Buying a ticket and booking a hotel is only the first step to shelling out the big bucks. We seldom estimate the money we would toss out as our travel plan starts taking shape. Keeping those pennies in check was never so easy! You might be able to pick some more cues from my article on How To Travel To Europe in 90,000 Rupees. If you’re traveling anywhere else, use these tips to save money on the go:
1. Use your pennies in the supermarket:
Use the extra pennies you’ve been accumulating, to buy goodies such as bags of cookies or a packet of chips from the supermarket. They’re enough to fill you during a long day of travel, or take home to enjoy later. Either ways, you can’t exchange the pennies once you return home, and they have a knack for getting lost anyway!
2. Book a hotel with a shuttle service:
This way you don’t have to book one right at the city center, which could save you a lot of money. As long as they’re not too far away, you can use the shuttle service to save on transport cost. The only drawback I can think of, is that shuttle timings are fixed and may not always conform to the timings you prefer. If you’re willing to mould your plans to fit their timings, I’d say go for it! Either ways, you’ll end up hitching a ride once a day!
3. Day passes:
These passes are little doses of blessings cut out into strips of paper. Daily passes are always a great idea if you intend to travel extensively throughout the city. Most will allow you to use the metro as well as the bus on a single pass for 12 hours, for unlimited trips in the city. If you only intend to visit the theater or a short trip around the city, don’t waste your money on these. If you’re trying to cover a whole lot in a single day, you can opt for the Hop on Hop off bus tour as well.
4. Drop the luxury during your inter-city travel:
While some choose to save bucks by using trains instead of flights, there’s always the cheaper option of a bus! Inter-city travel doesn’t always have to be expensive, specially when traveling through Europe, since you’re likely to pick cities huddled tighter together, and the next stop is never too far away.
5. Overnight transport- killing two birds with one stone:
Not for the faint-hearted, but an overnight train or bus ride could save you some money on accommodation for the night, as well as some time. Only add an overnight journey is it’s a considerable distance, else you’ll find yourself sleeping at the bench on the bus stop 4 hours later, cause you arrived too soon to check-in to your accommodation for the next day. This happened with me once, and I paid a heavy price in the name of inconvenience, if you consider carting two big bags around the city with only 3 hours sleep and full day of sightseeing ahead of me, as one.
6. Business lunches:
Some cities have a concept called “business lunches” where they offer you a fixed menu to pick from, for a fixed price. Call it a buffet if you will, but business lunches are significantly cheaper and don’t offer those many options. You can take your pick from a fixed menu and fill your tummy without spending too much. This concept is quite big in Moscow and some European cities as well!
7. Shop at clearance sales:
It would be quite silly of me to advise you against splurging on presents. The joys of shopping always drag us to the malls. If you must, shop at clearance sales! There are mid-season sales, end of season sales and then the big ones: the clearance sales with 80% off! Stores in most relatively developed countries offer these from time to time and it’s the best way to shop. Massive sales go out during festival times, such as Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day and the 4th of July weekend (in the US).
8. The little things:
Fill up your water bottle at the hotel- most have water filters for their guests to use once they’ve exhausted their complimentary bottles of water; street vendors in most developed countries are a safe bet (in fact, the best bet!), pack light to avoid porterage fee, book a hotel slightly away from the main city center (to avoid the premium) but not too far away; and just walk around wherever possible- don’t get on a tram just because.