11 Money-Saving Travel Tips for the Money Conscious Traveler
When we think about travel the topic of money always comes to mind. Unless one is loaded with money, most of us have no choice but to consider the cost of traveling.
Sometimes just one little travel tip can be a life saver or can save one a lot of frustration.
Here are a few money-saving travel tips I use which you may want to consider.
Not all of them will apply to any one traveler or travel destination. Just pick and choose any that might apply to you. A dollar saved just may be a dollar more to spend on your hard earned vacation or other travels.
1. Take a First Aid Kit
I take a first aid kit during my travels. These are perfect for those minor emergencies that occur at the drive to your destination spot or even while you’re there. Buying them on the road can be costly, so bring your own first aid kit and save that money for something else.
The same thing applies when flying out of the area. If there is a problem where a first aid kit would come in handy it is right there. No need to worry or spend time trying to find one in a strange place.
2. Select a Rental Car
Be sure to choose the right type of car as per your needs. By choosing to rent an appropriate car, you can be certain of having a pleasant time. Also be sure to check rates for the different types of cars.
Sometimes, depending on which cars are available, you can rent a larger, roomier car for the same or less than an economy car. In such cases you will enjoy a roomier and maybe smoother riding car plus save money too.
3. Travel Alarm Clock
I used to take an alarm clock, which helped me to catch an early flight. It came in handy when I had to check out of my hotel before a strict checkout time. For situations like these, a travel alarm clock is very useful. Travel alarm clocks used to be very basic devices. Now, travel alarm clocks can be very advanced. They may include features that make them perfectly suited for specific travel situations.
Another useful idea for travel alarms is to use either your travel alarm clock or the one in the hotel. Set one to the current time and the other to your time zone, if different. That way if you need to call back home you can easily glance at the appropriate clock and know exactly what time it is back home in case you need to call there.
4. Bicycle Sharing
If you like the idea of riding bikes use bicycle sharing programs when possible. People can usually borrow and return bikes at any station in the service region very conveniently. Therefore, bicycle-sharing systems are normally used as a short distance trip to supplement private vehicles as well as regular public transportation.
5. Grocery Stores
I used to take few grocery items with me during my travels so I didn’t need to search for a grocery store for emergency hungry purposes. Now I can save time and cost for searching in a new place if I have my snacks with me.
An example of this was on my last trip to the Philippines. I loaded up with several snacks to supplement the baby-size single packet of snacks provided for the 16 hour flight back home.
I used to take a cooler along with me which helps to store a lot of fresh products in it.It also helps keep the food out of the melting water. On a hot day, a cold drink from my cooler sure does beat paying 2-3 times more at the hotel.
Alternately, if you are staying in hotels or similar, be sure to get a room with a cooler or small refrigerator in it. They are standard in a lot of hotels and the like. However, not all places you might stay have coolers, as I found out recently. An alternate room at a hotel in the Philippines they assigned us to had no refrigerator or window. We immediately refused that room.
7. Rooms with a Microwave Oven
I Look for a room with a microwave oven to heat and cook my food. It saves cooking time and can make some foods tastier. Microwave ovens are great for rewarming food that is cold. Personally I like popcorn. With a microwave it only takes a couple of minutes heating for a bowl size helping of hot popcorn.
Sometimes you have leftover food you may take back to your hotel room. A microwave oven is perfect for rewarming it. Microwave ovens consume less electricity if you are conscious about saving energy or going green.
8. Don’t Always Check Bags
I almost never check bags when flying. On airlines where they charge for checking bags, you can save on luggage fees. That is if traveling in the US and some foreign airlines. Be sure to check airline regulations concerning baggage policies for the different airlines. A few do let you take two bags aboard the plane. Some only one. Some airlines charge you big time money for baggage or extra baggage. Check your airline policy before packing your bags!
9. AAA Discounts
This applies to travel in the United States. No matter what is at the top of your financial priority list, AAA Financial Services suggests developing a checklist. It should include the key financial and other components that make a household run. By looking at each component, you can determine what financial repairs or maintenance may be necessary.
For example, you might have a leaky faucet(s) or toilet water valve or hose. You better get that fixed before you do your travels. You wouldn’t want to return home with a flooded house.
10. Public Transportation
Public transportation is not necessarily a bad thing. It definitely is not appropriate for all situations. But where it might be appropriate, you might want to take advantage of it.
While maybe not as enjoyable as commuting in your own personal vehicle, it is an alternative. Public transportation does ease congestion, reduce emissions, and give you plenty of quality time to people watch. It could possibly give you time as well, to know your “neighbors.”
11. Include Breakfast And/ or Happy Hour Snacks
I prefer to go to a hotel, motel, or inn with breakfast and snacks. That way I don’t need to spend time searching for food and stuff. I can utilize my time for other worthwhile purposes.
As an aside, if you like fast food be aware it may not taste the same in a foreign country as it does at home. As an example I eat fast food once in a while. When I was overseas I was hungry and I didn’t feel like eating the local food one afternoon. While everyone else was enjoying their favorite local food I opted for one of my fast food favorites. Boy was I surprised and disappointed. The food was dry and almost tasteless. That was the first and last time I tried fast food there.
Some of these travel money-saving tips may not be applicable to wherever you may be traveling. For example, you cannot take a cooler or microwave on an airplane. But keep in mind those that may well apply to your travels.