I’ve done a lot of travelling in my time and I’ve been able to do that by keeping my spending low while abroad. From backpacking around Asia to skiing down the mountains of Austria and enjoying vibrant cities like Milan, Helsinki and Copenhagen – all while still keeping the costs down. So how have I done it? Here are my top tips to save whilst travelling the world:
Use a tourism card
Many cities offer the chance to buy a great value tourism card which lets you into as many attractions as you wish for just one price. Take tourist hotspot London as an example. A 3-day London Pass card can save you more than £113 ($193 AUS) on visiting attractions such as the Tower of London, a cruise on the Thames and London Zoo and you can get travel on the Underground included.
Avoid bank charges
If using your credit or debit card to withdraw money or for paying for things overseas, check before you travel how much you could be paying in fees. Some ATMs can incur you a $5 fee each time you withdraw any money from a cash point. Yep, that’s EACH time. Also be mindful of currency conversion fees. This is when a lender converts Australian dollars into foreign currency. Look for a credit card that offers no foreign transaction fee. If you want to keep an eye on the markets and see how the foreign currency market is performing, check out IG.com.
Make your own lunch
You could save hundreds of dollars a month by simply making your own food while travelling. Instead of buying food and coffee out, live like a local; try the produce from the local market, pick up some fresh bread and make your own sandwiches. Get hold of a thermos and make coffee to take with you on days out. However, be sensible when eating abroad. Wash any fresh produce like fruit and veg well and be aware of local hygiene.
Enjoy free attractions
Most of my enjoyment when travelling comes from being able to get out in the fresh air and enjoy what’s around me. I’ll happily grab a map and set off on foot or bike to visit a local park, temple or wander down to the beach. It’s all part of the fun of travelling and I’ll walk for hours; best of all it’s free!
Instead of booking into expensive hotels, why not try a local guesthouse or apartment? You’ll get more of a feel for the local culture while usually paying much less than if you were to stay in a hotel. In an apartment you’ll generally have self-service facilities so you can make your own evening meals to save on eating out. I’m not saying never eat out – but you can save a few dollars by eating in some nights.
Try local transport
When going between destinations check out the local trains and buses. You’ll find it’s much cheaper than taking a taxi and often much more enjoyable too as you get to view the scenery off the beaten track.
Save on mobile phone charges
Using your mobile phone abroad can rack up sky-high charges. Consider buying a pre-paid SIM at home before travelling. GoSim or TravelSIM offer these. Turn off roaming on your phone and use a Wi-Fi hotspot instead. You could also save by buying a local SIM in the country you are visiting. Your phone will need to be unlocked for pre-paid or local SIMs.
Naomi Webb is an enthusiastic freelance writer specialising in the latest family lifestyle content.
She has written a broad range of content for a variety of audiences and loves to take on a writing challenge!