals to take a tourist for all they’re worth when the haggling is one-sided. Being conversant in the local tongue will help keep away any unexpected expenditures.

Although tasting all the different delicacies is fun, it can be a huge drain on the funds. Visit the grocery store and make as many of your own meals as you can, saving any extra money you have to splurge on a restaurant every so often.

If you intend on staying for several months, see if you can make your trip profitable. Get a job teaching English, being a mentor, or simply waiting tables. Each day you work translates into another day of travel.

Finally, remember that just because it’s free doesn’t mean it’s not worthwhile- visit museums, fairs, parks, or any other activity that doesn’t require spending. You’ll be surprised at the differences that local flavor can add to an everyday activity. Make your own tour, perhaps off a free information pamphlet. Even simply walking the streets can be an enriching a unique experience in a foreign country. You might meet someone and get the local highlights and treatment.

It’s possible to travel on just about any budget, if planned correctly. The key is to take only what you need to have a successful trip abroad. If that includes a 5 star hotel accommodation and room service every night, then expect to pay out the nose. But, if you just want to travel for travel’s sake, plan out a budget, look for shortcuts to save money, and get out there!

1 comment:

Jonathan Lopez said...

Some good advice courtesy of Beth Pickett: