Dreaming about getting away this year but worried you can’t afford it? Always making a travel plan but never seem to be able to stick to it? Does your bucket list just keep getting longer and longer when you’re meant to be ticking things off? We hear you and we’ve got you covered. We’re gonna give you from our own experience, 5 ways that will help you afford to travel this year.
1. Set a saving goal
This might sound obvious, but you need to know what you’re working towards if you’re ever going to get there. The way we do this is to work backwards and start with our planning first. We figure out how long we’re planning to go away for, how much our transport costs will be, how much the accommodation will cost per night, and how much spending money we need to make sure we have an awesome time. Add it all together and we’ve got our saving goal.
Doing it this way means that you’re also planning at the same time which kills two birds with one stone. And once you see all the incredible stuff you’re going to be getting up to it will make you even more determined to hit that figure - you’re providing your own inspiration! Break your saving goal down into a week by week figure and give yourself a big pat on the back every time you manage to put that amount away.
2. Commit to the cause
We find the best way to commit to saving money is to tell everyone we know that we’re saving. But we go a bit further than that and also tell them what we’re saving for and exactly how much that leaves us to spend each week. That way when we start getting peer-pressured into going for a cheeky beer or a meal out, we’ve got a ready-made excuse. Rather than getting annoyed or upset with us, we find that people actually respect the honesty as they can clearly see all the sacrifices we’re making.
When you say something out loud it makes it feel that little bit more real. So post about it on Facebook, tweet about it, shout it out of your bedroom window for all we care, just tell as many people as you can that you’re saving to travel. And once you’ve told the world that you’re going away it would be a little bit embarrassing if you don’t make it onto that plane.
3. Max out on discounts
This is an awesome way to save money without actually having to stop spending altogether. Don’t deprive yourself of the things you need and love, just use discounts to make them cheaper and put the savings straight into the piggy bank.
When we’ve been saving to travel we’ve used discounts for clothes and accessories, electricals and even our weekly food shop at the supermarket. Look out for absolutely any savings you can make no matter how small, because as the old saying goes, every little helps.
4. Stop partying so hard
Sorry to be the bearers of bad news, but waking up in the morning with an empty wallet and nothing but a headache to show for it is the easiest way to kiss goodbye to your travel dreams. We like a night out as much as the next person, but if you’re serious about this travelling stuff then you really have to cut your partying down to a minimum.
We’re not saying you have to stop enjoying yourself, just keep the spends as low as possible. That could mean inviting people round to your place for drinks in instead of a night out or even joining in for pre drinks before sneaking off home to get stuck into the latest series on Netflix.
5. Make money while you travel
Not many people realise this, but there are hundreds of different ways to make money whilst you’re actually travelling. If you’re willing to do a bit of graft then you can significantly reduce your travelling costs.
Many hostels offer travellers a free bed, and sometimes food and drink as well, for a few hours work a day. We’ve met plenty of people who afford to travel by doing this, but if it’s not for you then try and think of ways you can utilise any skills you already have. Bartending, teaching, translation services, photography and videography are all great ways to make a little bit of extra cash as you travel.
You can find more of our travel stories on our blog The Whole World Or Nothing. Why not tweet us if you loved this article or you've been to any of these places? Find us on Insta too for more wanderlust-inducing travel shots!