Tips for an on budget summer holiday


Hello you wonderful people =D
Planning an summer holiday? Or any holiday to go on this year? But being on a budget?
Then you are perfectly right here ;)
I am planning some trips for this year myself and came up with the idea of talking about some tips I can give you about: How to travel on a budget :)
I do have a lot of experience how to travel on a budget...because that is basically everything I do ;)
I collected most of my experiences on my two month backpacking trip to ireland 4 years ago...cant believe that it is that long ago actually ^^
Traveling is definitely luxurious for many many people nowadays and it kind of is for me. But there is so much out there to discover and so many adventure to experience, so much beauty to see.
I am convinced that traveling is one of the most important things in life - go somewhere, experience things, see and learn difference. I also know that there are many many people out there who prefer to stay at home and that is perfectly fine :) but I think even you should go out sometimes and just discover your city or the countryside surrounding you ;) Just remember "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn´t do that by the ones you did do." - Mark Twain

I am sure many of you know that feeling - standing surrounded by overwhelming nature, by breathtaking architecture and so many unfamiliar people and cultures and just being speechless - just standing there and being so thankful that you are able to see and experiences this in your life.


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“Traveling – it leaves you speechless, then turns you into a storyteller.” – Ibn Battuta


I would love to hear what you experienced and any additional tips in the comments below ;)
Also I am sorry if I start to ramble a lot ;)


I. RESEARCH

One important thing when traveling on a budget is always to do the research before you spend any money.
First because you have to check the days and time when the flights are the cheapest and also to make sure when your accommodation is most expensive which is most of the times the weekends.
Second because there are so many amazing things in most cities which you can to for free and sometimes there are things which are only free on special days.
Also make sure to learn as much about the country you are traveling to - also about bank holidays and stuff like this - religious days and restrictions.
 - you can find many tips online for example on lonely planet.
You also going to want to know all about the save and more criminal areas, especially when traveling to a big city - this is important for choosing your accommodation. An other thing is to learn about the weather in different season - you don´t want to spend all your money and that walk through the rain all the time, don´t you ;) Just check the best times to travel to the country of your choice.
Also make sure to find the cheapest, fastest why to travel ;) you can save a looooot of money there!!
And if you book a flight - make sure to know everything about their luggage costs and in general make sure to know everything which could cost extra!
And never forget the exchange rate when traveling to a country with different currency! Oh and find the easiest way to pay... I don´t have a credit card but if you are not in the US but want to travel there I recommend a credit card because it is waaaay easier to pay with one there - ask your bank guy for a prepaid one - those are damn handy ;) where ever you travel - big help and you can pay with those practically everywhere ;) You can learn a lot about that online, for example I´ve come across Credit Card Insider. Its an educational resource that can help you to understand credit scored and what credit card is right for you. So browse there for more info or just ask some people at your bank ;)


II. PLANNING

Once you feel like knowing all about your destination you want or need to know you can start with the planning =D yay such an exciting and frighting part for me all the time ;)
Fist it is important, if you want to safe money, start planning and booking soon enough. The closer it gets to the day you want to leave the more money you are going to have to spend!
Well what do you have to plan?
I always think that planning it is one of the most important things to do if you have to be careful with the money.
First the basics:
- flight/train/bus/car/bike/...
- hotel/hostel/apartment/couch surfing/...
Once you have those planed you can feel relaxed because you basically want to know how to reach your destination and then you are going to want to know where to stay...at least the first few days :)
And then based on your research plan a few things to do :) If you want to do guided day trips like you can do them in ireland to special places - check out when to do them and plan them on one of your days and plan around the thing you want to to which are for free :)
Of cause you don´t have to plan every single things every day but I think a rough plan helps a lot also if you have to buy bus tickets or something to somewhere on one certain day ;) you don´t want to miss anythings and have to waste money on going back ;) Also try to get around cheaply. Walk as much as possible - its free and you see so much more ;) and don´t forget public transport systems
Also never forget to visit tourist informations - they always have special discounts on everything, especially on transport in cities and museums and things like that ;) and they can tell you everything you want to know ;)
An other good thing to plan are your meals - depending on your accommodation.

