Did you know that in 2018 the number of international tourists hit 1.4 billion?
The opportunity to leave your homeland to see fascinating foreign lands and taste foreign food is a dream come true.
Are you a wanna-be world traveler but your budget is holding you back? It may not need to. More and more people are realizing that they can travel abroad. The secret is in good planning and budgeting.
Want to learn how this is done? Check out our guide to shoestring travel and having fun abroad on a budget.
Count Every Dollar and Cent
Think of your vacation and you likely think of freedom. Freedom from the rat race and your daily schedule. However, if you think freedom from budgeting is possible, you will not be able to get very far.
The most successful shoe-string travelers enjoy the best of both worlds. They are able to enjoy incredible travel experiences, yet they count every cent along the way. Every cent.
This is logical. Thanks to the abundance of travel blogs, you can do significant planning before you start your trip. However, unless you have unlimited cash, which most of us don’t, you will need to note every expense.
By doing this you will know whether you are overspending, or whether you have saved enough to do that scuba diving that you have always dreamed of.
Budget Each Day’s Expenditure
Count every dollar you have spent, but also plan every dollar you will spend. During the planning stages of your trip you no doubt stipulated your budget for the trip. Break this down into days and limit yourself to this.
If you are a long-term traveler there may be ways to gather some cash along the way – English teaching, remote work or even payday loans online are a source of cash for many.
Regardless of how you earn your money, plan carefully ahead of time on how you will use it and avoid too much spontaneous spending.
Drink Less Alcohol
For many, a vacation means a chance to kick back and relax with a few beers – more frequently than back home. However, this should raise the alarm for your budget.
If you head to the east you may have the appeal of cheap drinks. So cheap that you have a few every evening. As a result, you end up spending more on alcohol than you ever would back home.
Or in other countries alcohol is heavily taxed. In some countries, it is harder to come by for religious or cultural reasons. This can mean that the price is significantly higher.
All of this can have a significant impact on your budget. You have set yourself a financial budget, why not set yourself an alcohol budget? When you can afford to sit on a beach somewhere you never expected – you may just thank yourself.
Take Your Time
The temptation to “see a country” in 3 or 4 days can be very tempting. However, this is rarely a cheap way to travel. After flying in, you may need to arrange internal flights to see everything that the country can offer in a short amount of time.
A better and cheaper way to travel is to stay in one location for a longer amount of time. After a couple of days, you will have worked out the location of the markets, where the cheapest food can be found. You can research local transport options which may get you to the best places, but at a fraction of the cost of air travel.
It often takes a few days to get the best local information. If you are looking for a beautiful secluded beach, you are unlikely to find it on the first day. Stick around. You will have a better vacation and your budget will benefit too.
Travel Like the Locals
Finding the cheapest mode of transport is a priority. It is not only cheaper, but it will also give you the cultural experience that you are traveling for. There is nothing like traveling in a crowded taxi or minibus with a local family with traditional music playing through the speakers.
If you want priceless local information, the place to meet the locals is on public transport. They are not looking to sell you anything, but they know where to go and how to get there.
Eat Like the Locals
Eating like locals is the best way to enjoy the rich variety of local food wherever you are. It is also the best way of sticking within your budget.
It may not be the same as your food back home, but it may just open your mind to a whole new culinary world.
From experience, many travelers will tell you that eating equivalents of western food is not a good idea. It results in negative comparisons with the quality of food and is almost always much more expensive than local food. Do yourself a favor and eat the food of the land you worked so hard to visit.
Choose Safe But Cheap Accommodation
From the beginning lets remember, we want cheap accommodation while not compromising on safety. This is especially true for solo female travelers.
However, after remembering this important principle, cheap accommodation is usually not difficult to come by. It has a genuine impact on your expenses. The important point is to plan ahead.
If you arrive in a city late at night with no plans or booked room, you will likely be too tired to research hotels. Or rooms may not be available. Try to book ahead where possible. In other locations, try to arrive early enough to be able to walk around and research your options.
Family-run places are often cheaper and come with breakfast. They will also take a greater interest in you than a hotel. Making friends with the family is also a helpful security measure.
Shoestring Travel and So Much More
Shoestring travel does not need to be boring travel! There are many ways to travel the world and have life-changing experiences without breaking the bank. You just need the right information to get you on your way.
If you want to find the right information to help you make good decisions, our blog is for you! We have authoritative articles on a number of subjects including travel and lifestyle, so keep reading.