Budget Travel 101: How to Travel Often

Travelling can be expensive, there is no doubt about that. When you start looking at flight prices and hotel rooms it really seems a bit out of reach. There are many ways to save money for travel. Here are some ways that I have managed to travel often over the last year or so…

Travel in Off Season (Shoulder season)

Usually flights are cheaper. The weather may not be ideal at the time. Attractions may be cheaper, car rentals, hotel and hostels prices may even be lower at this time. Shoulder seasons are usually April/May and September/October depending on where you go.

Use google flights or skyscanner.

Both of these can track prices for your flights. Google flights puts out suggestions for saving money suggesting that if you fly out a day later or earlier you can save X amount. Skyscanner shows you all your options, length of trip vs price etc, both are really useful apps.

Stay at Hostels.

People automatically think of hostels as disgusting, dirty places that you don’t want to stay in. In actual fact they couldn’t be more wrong. I stayed in a few hostels in New Zealand that cost $20USD per night. They varied from 4 bed dorm with a private shower to 6 bed dorm with communal showers. All of these places were clean and well kept with pleasant and helpful staff. Bonus if you’re a solo traveller, hostels are a great way to meet new people so you have company on your adventures! Sure you may have a bad experience here and there at some hostels. Someone got a little too drunk the night before or people coming in at 4am after a party. Don’t let these little things ruin the fact that you’re on an epic trip and maybe the next place will be better!

Use Public Transport

One of the best things ever was booking a 10hour bus ride to Wellington for $1, one of the worst was booking a 10 hour bus ride! I booked ahead because I knew my plans but if you have the time the long bus rides will almost always be cheaper than a flight. Bonus, you get the experience more of the scenery this way. I used the Naked Bus in New Zealand and there were chargers and wifi, it was really quite comfortable.

Travel Light

More and more airlines are now charging you to carry one peice of luggage with you. Sure $25 US doesn’t seem bad at first but that’s  only one way. So that is $50 you could have spent on an experience out or a few nights accomodation in a hostel. All those travel fees add up! So get a good carry-on bag and learn to pack light. It does take some practice but you get the hang of it. Check out some of the biggest packing mistakes and my Osprey Sirrus 36L backpack.

Travel to more affordable countries

Ok so maybe the plane ticket may be a bit more expensive to get there, but accomodation, transport and food will be way cheaper. Places like South East Asia, India and Nepal, and countries in South and Central America, even South Africa are cheap places to travel.

There are other options as well. You can work abroad on a holiday visa or join a WWOOF program where you work for your room and board.You can also teach english abroad. Couchsurfing is an option as well, I haven’t personally used it but I have met up with a couple of couchsurfers who were quite cool. Use with caution though, if something doesn’t feel right then don’t stay with someone just because it’s free.

I hope some of these tips encourage you to start exploring this beautiful world! You can check out this post about how to be a nomad if you want to travel full time. Book that ticket and go on your adventure.



  • Jaye Shields September 17, 2016 at 6:29 pm

    Great post! I get to travel pretty cheap because I’m a flight attendant so airfare is free, but I still hav to travel on a budget as far as accommodation, ect. I usually stay in hostels, airbnb or couch surf! Great post.

  • Abbi September 17, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Great tips to save money travelling – I have done all of these, and being able to travel for longer is definitely worth a couple of nights in cheap beds! Great post 🙂

  • Jillian Michelle October 5, 2016 at 8:13 pm

    This is such an informative article! I use public transport often, but it can be such a pain in the butt sometimes lol. I love hostels, though! And I’ve been dying to try out WWOOF-ing in Ireland! Hopefully soon! <3

  • Maggie October 5, 2016 at 11:03 pm

    Awesome tips! So many people think you have to be rich to travel frequently. I actually just got a FB message from a friend pretty much assuming we must be rich to travel pretty much every month with our daughter! I should send her this link because this is exactly how we travel so often!