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III. ACCOMMODATION

Now the accommodation is one thing to save money.
First think about what you are going to do during your stay - is is a wellness trip or a city trip? Because that is a huge influence on your decision! Also are you traveling in a group or alone?

The cheapest way is definitely couch surfing, which is a brave thing to do and probably not a thing for everybody - I never did it so - sorry no experiences here. You can research for that online for example here on couchsurfing.com. I am sure it can be very nice and exciting ;)

An good alternative are Hostels. Which was my choice all the time. I stays in many many hostels on my travels and I had 95% good experiences. Most of them are very clean and the people are most of the time so nice and helpful. There are very many differences between the hostels you can choose from, again check what you need and than choose what you want - again in choosing hostels I think its pretty important to know as much as possible about the neighborhood you going to stay in.
Hostels are definitely the cheapest way to stay in a city if you want to stay as central as possible.
Here you also have to choose between dorms and privates. Dorms are always cheaper, the more people in one room the cheaper it gets.
I always book my hostels on hostelworld.com

The next and more expensive alternative is a B&B - a bed & breakfast. These can get really expensive but they are so lovely all the time - again I cant remember if I ever stayed in one, but these are actually like a very personal hotel ;) B&B´s are most of the time private houses where the owners rent their spare rooms and make a lovely breakfast for their visitors.

An other ways to stay... ;) riming today ;) an other way are apartments. Those are a good way between the hostel and hotel - but remember you have to buy all your food yourself ;) No breakfast included ;) that is a plus in spending the money ;)

And last but not least the hotel. Here are de differences huge!!! And the prices are very much depending on the time of the year you are traveling - a lot of research to do here. But I think tendentially hotels are more expensive than the others. Especially if you want to stay central.
Of cause Hotels are ...most of the time...the most comfortable and luxurious way to stay and sleep, also they have the best breakfast and depending on what you book a good dinner ;)


IV. FOOD

Well...the food topic...this gets a bit tricky because you have to find the right way between saving money and enjoy the local cuisine ;)
Well what did I do. If you have a breakfast included...eat as much as possible in the morning to stay full as long as possible - that will save you a loooooot of money ;)
Also buy snacks in local supermarkets and look for the price to save a lot of money - buy things which are going to fill your tummy as long as possible and stay healthy ;) you are going to need the energy. For dinner, if not included, you can cook for yourself (in Hostels are always kitchens) or you can treat yourself to a nice meal in a restaurant with local food - I hate to say this but look a little for the prices ;) you can loos a looooot of your budget on food and drinks - in many countries alcohol as sooo expensive so try to avoid it.
Also avoid fast food restaurants as often as possible! They may be cheap but if you go there everyday for lunch and dinner - you´ll loose a lot of money ;) I did this - don´t!!!
Just try to not eat out...not sure if it makes sense ;) Eating out is always more expensive!!!
But treat yourself if it is in the budget - especially if there is a very special local cuisine - don´t miss it ;)

V. SPECIAL EXPERIENCES AND OTHER TIPS

My last tip is: you may be in this country only once in your life time...so save as much of your many to experience it to the fullest.
Get some special memorabilia and try to save money for those - think about it... ;)
An other thing I wanted to add here is to be honest with yourself and everyone who travels with you about how much you can spend...don´t say "Yes I can spent 200€ per night on the hotel" and once you are there you can´t afford anything else. Be honest and spend the money one thing which are more important...well you know if the hotel is the most important thing...then spend it ;) hahaha
and of cause depending on the kind of holiday you are planning ;)
If you know the budget you have for the holiday - spend it all!!! Don´t bring home half of it because you think you have to save it - think about how much you can spend before you start to plan and than use it all!!!

ENJOY your trip that is the most important part, beside all the money saving!!! Honestly!!!

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“We travel not to escape life, but for life not to escape us.” – Anonymous

For more inspiration watch Louis Cole from FunForLouis - https://www.youtube.com/user/FunForLouis
and read as many travel blogs as possible, and watch travel channels because there you´ll get it as it is and there are many experiences on how to travel on a budget ;)

In the end there is one thing I have to say...and I have to remind myself of a lot - its better to do a little trip to a city near you which you can enjoy, than to do nothing and only stay at home.
Broaden your horizon - even if it is only with a day trip somewhere you have never been to :)


With lots of love

♥♥♥

Verena


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