Saving while travelling in style

Travel is one of the most tantalising treats that life has to offer. Thanks to a mind-boggling array of modern-day transportation and tourist accommodations, there’s never a reason to say “But I can’t afford to travel in style!” Throw your ideas about stylish travelling with Dior suitcases and first-class flights out the window and look at your travel plans afresh. It’s all about the experience.

Some wise choices you make during the planning phase mean that you’ll enjoy a memorable holiday while staying at great hotels, eating delicious local food, meeting fascinating people and visiting unique attractions – all within your budget!

Here are five tried-and-true tips for the savvy traveller.

Travel in Style and Save, Tip #1: Holiday Savings Account

You might be on a budget while travelling, but wouldn’t it be absolutely amazing if you could have a few extra bucks to spend on travelling in style? It’s easy, just set up a special savings account. An automated savings agreement can automatically transfer a predetermined amount of money from your paycheck, and you can set it up on a weekly, biweekly or monthly basis. Saving on a regular basis will help you accumulate enough money to be able to afford to stay in more luxurious accommodations or purchase fancy mementos if you want.

Read: How To Make Extra Money Effectively

Travel in Style and Save, Tip #2: Put the Internet to Work for You

Thanks to modern online technology, you can reduce your travelling expenses while enjoying the best of everything. Search the web for the newest accommodations at your desired destination and you may find yourself able to stay in a four- to five-star luxury hotel at significant savings over older, established places. This is because you will find that several new hotels launch their business at low prices while providing top-of-the-line service quality. They do this to become better known as greater numbers of satisfied customers spread good reviews about their stay.

Then take it a step further on the internet and search for discount vouchers for any specific products or activities you wish to partake of at your destination. You can also search for unheard-of deals on restaurant meals or find out about “Happy Hours” near the place you’ll be staying. Sign up for Groupon near your destination or have a look through Restaurant.com for dining offers. Why pay more when you can eat at a great bargain?

Travel in Style and Save, Tip #3: Book All-in-One Packages

All-in-one packages that include travel, hotel/resort packages (even meals), tours and transport rentals can help you save a lot of money compared to plans based on many separate bookings. To take advantage of such packages, consult travel sites like Asiatravel.com or airline sites such as AirAsiaGo.com. If you are lucky enough to find a place in surroundings where shopping centres, markets, restaurants and tourist attractions are nearby and no extra transportation is required, you’re in a great position.

You can find packages including all these components except for the transportation rentals. Having all these entertainment and dining options almost under one roof will ensure you stay in style without the potentially terrible experience of cheap hotels and hostels. In addition, if you ask for upgrades you may find that they’re just one easy step away. Some hotels/resorts allow their customers to enjoy upgrade stays in higher-quality rooms until these are sold off or rented.

Travel in Style and Save, Tip #4: Save Money on your Meals

Exotic meals in foreign lands may sound exciting, but that excitement can come to an abrupt halt when you take a look at the bill. Online coupons and information can help you save money when dining at luxurious restaurants. However, it’s also necessary that you decide to curtail your meals out in restaurants. When checking into a hotel/resort room, make sure that you request a room with a refrigerator even if only a mini version is available. In most cases, you will find mini fridges anyways.

Use these to store food and fresh groceries so you can prepare at least two of your meals yourself every day. Try to eat out at lavish restaurants, bars or cafés only once a day. You can’t even imagine how much money you can save by doing this! For breakfast, stock up on cold yoghurts, milk or soft desserts (e.g. Le Rice). Cereal and milk are favoured by many people as breakfast fare. For lunch or dinner, you may choose to keep microwaveable or oven-prepped frozen meals if you don’t have the facilities to cook with fresh meats and veggies. Most resorts now offer stoves and microwaves in their rooms. If you still want to eat out at food establishments, watch out for special offers or dining hours

Try to eat out at lavish restaurants, bars or cafés only once a day. You can’t even imagine how much money you can save by doing this! For breakfast, stock up on cold yoghurts, milk or soft desserts (e.g. Le Rice). Cereal and milk are favoured by many people as breakfast fare. For lunch or dinner, you may choose to keep microwaveable or oven-prepped frozen meals if you don’t have the facilities to cook with fresh meats and veggies. Most resorts now offer stoves and microwaves in their rooms. If you still want to eat out at food establishments, watch out for special offers or dining hours where inexpensive combo meals and buy-one-get-one-free meals are available.

Travel in Style and Save, Tip #5: Free/Inexpensive Tourist Attractions

If you were the owner of a popular tourist attraction, wouldn’t you want to make the most of it and charge your visitors high entrance fees well above your overhead costs? Such a business practice illuminates why you as a tourist should restrain yourself from frequenting the must-see tourist destinations and focus on local offerings that carry lower costs. Of course, it is even better if an attraction is free!

Guided tours and daring sports activities are adored by most tourists, but remember the costs will skyrocket when capacity is limited by ever increasing aficionados, particularly during peak seasons. Aim instead to experience free attractions like the beach, the local museum, the art galleries or open-air concerts. Try to mix with the local people and gain first-hand knowledge of the culture of your destination. Remember to keep in mind that you must always respect the local residents by following their laws and customs.

Don’t forget to take lots of photos that will show off your extraordinary experiences to your social contacts online!

Related: How To Save $10,000 A Year By Making Small Changes

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C.E.O @ The New Savvy
Anna Haotanto is passionate about finance, education, women empowerment and children’s issues. Anna has been featured in CNBC, Forbes, The Straits Times, Business Insider, INC and The Peak Singapore. She was nominated and selected for FORTUNE Most Powerful Women conference in 2016 (Asia) and 2015 (San Francisco, Next Gen). Anna has 10 years of experience in the financial sector and is currently a Director in Tera Capital. Her previous work experience includes positions at Citigroup, United Overseas Bank, a regional role in Business Monitor and a boutique private equity firm based in Shanghai. She graduated from Singapore Management University (Finance and Quantitative Finance).