Vacations can be an expensive business. Whether you’re flying solo or you’re heading away with friends, family or your partner, it’s always going to hit your purse harder than you’d hoped. That’s because there are flights to pay for, there’s the hotel, and there are food and drink, all of which tend to be rather expensive in the world’s top tourist destinations. This is a short guide to how you’ll be able to save on your next vacation, offering four quality tips to help you holiday for less and create more memories without breaking the bank.
Your primary source of cheaper vacations is certainly by making advanced bookings. Where flights are concerned, you’ll be able to half if not quarter the price of flights by booking 6 months in advance instead of 6 weeks. If you’re able to plan this far in advance, it’s incredibly well worth it. The same goes for hotels – which will not yet be booked up and therefore won’t be charging peak rates – and even excursions and activities, such as cheap theatre tickets or wine-tasting tours. The earlier you book, the more you’ll save.
Avoid the Trap
There’s a reason that the phrase “tourist trap” exists. It’s because some places in the world see tourists as cash cows to extract as much money from as possible – whether or not they’re getting value for money. In some cases, this can come to define a destination – like the south of Spain – or a small resort, and other times it can simply mean that you ought not to eat by the Great Pyramids of Giza – where restaurants charge quadruple for food that’s half as good as a couple of alleyways along. Be savvy and avoid tourist hotspots when it comes to parting with your cash.
Some cultures in the world – especially well-developed Western cultures – don’t appreciate haggling, but a majority of the world’s cultures have the concept of bartering deeply inlaid in their trading system. This can be great fun to involve yourself in: every taxi or hotel room you’ll be able to suggest lower prices and bargain to find a price that both the customer and the owner are comfortable with. It’s a social custom, but it’s also a way to save money: the first price you’re given by the vendor, hotel owner or taxi driver is always going to be extortionate!
There can be the temptation, while on holiday, to really treat yourself, and to spare no expense in having the most luxurious and flamboyant time. If you’ve got the money to do so, then why not go ahead, but if you’re reading this article, you probably can’t quite afford to hold this attitude. Find ways you can save money by avoiding luxury and you’ll quickly find vacations halve in price. Even buying a loaf of bread and some ham for lunch will save you a good bit of money on a posh restaurant.
These four tips will help you reframe your vacationing experience around a cheaper and better value time away – something that’ll mean you’re able to afford more trips in the future.