It’s entirely possible, you know… your dream trip.
That trip you’ve daydreamed about for years? That imaginary around the world flight path you’ve had in your head or pinned to your wall all this time.
Or perhaps you’ve got that one spectacular destination at the forefront of your mind?
Well, it’s all possible. You can go.
No, you don’t have to be rich and I’m not going to try and sell you some magical course that teaches you how to save money for traveling. This is all you.
With just a little change in mindset and some saving techniques, your dream trip can very quickly become real.
In this post, we’re going to explore 25 different ways you can put into action right now to start saving for your dream trip.
Table of Contents
1. Start Cutting Expenses (Before Your Trip)
Before doing any trip, the first thing to do is sit down, and figure out everything you spend money on right now to assess whether you actually need it or not.
A lot of things you may still need in the lead up to your trip, but chances are you’ll be surprised how much you can cut.
Your list should include everything from; Rent costs, bills, food, transport, subscriptions, activities and anything else that comes out of your bank account regularly.
2. End Any Subscriptions (That You Won’t Need)
This is a super important one and something that has caught me out way too often on long trips.
I once went to Australia for 6 months and paid for an unused mobile plan the entire time.
£40 per month for 6 months, resulting in £240 draining slowly out of my account, without me even realising.
Please don’t make such a rookie error like this, it really is such a waste.
Be sure to cut ruthlessly;
- Phone bills
- Sports Streaming Services
- Gym Memberships
- Any other recurring payment
These will all eat away at your savings constantly.
3. Ask - Do I Really Need This?
Using the list of expenses you’ve made, ask yourself what you actually NEED.
This is different to something that’s; Nice or just handy to have. (That’s a want).
Be super strict with what you cut out of your expenditure list.
You’re going to want to maintain your lifestyle somewhat but remember, it’s only for a short time and becoming a bit more of a minimalist could actually be good for you.
I know it’s helped me let go of a lot of useless things.
4. Get A Travel Savings Account
From when I first started going on trips at 16 years old. I’ve always had two separate bank accounts.
My day to day current account and my savings account. I still do this now and could never just have one account!
Every time you get paid, try to put 20-25% (or more) of your income into the savings account.
For example, you receive a paycheck for $800, put $200 straight away into your travel savings account. Then live off the rest!
In addition to this, anytime you have any spare cash (after paying for essentials) stick it straight into your savings account.
5. Skip The Coffee & Avoid Alcohol
This is a massive one and is actually pretty hard to avoid.
If you live a great social life, this one only becomes more difficult.
By starting to practise being a little frugal with it, you can still enjoy the two. Just compare the costs of consuming at home to going to a cafe or bar. It’s still the same drink, with significantly less cost.
Instead of going to the cafe, invite a friend over for a coffee at home or have drinks at someone’s house before going out. It’s crazy how much this can save you over the course of 6 months.
You can even keep track of this and put the price of a coffee into your savings account every time you manage to say no to having one out.
6. Research Destinations Thoroughly
Before going on a trip, do a tonne of research. If you’ve got a dream trip in mind, chances are you’ve researched it to death anyway!
However, it’s super easy to write down places you want to go and look at all the amazing photos, but proper research requires crunching the numbers.
Find out the exact (realistic) costs of each place you wish to visit. This is; Accommodation, food, transport, activity costs and any other costs such as visas and entry fees.
It’s awesome to head on a trip knowing the costs of everything already and having enough savings to cover any emergencies and unexpected costs.
7. Check Different Countries Vacation Periods & Public Holidays
This is a sneaky one that’s caught me out once or twice when travelling.
Checking the public holidays and vacation periods throughout the year of any countries you plan to visit is very handy to know, especially if you’re planning to travel multiple countries over a long period.
Prices for flights, transport and accommodation increase dramatically on public holidays. This is true the world over.
Whether it’s school holidays, national events or religious occasions, be sure to know of it before booking anything.
I once flew from Bali to Sumatra in Indonesia on a Muslim holiday and ended up paying 3 times the amount of the usual cost. All because I didn’t know of the holiday until someone informed me on the flight. Sh*t – That’s why I paid $300 for this flight (facepalm).
Don’t make this unnecessary mistake.
8. Plan & Budget Your Trip
After you’ve crunched the numbers when researching your trip, you should then try to match this with your budget.
Add up all the trip expenditures and work out a daily and weekly cost.
This will mean you know exactly how much you need to save and help you work towards your savings goal.
9. Ask Yourself - What Sort Of Traveling Do You Want To Do?
Establishing what sort of trip and what sort of traveller you want to be is going to massively affect how much you need to save.
How are you going to afford your travel? Are you going to be heading on a budget trip, travel comfortably or in luxury?
The daily budget for each is going to be drastically different. So be sure to take this into account as you plan and budget.
10. Set A Saving Goal
After budgeting the exact amount your trip will cost and getting an accurate daily expenditure figure, set some clear savings goals.
For example, if you want to go find a way to save for a trip in 6 months time, set a savings goal for the end of every month in the lead-up.
Say the goal is around $10,000
Try and save at least $1500 per month for 6 months.
11. Book Cheap (But Not The Cheapest Flights)
However, as tempting as it is to click on the cheapest option (at the top of the Skyscanner page) these flights are often very long with massive layovers with the poorest rated airlines.
