So you’ve found cheap flights to a dream destination and you’re ready to relax in the sunshine and congratulate yourself for having found such a good deal. But wait, you still need to keep to the budget and focus on getting in that tanning time!
We are by no means experts or close to being perfect at the whole saving money thing and this post definitely isn’t a list of rules….. you’ve got to live a little! However, here’s some little things that we’ve found along the way that help us to keep to a budget but still make the most of a holiday.
After all, you need to make the most of every moment but still have money spare for the adventures back home! These tricks are also true when we head off for the weekend in Scotland…… always pack those extra cereal bars!
- First of all never, ever buy the extras that airlines offer! – you’ll have a whole holiday with your friends, i’m sure you can survive a few hours sitting at opposite ends of the plane. These sneaky little tricks airlines use like separating friends unless you pay are SO annoying but there’s no need to spend your money just to avoid strangers- later on that could be your 5pm beer!
When you can download the app for most airlines now it’s also super easy to get your boarding card downloaded and avoid printing off lots of paper!
- Pack some snacks from home or buy some at the local supermarket – this might seem like it’s not making the most of a new place but sometimes you just need emergency rations. I for one suffer from severe hanger and like to keep some supplies on me at all times. These snacks fill in the gaps between meals and prevent you from making bad food decisions!
We’ve all been in that situation when you wander around hungry in a new place and end up heading into the first place you see instead of the best….
- Leading on from this – choose accommodation that has a fridge! – this opens up a whole new world of what you can buy and eat on holiday! Even if you don’t have a kitchen you can still buy all kinds of things to make tasty snacks and meals- sandwich ingredients, milk, fruit and veg….. It’s even just essential to store your beer! It might just be me but I love seeing what different things they have in supermarkets abroad – it can be a real cultural insight. I also love shopping at local markets for fresh ingredients, fruit and veg can taste so scrumptious and different when it’s not survived a flight to the UK!
Think about what food will make you happy – wait…… are these all going to be about food? But really don’t splash your cash on a meal that you could make yourself and might regret, choose the good stuff, look around and make good food choices of tasty local meals that you will look back on and drool over! Try something new….. Food for us is always a great adventure!
- Carry on Luggage – do you really need hold luggage? How much are you really going to wear while you’re away for a long weekend? Plan ahead and just pack what you really need. We are always pleasantly surprised with what we can get away with. This also means you can easily carry your luggage around if you have to and get it easily onto public transport.
You can always buy most toiletries at your destination, if you need more than 100mls. Going half on suncream with your mate when you get to your destination is always going to be cheaper than putting luggage in the hold.
- We all know this one – PRE DRINK! And pre drink some more! – alcohol is so expensive!!! Better to buy some cheap spirit or wine in the supermarket to get you on your merry way! Alcohol prices are always so much cheaper in a supermarket or off license to in a bar. Make the most of it. Or buy drinks from a supermarket and find an exotic location to drink them like on a beach or sitting on a hill with a view!
- Set a daily limit to your spending – if you think in advance about what your daily budget should be you can then only take that much out with you each day. Once it’s gone, it’s gone. Be realistic and factor in enough to have fun but this is a very easy way to keep track of the pennies and make you prioritise your spending.
- Try to work out the local transport system and avoid taxis – this is all part of learning the local culture and will allow you to see the authentic side of the country- we all have a story to tell about a time on a bus. You might drive through places you never would have seen otherwise and it’s you will get to see more of how the locals live. And it’s always cheaper….. all round winner!
There’s no need to be stingy, buy what makes you happy and don’t leave a place with regrets. However, we’re always amazed how little you really need when the sun is shining!!! Please let us know what your tips are on having a great time on budget!