Disclosure: This post is sponsored by SoFi. SoFi pays me for every referral if you click on any SoFi link and sign up for a credit card. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.
Planning to do some traveling this summer? With the high gas costs and rising hotel and airline expenses as a result of increased travel demand, traveling may be costly.
Here are some tried-and-true ways on how to save money for travel. Several methods can stretch your money when vacationing on a budget, especially during a time of inflation.
1. Save Money For Travel: Use a Travel-Friendly Credit Card
Traveling with a travel-friendly credit card is a great way to reduce travel expenses, save money and maximize your budget. Honestly you should have a travel plan in place first including a travel savings account for the entire trip.
Then have a credit card that not only helps manage your money but also won’t charge you any foreign transaction fees. SoFi Credit Card is a great option and one I highly recommend! It’s an all-around credit card that helps you save, invest, and pay down debt on an eligible SoFi loan.
- Zero foreign transaction fees
- 2% unlimited cash back
- Cashback rewards for crypto investments
- Discounts and perks from Doordash, Lyft, Hello Fresh and Shoprunner
- Complimentary $1000 of phone insurance
So, if you’re trying to save money on travel, apply for a SoFi Credit Card so you take one along with you on your travels.
2. Save Money For Travel: Travel During The Offseason
Have you heard about “high season?” Yes, it does exist!
Popular travel months like summer and the holiday season are considered the high season and the price of accommodation, tours and even food will be more expensive.
If you avoid certain times of the year, you’ll find hotels trying to fill rooms, excursions that may offer discounts to attract off-season travelers, and cheaper flights. So, try to travel during these time periods which can start from early October to late April depending on the destination.
Please do your research to find out when the peak season is for your destination so you can plan accordingly.
3. Save Money For Travel: Pack light
A packing light can save you money on checked baggage costs. However, there are a couple of different reasons you should pack light during your travels. For starters, carrying light makes it much simpler to travel around. You’ll be more agile with a piece of light luggage or backpack, allowing you to navigate public transportation rather than feeling compelled to take a cab.
So here are some ways to pack light for your trip:
- Make a travel packing list of all the things you need and want. Then cut that list in half. If you’re not sure you need an item, don’t pack it.
- Skip the laptop. Unless you absolutely need, don’t bring it since most smartphones can do almost all the things a computer can do and they take up less space. If you have tablet, bring that instead.
- Pack items that serves more than one purpose so it takes up less space
- Don’t bring all your toiletries as you can get them at your destination. When you book your hotel or Airbnb, ask beforehand if they supply toiletries like shampoo, soap and lotion.
- Pack versatile layers
- Choose clothes that are light and quick drying
- Stick with neutral colors
- Pack multipurpose footwear
4. Save Money For Travel: Bring Snacks
Take snacks to the airport and pack a few in your luggage. Food expenses can add up pretty fast especially when traveling with kids and airport food prices are ridiculously high. So save money on food by buying snacks before you head to the airport. If you sign up for a SoFi Credit Card, you can use it to shop and get 2% cashback on your food items. Just make sure you don’t go over with the snacks.
5. Save Money For Travel: Walk and Take Public Transit
Walking is the best way to get to know different parts of a new city or country you are visiting quickly. Plus you’ll save a ton of money in taxis. If you’re going a great distance, then turn to public transportation. Mass transportation is both environmentally friendly and cost-effective, particularly if traveling unaccompanied. Now if you are short on time and need a quick lift to a destination that’s a short distance then use a ride hailing service like Lyft. One of the awesome benefits of SoFi is that you can save on Lyft rides.
6. Save Money For Travel: Prioritize Free Tourist Attractions
Even trips to famous and expensive destinations such as San Francisco, NYC, and Walt Disney Domain don’t have to be exorbitantly expensive. Why? Because they have plenty of tourist attractions that are free.
Disney World has many free activities. For example, you can ride the monorail at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort or watch the fireworks from the beach. In addition, most major cities offer free walking tours (although tour guides often require tips, so please provide them appropriately).
Another option is getting city tourism cards. These cards can offer discounted or free access to major attractions and even free transportation. You do have to pay, but you save a ton of money especially if you plan to see a lot of sights in a city. I would call the local tourism office or check out their website first to see what cards are available because not every city has them.
7. Save Money For Travel: Shop At The Local Supermarkets
Visiting a local market can be an exciting experience in itself. Plus cooking your own meals is the best way to save money on food. When I was staying at an Airbnb in London, I bought a week worth of food that cost me roughly $70. So, that’s about $10 a day on food instead of the average $20 / meal eating out. I saved hundreds. Just because you’re traveling doesn’t mean you have to eat out every meal. If you have access to a kitchen, take advantage of it.
8. Save Money For Travel: Shop Around For Accommodation
Always shop around to find the prices on accommodations, preferably 1-2 months in advance. Here’s how to find cheap accommodation so you have more money in your wallet. Now your choice of accommodation will definitely depend on your destination, budget, the number of people traveling with you and the things that interests you.
- Hotel: A hotel can be a great option if you book a room with points. If you’ve accumulated a lot of travel points on your credit card, take advantage of it booking your room with points instead of cash. Another added benefit of using points is that they can unlock even more discounts and savings.
- Airbnb: This is a great way to cut costs on your travel expenses. It’s perfect if your traveling with your family. Airbnbs are usually cheaper than a hotel and they come with a kitchen so you spend less on food too. If you’re traveling with a group of friends you all can split the cost.
- Hostel: If you’re traveling to countries in let’s say Europe, Asia or South America, staying in a hostel is a great option to cut down on accommodation cost. You can find prices as low as $10 a day depending on the destination. Many people might see hostels as dorm rooms for solo travelers but that is so not true. There’s a lot of diversity. You can find private and family rooms. They are usually within walking distance of public transportation and tourist attractions if in a big city. Plus they come with wifi, kitchen facilities, laundry, luggage storage and local tours.
So here’s the bottomline. Travel costs can add very fast if you don’t plan ahead. Save money on travel by following these tips and tricks so you have more freedom on your spending. Also check out SoFi Credit Card website if you’re interested in signing up!
I hope you enjoyed these tips to save money for travel!