Travel

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The decision to take a year out from your studies or to put your career on hold in order to go travelling is an exciting one – but it can also be expensive! In fact, a lot of students and young professionals cite prohibitive costs as the reason why they worry that a world trip might be out of their reach.

My first travels to the states gave me some friends and memories that will last a lifetime but it would never have happened if I hadn’t put in the hard work to saving to save enough for my flights, food and accommodation out there.

Worried that a year of travel is too expensive for your pocketbook? Stop worrying and start saving! Here are ten savvy tips that can help to make your travel dreams a reality faster than you ever dreamt possible

1. Set a Budget and Date!

It’s time to stop dreaming and start planning! Getting a date in the diary will motivate you to start saving and setting the budget early on will inform you of how much you will need to save each week/month to set off on your travels

The costs of different countries and regions can vary wildly, so consider spending the bulk of your time in more affordable parts of the world. Your precious pounds will stretch further in India than in Iceland! Here is a great guide for how much money you will need for your travels.

2. Get Frugal

So much of your money ends up in the trash in the form of wasted food. Only buy what you need, and try to use everything in your fridge before it goes to waste.

The freezer and the stockpot are your best friends! Buy a thermos or flask for your teaTea bags quite literally cost pennies but a cup of tea at a café can cost you pounds! Take your own hot drink with you in the morning and save heaps throughout the year.

3. Take on Freelance Work

Do you have a talent for proofreading, social media or digital design? Try PeoplePerHour or similar websites such as Upwork. Even if you just rake the leaves from neighbours’ yards – every penny counts!

4. Have a Wild Night….In!

Having a fun night in with your mates can be just as satisfying as a night out, and it will be infinitely cheaper. Try making exotic cocktails, having a sushi making party or watching some great films with craft beer.

5. Give Up Smoking

Smoking can cost up to almost £3500 a year if you are spending between £9-£10 a day on cigarettes. That is a saving of nearly £300 per month that you could instantly add to travelling funds.

If giving up smoking seems almost impossible to you, consider trying Smoko electronic cigarettes to help you in the process of giving up smoking. Other products that you could try include a Nicorette patch, vaporizer, tablets, lozenges, gum and even nasal spray. What are you waiting for?

6. Have a Car Boot Sale

Your closets and drawers are probably packed full of great articles that may not make you happy any longer but are still in good shape. Sell your gently used clothing, shoes and household goods at a car boot – or even on ebay, Gumtree or Craigslist.

7. Save Your Pennies

And your shrapnel! Set up a piggy bank and empty your pockets every night. You’ll be amazing how quickly your pocket change adds up.

8. Make Your Lunch Exciting!

Bringing a packed lunch can be monotonous and boring but oh so affordable! In order to keep your stomach and your wallet happy, ensure that your lunch is delicious and fun. Bring leftovers of yummy dinners, make interesting sandwiches and never stop experimenting!

9. Hit the Road

Cycling and walking are not just good for you, they are also good for your bank account. Bypass the car, busses, taxis and tube – you can save at least 50 pounds a month by getting around town this way.

10. Shop the Sales

Try having a look at websites and circulars to determine which grocery stores have your favourites on sale – you can save tons of money each month by buying in bulk (but just make sure you don’t waste any!).

These are just a few great ideas to help you on the way to a trip of a lifetime. Do you have any ideas to add? Have your say in the comment section below.

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bristol castle

Our anniversary was getting closer so Joe & I wanted to treat ourselves to a long weekend exploring somewhere neither of us had been together before. We started searching last minute holiday deals for the perfect romantic destination, but such holidays are only so affordable if you are willing to go mid-week – not an option! After some careful calculations we estimated it was probably going to cost us around £600 for two nights in Rome, this wasn’t feasible if we were going to stick to our new-found budget plans.

So England it was!

We spent 4 nights before departure planning a road trip around South-West England and managed to draw up a schedule jam packed with three exciting new cities to explore and fun things to do.

Bristol – Just £26.60!
First stop on the road trip was Bristol, where we explored Blaise Castle and its beautiful grounds. The best thing about visiting Bristol is that there’s plenty of things for us to do on a budget! We had researched Blaise castle before we left home and found that it was totally FREE to visit, our only cost was lunch! We could of easily spent longer here exploring the grounds but the heavens opened and we decided it was best to move on. The afternoon took us into Bristol’s busy city centre. A friend had told us about an indoor crazy golf course called Jungle Rumble which was the perfect treat for a wet afternoon. As we’d saved money in the morning we decided to play a few holes!

Bath – £107.60 (inc our anniversary dinner and accommodation)

Bath photoWe arrived in a rather drizzly Bath in very much need of dinner! So after checking into our Travelodge and feeding the ever hungry parking meter we came across a Thai Tapas restaurant. I’d never really tried Thai food so I was intrigued and tapas is a great way to try new food as you can pick a selection and what you don’t like you can leave for your partner! – Who wraps bacon around mussels anyway!? The next morning we made the most of the morning sun and went to see the Abbey and Roman Baths. I was really keen to see the Roman Baths but was rather let down when we saw it was £11 each to walk around them – peeking over the walls would have to do! It did seem that everything in Bath came at a price, we were put off the magnificent Abbey and the garden grounds due to costs. But we were still able to enjoy the beautiful views of Bath just walking through the streets. I would definitely recommend visiting Bath, but perhaps not for the budget traveler.

Bournemouth – £95.91 (inc accommodation and three meals out!)

BournemouthBournemouth was our final stop and we had plenty of time to enjoy the sights. We checked into an impressive Spa Hotel that was actually cheaper than our Travelodge in Bath! The sun broke through the clouds just in time for lunch, so we set out along the beach front to find some classic seaside grub – fish and chips of course! We spent most of our time in Bournemouth walking along the beach, playing on the penny machines at the arcade and drinking tea at various cafe stops along the promenade!

So how much did it cost?

Our last minute budget road trip came to a grand total of £337.06!! Almost half the price of a city break in Rome!

The Budget Breakdown.

  • Food – £154.51
  • Accommodation – £88.00
  • Travel – £60.50
  • Attractions – £19.20
  • Parking – £13.10

Our Tips for Budget Travels

  • Pre-Planning – the best thing you can do before setting out to explore a new city is to Google it! Its amazing what you’ll find – we definitely wouldn’t have found Blaise castle if we hadn’t of done our research.
  • Set a budget – When you set aside a budget for a trip its much easier to stick to low costs when planning which attractions to visit. Its always nice when you have money in the pot left over from a trip too!!
  • Keep a money log – We found it very useful to note down what we were spending as we went along that way we were sure about how much we had left to spend to enjoy the rest of our trip.

Experienced travellers, do you have any tips for travelling on a budget? We’d love to hear your suggestions!

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