There’s nothing I like more than a good old travel hack to save money on holidays. I’ve picked up plenty over the years and naturally some are much easier than others. Here are 8 easy ones to adopt. I guarantee they will help you save your pennies, regardless of whether you’re a newbie traveller or a die-hard nomad!
Don’t travel on a Saturday
Sure, I understand that for some of you, it might be more convenient to travel on a Saturday (you’ll use one less day’s annual leave). However, think of it like Christmas shopping: it’s best to avoid the airport on a Saturday like you would Oxford Street in London! Everyone wants to fly on a weekend, so not only will the airport experience be horrible, you’ll pay more for your flight too. It’s a supply and demand thing.
Be flexible with your destination
I’m not proposing that you let a random computer generator choose your holiday destination, so you arrive in the back-end of nowhere with nothing to do. Yet!…if you take the lead from Skyscanner for example, you could save a fortune. Just choose your dates (avoiding Saturdays) and they will list all available flights and prices. Then, make your choice accordingly. Voila!
Use your debit/credit card abroad the right way
Many people are shunning foreign currency providers in favour of the convenience of taking their debit/credit card away. The problem is that with most of these cards, you’ll not only get an unfavourable rate…you’ll pick up extra commissions and fees too!
I have been trying out various cards recently to see what is the best and I believe I have found the perfect combination! I now use my Monzo card when I travel to get the best rates in combination with my Curve Card.
Curve have completed simplified my financial life by connecting all of my accounts (my main bank account, my Monzo card, and my credit cards) into just one smart card and one even smarter app!
With the Curve app, every time I want to make a purchase, I just select what account of mine I want to use, and then use the Curve card to make the payment.
Curve has a complete timeline of all of my transactions, on all of my accounts, in one place.
It’s an absolute dream for a girl like me who is a freelancer and has to do her own taxes! I can mark any transaction I have on the timeline as ‘business’ and Curve automatically categories everything else into neat slots: food, beauty, transport etc.
Get £5 free with your Curve Card
Find discount codes
Doing a little research and making the most of sites like Groupon will help you find really good travel holiday deals. You will be able to save on hotels, grab last minute holiday bargains and find out sweet deals.
Don’t always fly direct
For a lot of travellers, the idea of a layover, or travelling on two separate planes to one destination is a nightmare. But, try to shift your focus slightly and see it a different way. If someone said to you moments before your flight, that they would pay you £100 to sit in the airport for two hours and take a later flight, would you do it? Hell yes, I would.
Airports have restaurants, they have bars, they have shopping and comfy seats. Go take a pew and get paid £100 for taking two flights. It’s another way to ensure you can keep travelling for so much longer.
Don’t exchange currency at the airport
You’ve worked hard to save money for your travels, so why throw it away? I mentioned the perils of taking your debit/credit card aboard earlier but there is another, more malevolent player at work in the foreign currency world: the airport bureau! *Cue sinister organ chords*.
That little kiosk looks all bright and shiny, yet they can take a whopping 11% commission. Yeah, that £1000 travel money you have, could be reduced to under £900 within seconds! That’s a meal out or the price of renting a kickass motorbike. It’s a lot of money. Don’t put yourself under daylight robbery.
Don’t eat out every single meal
Everyone likes to eat out on holiday. It’s one of the great treats of going away. But eating out every night isn’t a necessity and finding alternatives can save you a wedge. If you have cooking facilities, then having a meal in mixes things up a bit. Get yourself to a local food market and buy produce that the town is famous for. If you don’t cook at home it makes a change too!
Stop travelling during high-season
I know it’s tempting to jet off during high-season. That’s when everyone goes and that’s when you’re “guaranteed” sun. I think “shoulder” season is a great time to travel and save money on holidays. If summer is the ‘head’ then May or September might be the shoulder. September is an especially great time to travel as you escape the “Ahhh, Winter’s coming” terror sweeping through the UK.
One of my favourite places to find a good flight price is with Skyscanner. If you keep an eye on their weekly deals, you might just be able to grab yourself a plane ticket bargain. Download the Skyscanner app to get the best daily deals!
GET TRAVEL INSURANCE
Don’t scrimp on your most important solo travel safety tool.
Get travel insurance and ensure peace of mind!
Get Travel Insurance
There’s nothing worse than thinking you have money to travel, to then find yourself broke because you didn’t get travel insurance. Be safe, think straight and make sure you’re covered. If anything goes wrong, you won’t be getting any nasty surprises in your bank account and continue to save money for holidays.
Good luck traveller! Put these travel hacks to good use and let me know if you save yourself some pennies!