Want to enjoy your next vacation without spending a huge amount of money? Here some good and simple tips to organize your thrifty holidays and become a more sustainable traveler.
Going on a vacation can often be a double-edged sword. While this is probably your favorite time of the year (no work and all play!), it can drain your savings and leave you with an empty bank account. However, fun vacations do not always have to break the bank. In fact, with some clever tips, you can organize an amazing trip and save money along the way. Here are several ways you can plan thrifty holidays.
1. Commuting more sustainably
Generally traveling by train is the most sustainable (and inexpensive) way to commute. In the case you have decided to drive to your destination, make sure to do a maintenance checkup on your car before you hit the road. This way you will be able to minimize fuel usage and maximize your safety. For example, low tire pressure can increase fuel consumption.
2. Book accommodation away from the city center
Since hotels at the centers of major cities are close to all the attractions, they often charge more for their rooms. A train or bus ticket plus a room in an eco-friendly Airbnb or hostel that is away from the city center will cost you much less than a fancy room in the center, so you can save a significant amount of money on your hotel bill. If you wish to save even more, consider looking at smaller towns or villages outside the city.
3. Consider staying in a hostel
Hostels offer fewer luxuries but they also cost far less than hotels. If you are not very keen on your privacy and you don’t mind sharing a room with a couple of strangers, booking a room in a hostel might be perfect for you. In case you are traveling with a group of friends, even better. You can all share that one large room with ten beds and save some money.
4. Plan more activities in nature
If you are a fan of winter sports, there are so many fun and outdoor activities that do not cost a lot. During the season most towns have festivals and museums that offer free admission. To save on your bar bill, you should avoid expensive import liquors and opt for local microbrews.
5. Do your own shopping and cooking
In case you will be staying in a vacation apartment or your hotel room has a kitchen, you can save a lot of money by doing your own grocery shopping and cooking at home. Even if you just prepare one meal a day you can significantly cut your costs, and by buying snacks at the supermarket and staying away from the minibar you can take an even bigger load off your budget.
6. Take the leftovers
In case you have a fridge in your room, do not hesitate to ask the waiter to wrap up your leftovers so you can take them with you; today’s leftovers might become tomorrow’s free lunch. It’s highly recommendable to BYO containers and reusables with you to avoid any kind of single-use throw-away packaging.
7. Ask locals for recommendations
Locals surely know the best places where you can have a good meal that doesn’t cost a lot so ask them to recommend restaurants and bars and the hidden gems. In case you don’t speak the same language, simply download a translator app before you leave your room.
8. Don’t buy a travel guide
In this day and age when every possible information you might need is online, there is really no need to spend your money on local maps and travel guides. Instead, download some travel apps and you will be good to go. If you cannot live without one, go to a second-hand shop as usually, shelves are full of these!
9. Choose your souvenirs carefully
Do you really want to buy that seashell bracelet that you will never wear or that colorful scarf that doesn’t really go with anything you own? When you are looking for souvenirs, make sure you will get something you really love or an item you will actually use. The other question you may want to ask – is it eco-friendly and ethically made? Is it supporting the local community?
10. Join a community program or beach clean-up
This can be a really good way to meet new people aligned with the same values while feeling fulfilled by doing something good during your holidays. It will also allow you to meet more locals as well as the issues and problems of the communities in that area.
These are just some of the tricks you can use to plan thrifty holidays. With good organization and clever strategies, your holiday trip won’t leave you broke while you become a little bit more sustainable along the way.
Are there any tips for sustainable and thrifty travel you’d like to share with us? Please comment below!