Ten Things You’ve Always Wanted to Ask About Budget Traveling But was Afraid to
A post on budget traveling that should get you to book that plane ticket – NOW!
1. Travel light…so you don’t have to pay the baggage allowance fee! As much as possible, don’t check-in anything. Save that 500 bucks on a food trip where it’s worth it! It’s more convenient to bring a backpack or a small trolley when you travel anyway. Plus, you won’t waste time waiting for your bag to show up at the baggage carousel. Only bring the essentials. Some people tend to bring huge and heavy towels when really, a small one will do. Some hostels even have towels for rent; some even provide it for free…if you’re lucky.
2. Sleep at dorm-type accommodations. I’m pretty sure you’ve read this in every backpacking website, but you’ve never actually tried it because ADMIT IT, you’re scared. I’m not gonna lie, there really are pretty badly-maintained guesthouses. To make sure you book the right hostel, check out the reviews on the internet (ie, hostelworld.com).
BONUS TRICK! If you’re gutsy enough, you can book a cheap budget airline that’ll reach your destination at a late hour so you can spend the night at the airport. However, you need to be 100% mentally and physically prepared for that!
3. Learn the secret of seat sales. They can be tricky. Observe. Anticipate. Grab!
4. Research, research, research. There are so many activities you can do for free. For those that require a little cash, spend yours wisely. Plan your itinerary only with activities you want to do. Skip the museums if you’re not fond of going in them; don’t pay for a view on the 60th floor of a building if you’re afraid of heights (at the same time though, it’s nice to try something scary and challenging when you’re backpacking). Bottom line: prioritize.
5. Read travel guides in advance. Read about the place’s history so you don’t have to hire tourist guides who will probably ask for money in exchange of their services. You can get so many ideas from travel books too, although I’ve never actually bought one myself. I usually just spend days reading them at Fully Booked before I fly because—it’s free! (Refer to photo above :p) And what’s even better is that so many websites nowadays are dedicated to traveling that it has become easier to get information on eany city you want to visit.
6. Resist the urge to take taxis. Opt for cheaper modes of transportation when going to farther places—sleeper trains, overnight buses, etc. I know people easily get stressed out over getting lost, and will settle for a taxi, hoping it’ll take them to the place they want to go to. Taxis don’t come cheap, regardless of where you are in the world, and that’s why you should…
7. Invest on a map. This is one of the most important things in budget traveling, especially for you backpacker-wannabes who are bad with directions. Make sure you know how to read one though. If not, insert “Invest Time on Learning How to Read a Map” before this part. It really helps.
8. Wear comfortable shoes and clothes. Walking saves a lot of money, I tell you. Don’t wear four-inch heels if you plan sightseeing on foot—common sense, right? I’m not saying you can’t be fashionable while backpacking but if you can’t stand not wearing short skirts and stilettos on a trip then this article isn’t for you.
9. Get friendly with the locals and fellow backpackers. If you get friendly with them and if, with luck, they become amicable as well, you may just get yourself free meals/passes/etc! IT WORKS EVERY SINGLE TIME. Make friends, especially when you’re traveling solo. Some fees are much cheaper when you share it with someone. It’s actually quite easy to spot lonely travelwhores like me.
10. Don’t forget to bring your guts. Without it, you can’t use anything enumerated in this post.