Travel more, spend less — a guide to economical travelling

It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matters, in the end.

— Ursula K. Le GuinThe Left Hand of Darkness

A lot of times while travelling, we truly only care about the destination and end up spending a lot on travel, particularly because most of us feel the journey isn’t as important. On the other hand I’ve reasons for you to believe otherwise:

  • Adventures are waiting for you around every corner. You never know what you will run into the next moment. You voluntarily choose anonymity, there are no blue pills or red pills here but a whole bunch of pills varying in colours, shapes, and sizes. Basically, the true spirit of adventure is in travelling.
  • “You widen your margins before you leave for a trip, knowing you are going to do things you don’t normally do,” according to Miss Jane Greer, PhD. So you let your guard down for the trip and you might as well find your significant other or make some amazing friends while on the go. Either way it is a WIN-WIN situation.
  • Our definitions of perfection might be very diverse, but the world happens to be a huge place, each part of it a little different from the other, meaning you have millions of things to fall in love with and admire.

Related read: How Jaipur-based enTRIPreneur is using travel to connect entrepreneurs from across the world

Having talked about why travel is very important, we should now move to answering the initial question — how to travel economically? These points might not all be applicable at the same time, but depending upon your situation, some of these might come in handy.

  • Travel in a group: This is one of the simplest things that you can do, and it will surely make a lot of difference. You can carpool (energy efficient), share rooms (cost efficient and also loads of fun), share food (I hope you’re not Joey). You can save on practically everything when you’re together. You might even manage decent discounts off things that you might not get when you’re travelling alone. Safety is one less concern that you have to worry about when you’re travelling in a group to an unknown location.
  • Hitchhike: When travelling alone to a new place, this might just be the perfect solution for you to save money and also connect with the locals very well. They might open up to you and tell you stories that you might have missed out otherwise. Also, while hitchhiking, it is not exactly certain that the other person might be going the same way; sometimes you might have to go to an entirely new place in order to get to your destination. Do not worry at times like these! It’s all part of the bigger picture. Make sure you have loads of time before you pick this mighty adventure pack.
  • Optimise (pre-book): The idea is to make sure that before you set course for a particular place you already have your travel plans pre-booked. This could be very useful for people who have limited resources and time! You might be able to get some discounts while pre-booking in the offer period.

Also read: My journey from 0 to 10K in one month and what it taught me about startups

  • Pre-plan: There are a lot of things that cannot be booked, but you still need to plan for these to avoid unnecessary uncalculated spending. These may not always be fully successful, but they will give you the necessary heads up for a lot of things to come.
  • Travel during the off-season: This is one of the easiest ways of travelling economically. Travelling during the off-season will get you good rates and smaller crowds at tourist destinations. Basically, you will have the awesomeness all to yourself and at a cheaper cost too!
  • Pack less: Packing smart is very important because a lot of your travelling cost will depend upon it — you cannot ask for lifts if you have three trolley bags with you. Less cargo will make you mobile and that means faster and cheaper travel. (FYI: transport services will charge you extra if you have more luggage.)
  • Use your contacts smartly: Ask your friends if they have contacts in places you’re going to visit. Ask them if you could stay at their place. Even if not, they can guide you to places that are more cost-effective, thereby making your travel spending more justifiable.
  • Use technology wisely: There is a lot of information available on the internet that will help you understand your destination scenario better and optimise on the way you travel there. Sites like Airbnb can help you get more affordable living spaces.
  • Cost cuts: While travelling on an extremely tight budget, you need to lower down on useless expenses. Remember if you can do without it, they do without it.

Keep these in mind when you travel next. I hope that you will have a wonderful time both physically and economically.


(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory)



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