12 thrifty travel tips for every holidaymaker

Holidays can be expensive, but there are ways to cut costs without cutting corners on your experience.

Want to shave a few pennies off your next vacation?

Here’s how you can do it, without missing any of the sights, or feeling like you’re scrimping the whole time you’re away:

1. Travel off-peak

It’s a bit of a no-brainer, but if you don’t absolutely have to, it’s wiser to book your trip outside of school holiday dates, and during off-seasons. Your destination will be cheaper – and quieter!

2. Swap your hotel for a B&B (or Airbnb)

Hotels might feel super luxurious, but cheaper options like B&Bs can be more homely, while booking an Airbnb often means you end up in cheaper residential areas with more charm. Plus, Airbnb renters tend to leave food and drink supplies and off-the-beaten-track trip ideas.

3. Stay with family

Always meant to look up that cousin in Canada? Or your sister has been begging you to visit her in Australia? Combine holidaying with family visits and save on food and accommodation.

4. Take the bus

It’s cheaper than travelling by rail, and the views can be just as stunning.

5. Consider sightseeing passes

Instead of paying for one off entry to museums and attractions, look into booking passes that get you into multiple locations at a discount.

6. Pay in cash

Withdrawing cash from ATM machines gets you a good rate, and just a single withdrawal charge, whereas paying by card in restaurants and shops will incur you higher charge rates every time you use the plastic.

7. Don’t pay for the hotel breakfast

If you are staying in a hotel, often you will be charged extra for breakfast, but why rely on the hotel for your morning grub? A croissant from a family run café will be a tastier and thriftier option.

8. Make the most of freebies

If breakfast is included, think about snaffling some rolls and fruit to save for lunch later on in the day…

9. Avoid tourist traps

Touristy hotspots are often overpriced and very busy – avoid these in favour of sights that aren’t designed to exploit people who haven’t done their research.

10. Know what the tipping custom is

While in America tipping 20% is expected, that’s not the case everywhere. In fact, in some countries, tipping isn’t the norm at all. Don’t get caught out!

11. Eat what the locals eat

Avoid chain restaurants and ones that are geared towards catering to tourists. Also, if you eat what the locals eat, you’re likely to get fairer priced food, and a more authentic experience.

12. Haggle

While at home in Britain, haggling isn’t something we’re overly used to, that’s not the case elsewhere – particularly at markets. Try bargaining with stall holders and see if you can snag a discount. 

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