    • Stace October 6, 2016 at 10:23 am

      Ughhh I know! I get so sick of people assuming I must be rich to travel which is why i wrote this!

  • Arnav @ Eat, Travel, Live and REPEAT October 6, 2016 at 3:08 am

    Great post and to the point ! I am a budget traveler myself and I scan all the websites for the cheapest possible deals and couple it up with promo codes.In India a lot of websites have introduced cashbacks as well so it turns out to be a win win. Haven’t stayed in a hostel yet but i will definitely do so in my next trip.

  • Allison October 6, 2016 at 3:37 am

    Lots of great tips here! I seriously love Skyscanner. I just scored two return tix from Sydney to Ho Chi Minh for $1100, around $900 cheaper than I have ever seen it. The only thing I won’t do anymore is stay in hostels lol

    • Stace October 6, 2016 at 10:24 am

      Fair enough re hostels. Sometimes you get sick of being around people constantly LOL

  • JM October 6, 2016 at 11:18 am

    Totally agree with your list but never tried staying in a hostel before but i would not think twice to do in the future when i travel alone. Thanks for sharing.

  • Rashmi and Chalukya October 6, 2016 at 12:58 pm

    Great Post! You have some great and amazing tips. Travelling off season and using public transport really does matter.

  • Erica October 6, 2016 at 3:18 pm

    Love this. Everyone thinks travel has to be so expensive, when in fact it can be fairly cheap if you don’t have to have a luxury experience. I much rather travel more often and for longer than have one short luxury vacation. If I wasn’t bringing my toddler with me I would stay in hostels!

  • Sabrina October 6, 2016 at 10:22 pm

    Great topic! You also get asked this question millions time? I do! and that’s why I wrote something very similar a couple of months ago. People think is magic (or that we are really rich!) when in fact is just about being smart 😉

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  • Sophie January 2, 2017 at 11:11 pm

    Great tips! I love using Skyscanner. I am about to get over to Asia for a month soon, so I’ll definitely be packing light – it sounds so much easier 🙂


  • Only By Land January 18, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    I read all of your tips and you travel exactly the same way I do! I prefer to go the land route than fly! I have taken bus routes that take more than 30 hours! I too appreciate the phone chargers and WiFi. I need a personal trainer whilst traveling too!

  • Jenni January 18, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    Some great tips here I tend to pack light now so only have hand luggage I really want to try hostels but not yet got the courage up I like my own space lol

    • Stace January 18, 2017 at 5:38 pm

      I loved the hostels in New Zealand but I do like my own space as well. Depending on the trip I’d opt for a private room sometimes

  • Daisy - DaisLikeThese January 18, 2017 at 5:42 pm

    Some great tips. I definitely use google flights but unfortunately can’t really travel off season with kids (so annoying!).
    Thanks for sharing your tips.

  • melbtravel January 18, 2017 at 6:00 pm

    You have some good tips there. You are so correct, using public transport is definitely a great way to save money. I use to catch cab but ever since I finished working in the office, I am more careful with my funds.

  • Naomi January 18, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    I love to save my money so I can use it for travel. Anywhere I can go that is cheap and where I can explore new things is good to me. So great tips, it really all helps to travel more often

  • Jen Morrow January 19, 2017 at 10:18 am

    These are great tips, especially for budget travelers. I travel off-season for better deals, as well as avoiding crowds.

  • Katie January 19, 2017 at 4:42 pm

    These are some great tips for saving money on your travels! I have found our biggest expensive is always flights and accommodation but by flying in the off season we save so much! As a couple we prefer to stay in private rooms but these can be found on a budget too!

    • Stace January 20, 2017 at 8:25 am

      Yes for our next trip together we will be in private rooms!

  • Jean January 19, 2017 at 6:52 pm

    Good points. Travel really is affordable. It’s just managing your expectations of what you want to do and how you want to spend your money.

  • Agness of eTramping February 12, 2017 at 8:06 pm

    Definitely some great tips! I know I’ve made use of some of these.


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