Don’t get me wrong, I love scoring a cheap flight and still fly with some of these airlines. But when you add up the costs the extras these cheap airlines add on, you sometimes end up paying more than the more expensive flight.
12. Use a Small Change Investment App (Such As Plum or MoneyBox)
This is new for me and something now I find really handy.
I’m all for having different ways to save and having money working in the background through using a small change investment app is a fantastic saving option.
Every time you tap your bank card, these apps will round up to the nearest dollar (or whatever you set it to) and invest it into a portfolio of your choice.
This will just be saving for you in the background and you’ll not even notice it, just check it every few weeks or months and use the money for travel, or keep on investing!
13. Sell Anything You Won’t Need
If you’ve been living in the same place for a while, you’ll likely have a tonne of stuff you don’t need.
This accumulation of stuff can be turned into cash to go into your savings account because, to be honest, how much of it is useless?
What can you sell that you don’t need and definitely won’t be taking away with you?
14. Get an Online Side Hustle Job
With remote work looking like the future for a lot of careers, why not start some online work to do in addition to your current role?
For example, you could; Start a dropshipping business, become a writer or the easiest one, learn how to teach English online.
These jobs are great extra income sources and being online, you can even work while you’re travelling.
15. Ask - What Do You Really Want To See & Do?
When heading to a new place it’s easy to get caught up in the hype and visit all the major tourist sites?
However, it’s important to ask – What do YOU actually want to see?
Some major tourist attractions are super expensive and often don’t live up to the hype.
Pick a few personal ‘must dos’ and drop anything you don’t really care about.
16. Enjoy Free Activities
Both before your trip and during, learn how to enjoy free things.
There’re so many beautiful places in the world that don’t cost anything to visit.
Try to get in the habit of mostly doing free activities then treating yourself to some paid ones.
17. Long Term Rentals
18. Share Everything!
Are you going to be travelling with friends or in a group?
A great way to save money while travelling is to split the costs of everything with other people.
Even if you’re a solo traveller try and plan your travel with the people you meet on the road.
Got an Airbnb rental? Split that between everyone. Need to go to the airport? Share a taxi.
Sharing everything can end up dramatically reducing travel expenditures.
19. Avoid Cars!
Cars are super expensive to run!
This is true both if you have a car at home or you plan to buy/hire one at your destination.
When you own a car, the list of potential things going wrong is huge!
All of which costs a lot of money (I am convinced, mechanics just throw out random numbers sometimes).
If you can utilize walking and public transport (both in the lead up to your trip and during it), you’re saving massive amounts of cash on fuel, which can be better used by going straight into your travel savings account.
20. Get a Credit Card
This is something I have only started doing recently, but having a credit card is a great way to save for travelling.
Many credit cards offer points when you spend, which then be exchanged for airline miles. This is super handy and can build up every time you tap your card.
Some credit cards offer bonus points when you spend a certain amount in the first few months, which is actually surprisingly easy to meet when you have outgoing costs anyway.
This is what’s known as travel hacking in the travel industry.
Although credit cards can seem daunting if you’ve never had one before, the benefits are huge if you stay on top of things and pay them off in full every month.
21. Sign Up for Any Loyalty Programmes
Many big businesses offer loyalty programmes, where you can earn points in exchange for discounts.
If you regularly shop at a supermarket that offers such a programme, it’s well worth taking a few minutes to sign up and swipe your loyalty card when you shop.
Although discounts may seem minimal, over a long period of time they can add up surprisingly high.
22. Diversify Your Income Portfolio
This is a new concept for me but is actually a fantastic way not only to save for travelling but to ensure you always have money to fall back on.
I started learning about this as I started getting sick of returning from trips with zero dollars in my bank account and having to build myself back up again.
Diversifying your portfolio means spreading your money across a few different areas rather than having it all in one account.
A good way to diversifying your portfolio completely would be to split your total savings into 4 parts. Then put each 25% of the total into different investments.
- 25% in your bank
- 25 % in Stocks/Shares
- 25 % in Crytpo Currency
- 25% in Gold/Silver
You don’t have to do it this way (and by no means am I a financial advisor) but having your total savings spread around multiple assets protects you against inflation and can even increase your savings through compound interest over time.
24. Question Everything - But Still Have Fun
Before leaving on a trip, ALWAYS ask yourself do I need to do this or can I save that money for travel?
You obviously don’t want to sacrifice everything, still have that coffee, but do it at home and go for that evening out, but have a few drinks beforehand.
You can still have plenty of fun without spending cash on fancy cocktails and meals out!
25. Use The Power of The Internet
The internet is absolutely amazing and when used for travelling is the best thing ever.
With enough will and brainpower, you can do literally anything for free on the internet.
So there really is no need to be paying for things that you can just do using Google?
For example for your entertainment, there are enough videos and on Youtube to last a lifetime.
And for learning new skills, and working online there is an infinite amount of blog posts and articles on pretty much any topic you want to learn about.
What’s more, is you can do this from wherever you are in the world.
Summary of Saving Money For Traveling
To summarise this post, I would like to disclose that I’m not a financial advisor and whether you choose to follow my advice or not is completely up to you.
These are just things I do so I can travel full time.
So I hope some of these tips have helped and you can now start using them to save for your trip.
Please let me know in the comments of any tips that have helped or if you know of any other ways to save money for travel?
In the meantime,
Happy saving and happy travelling.