Travel on a budget can sometimes seem hard. Most of us are tight on money and fear travel can be too expensive. Sometimes, this is true! It can be bloody expensive getting from one place to another but here are some top tips to make your money stretch a little further. This post is focuses on travelling to places, there will be other cheap tips throughout all our blogs.
I'm not saying use a kayak to get from place to place. Kayak is a website which makes it easy for the more spontaneous of us to find cheap flights to anyway. I use it and it is so simple. I put in a month that I would like to go away in and the duration of time I would like to go for and then search anywhere and see what comes up. You will be surprised by what you find. I have found flights to Grenoble for £17 and just recently to Venice for £22, BOTH WAYS. I have just checked the app right now and there are return flights to Prague on the 20th November for £17. But beware, it is not always golden and can change the dates you search without you realising, I know from experience, but that's the price we pay to keep a few bob in our pockets. So always double check the dates.
This is the main tip! I don't understand these people who snob airlines like Ryanair and Easyjet just because they are cheaper. Sure they may be a bit more crowded than other airlines but why are people so obsessed with wasting a lot of money before they even get to the destination they are meant to be enjoying. Get over having a few more people on the plane to have a few more pounds to spend on memories. Another problem people have with budget airlines is sometimes you can't get seats next to each other, but this can sometimes be a positive. Mostly likely you will end up sitting next to someone who has an interesting story to tell, I mean they are going or coming back from holiday there's one thing you can talk about already. Finally, don’t purchase add ons unless absolutely necessary. For short stays I usually just take my small case and use it has hand luggage. I can usually fit up to a weeks worth of clothes in my hand luggage case- master packer- so there is really no need for the luggage add on unless you are going for longer than that. Other add ons like priority boarding are also pretty pointless. Especially priority boarding, don’t even get me started! Its getting its own segment about how pointless and evil it is.
Don't always travel by train!
Train travel in Britain is ridiculously expensive. I mean did you see that guy who got to London by flying to Majorca, staying there for 12 hours and then flying to London for cheaper then he could get the train. Look for alternatives to train travel. My preferred mode of transport for the UK is National Express coaches, a £10 coach card saves you 33% of the fare and most of the time you make your £10 back off one journey. Sometimes coach journeys can be arduous but I very really have problems and have encountered stressful moments on trains. I am also not saying always avoid the train, sometimes it is the best option and can be cheap if booked in advance, but for the more spontaneous this isn’t always helpful.
This point is helpful abroad as well in countries like Bulgaria the buses are not only cheaper then the trains but they are faster to. We I went interrailing it took us 16 hours to get from Belgrade to Sofia, it is a 4 and a half hour drive! I will be getting the bus next time. This is also the same in countries in South America where train lines are practically non existent and when they are they are expensive and often worse kept than the buses.
It is often worth it to go to an airport further away
If you employ the tips from the point above it is the often cheaper to travel to airports further away from yourself. Often your local airport isn't the cheapest unless you live in Manchester or London, sorry I realise this is British centric, but I am sure it applies for countries all around the world. You can spend £10 on a bus to London Luton and only spend £20 on a flight, but the same flight is £70 in Newcastle. The same happened when living in Cardiff, flights to Venice from Cardiff airport were £50 but the flights from Bristol airport were £22, the bus was £8. So if you don't mind spending a little more time you can save a decent amount of money over your travels by finding the cheapest airport to fly from rather then going to the nearest airport. I save £100 flying to Hong Kong from London Gatwick rather than from Manchester, so it can be really really worth it.
Basically, what I am trying to say is when you book a holiday remember it is the destination you are going for not the travelling there. Try to save money for when you actually get there, and enjoy it!