How do you take a vacation on a low budget? For years, I have lived vicariously watching so many YouTubers travel the world. However, my main setback was little or no budget for travel. Adulting is real. I finally figured it out, budget traveling! Here is how to plan the perfect vacation on a low budget. These tips are tested and trusted from my over 2 years of traveling. So, if you’ve yet to travel because of funds. Use these tips to plan a trip anywhere in the world on a budget.
1. Decide where you want to go
Every trip started with where? Are you planning to travel to another city in your country? I love to go on staycations a lot. First, it is less stressful. Also, it helps you see new places in your country that you’d likely not explore.
There are so many fun things you can do on your staycation. Here I have listed a few staycation ideas to make your trip fun. Since you now have an idea of where you’re going, now it’s time to plan other parts of the trip.
2. Search for deals to save cost on travel
Another tip to know on how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to search for travel vacation packages or deals.
I would recommend you check the terms and conditions of these deals though. If it is too good to be true, sometimes it may just be a scam. There are several ways to save on travel by searching for travel deals.
- Book cheap flight tickets with layovers: a few hours of layovers will save you some money. Direct flights cost more than flights with layovers. So, if you can spare a few hours, go for layovers to save on cash. Click here for some fun ideas to do on your layovers.
- Search for hotel deals too. I would recommend you use a platform like Trivago to search for hotel deals. All you need is to input your location of the visit, you will get hotel recommendations and deals.
- Search for Budget-friendly vacation packages: I love to plan my trip from start to finish. Other times, I prefer to seek out vacation packages for my destination. These vacation tours or packages make it easy for you to find travel deals on a budget.
3. Travel off-peak seasons
One of the best ways on how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to travel off-season. The cost of transportation, vacation packages, hotels, or hostel accommodations is cheaper during the low travel season.
Many tour groups give discounts and airlines are trying to get people to fill up spaces, so fares are reduced.
With the hiking cost of air travel, one of the best ways to find cheap flight tickets is to plan your travel off-season. I love to travel off-season also due to the less crowd. As a content creator, it helps to explore well and of course, take great pictures.
4. Opt for local travels
An easy to plan the best cheap vacation is to ditch international travels. There are so many things to consider while going abroad for vacation. The cost of transportation or flight tickets, exchange rate, hotel fees, COVID test, etc.
To cut costs and seek budget-friendly vacation ideas, travel locally in your country. There are so many places you explore locally or outside your city on a budget. Click here for more staycation ideas you explore for yourself. Also, staycations are another great option for the best family vacations on a budget to explore.
As a family, you could go to another city and explore. For example, you and your family could stay with a relative to explore places in their city. In this way, you cut the cost of accommodation. This is a great way on how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget.
5. Have a budget
Since you now know where you’re going, you need to have a budget as you plan a trip. Staying within budget will help you travel on a budget.
You can use platforms like Plan my trip or Google trip planner to plan your vacation. This will help you create a budget and help you determine the total cost of your travel.
The next step is to save money for your travel. I always save for my vacations to make it easy for me to travel. Click here for my tested and tried ways how to save money for travel.
6. Create a Travel Itinerary
One of the most important things to consider to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to have an itinerary. For all my trips, I always have an Itinerary. I write down the list of hotspots to see.
Also, It helps in making my travel budget too. Having an Itinerary also helps decide how to commute and connect to the places you want to explore. For example, for a 2-day trip, I make an itinerary to cover my expenses; food, transport, ticket fees, etc.
7. Opt for road trips
Ditch the flight and opt for road trips instead. Another way how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to go on road trips.
There are two main reasons I love road trips. One, it saves cost. You can choose to drive your car or get a car rental for your road trips.
Two, you get to see as many places en route to your destination. On my previous road trip to Cotonou, Republic of Benin, I got to see so many beautiful cities like Porto Novo, etc on my trip.
Also, you can choose to stop over on your way and explore a place you may find interesting on your way. This you cannot really do on air. Air travel is faster, but road trips are super fun.
Go for hotel alternatives
Another great way on how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to choose hotel alternatives instead. Sometimes, hotels can be a pricey option when it comes to vacation rental packages.
Although there are times you get hotel travel deals at cheaper rates using platforms like Trivago. This is a platform I would recommend to anyone who loves to stay at hotels. However, there are several hotel alternatives to opt for.
- Hostels: One of my best way to cut cost on travel accommodation costs is to go to hostels. Plus you get to meet and network with fellow travelers on your trip. This is a great option for solo travelers. Also, it is quite cheaper compared to hotels. Click here to book a hostel from Hostel world for your next trip.
- Academic Guest houses: This is a perfect option if you’re visiting a place close to a university.
- Couch Surfing: It is a great way to remove the cost of accommodation by staying over for free with a host. There are several hosts on the couch surfing platforms you can reach out to. These people are like-minded travelers who don’t mind hosting you throughout your stay. However, you need to reach out to the host, and if accepted, you can stay with them while on your trip.
- House sitting or Pet sitting. Click here for other hotel alternatives you can explore on your travel.
Resist the urge to want to shop for any and everything. I love to shop for souvenirs or clothes while on my vacation. This in itself is not bad, if you have extra cash to splurge.
However, if you’re traveling on a budget, only pay or buy necessities. Spend money on commuting, if possible opt for free sightseeing, pay for food, etc. Only buy what you need on your trip to allow you to travel on a budget.
Opt for the cheapest means of transport
On my recent visit to Benin republic, I took more of bikes instead of cabs. This helped me in reducing the cost of commuting while exploring the city.
A great way on how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to opt for the cheapest means of transport. Opt for a tuk-tuk instead of taking a taxi to help you reduce the cost of travel. Also, you can take public trains or buses to help you commute while you explore the city.
Tuk-tuk rides are very common in Asian countries. If you’d prefer to book private tuk-tuk rides, click here to book it for your next trip.
Eating out in restaurants on your trip can be expensive. One great to plan the best cheap vacations is to eat from the local food stores.
The fun part of traveling is trying out new dishes. You get to enjoy this when you eat with the locals. If you’re unsure of what to eat, ask the locals for recommendations. They will surely suggest their best dish for you.
If you’re planning to go on a vacation on a budget, ditch the restaurants and opt to eat out with the locals.
Take part in Free activities.
Another great way how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to opt for free activities. If you search, you will definitely find budget-friendly vacation ideas for your trip.
During my research, while planning my trip to Cotonou, I discovered fidjrosse beach. This beach is free to access to locals and tourists alike.
The beach is my happy place and I look forward to spending time there. So, I am always seeking places with beaches to explore. I always pack ready to visit the beach on my vacations. You can check my post on what to wear to the beach for inspiration.
So, for a budget-friendly trip, look out for free activities you can do on your trip. This will help you cut costs while you enjoy your vacation on a budget.
Earn Cashback on your trip
Another great option how to plan the perfect vacation on a budget is to earn cash back on the cost of your trip. One of the best platforms I would recommend is WayAway. Click here to Sign up for WayAway membership.
You get to enjoy cashback on your flights, hotel, and insurance packages. Also, you can sign up for price drop alerts to get cheap vacation deals, and use WayAway at check out to earn cash back on money spent. It is perfect whether you’re planning a solo trip or the best family vacation on a budget.