Whether it’s a weekend city break or a month-long backpacking trip, planning ahead will make managing your money that much easier.
Holidays are a time to escape and get some rest and relaxation, so to help ease the headache of preparing for a trip, the experts at NerdWallet have compiled a list of steps to consider to help make budgeting more manageable:
- Crunch the numbers
Work out when you will be going on holiday and how much time this gives you to save money. It’s also helpful to plan how much the trip is going to cost roughly including flights, accommodation, spending money, insurance, and travel.
Once you have a clear idea of how much money you’ll need and how much time you have to save, you can start budgeting each month. Working out exactly how much you can put away will depend on your monthly salary and other outgoings you need to pay.
It is useful to plan how much spending money you intend to take as well. This will help you understand where your money will be going and will hopefully avoid overspending.
- Prepaid travel money cards
Travel money cards are one way of providing a safe and convenient way to carry money abroad and help to keep on top of how much you’re spending. Simply top up the card before you go, and the money will be available to be used in whichever currency you require.
Once abroad, the cards can be used anywhere that accepts Visa or Mastercard payments. The benefit of using these over an everyday bank card is there is often an additional fee each time you use your bank card abroad, but there’s usually no added cost when using a travel card.
There are a variety of options available so it’s best to do some research to find out which best suits you. Paying close attention to all the fees involved.
- Travel during off-seasons
Off-seasons or low seasons are usually cheaper than peak seasons as they fall outside periods of high tourism. Often, there will be deals on hotels and flights to try and encourage people to travel during periods that aren’t as busy. There may also be deals and discounts in restaurants, bars, and other activities.
- Pack light
Some airlines have introduced additional baggage fees which means travelers may only be entitled to one free bag that’s big enough to fit under the seat in front of them.
The best way to avoid the additional fees is to pack light in a carry-on bag. It’s important to pack strategically if you choose to pack light, like rolling your clothes to fit more in, to ensure you get everything you need in a smaller space.
- Exchange travel money in advance
When organising travel money, pay attention to the exchange rate in order to get the best deal. This is the value of one currency for the purpose of conversion to another.
It’s best to compare as many providers as possible to find the best currency exchange rate and best travel money deal. Try to avoid airport-based currency exchange shops or kiosks as these usually charge a higher price.
- Check what’s included in the accommodation price
When booking the accommodation for your trip, make sure to compare what incentives are included in the price of the room. A lot of hotels and Airbnb’s include free wifi or breakfast in the price or may have discounted options if you book in advance.
- Public transport travel cards or passes
When deciding on which destination to visit, take into consideration the best way to get around as this could save you money on public transport. Certain cities and countries have attractions that are easily accessible by foot and others you to catch a bus, train, or taxi in order to explore.