Saving For Travel: 7 Tips To Save For A Dream Trip
Have you ever wondered how on earth you will save up for that dream trip of yours? Trust us, we’ve all been there. We know how difficult it can be to save money for travel, especially with the cost of living rising each year and unexpected bills popping up all over the place. Whether it’s an expensive MOT for your car or a leak in the kitchen, these things cost money… and it all adds up! Sometimes it’s just a simple habit like spending all your paycheck on clothes or takeaways, but sometimes it’s just a simple case of not knowing how to save efficiently.
Do you ever feel like you get paid, and then your money just disappears? Yep, us too! If we don’t keep track of where we are spending our money, it can just seem to vanish without a trace. However, it’s not all doom and gloom. There are so many budget savvy ways to save money that you can take advantage of. Saving for travel can be overwhelming when you don’t know where to start, but don’t fret – we’ve put together the ultimate guide down below, to help you save for your next holiday.
OUR BEST TIPS WHEN SAVING FOR TRAVEL
1. CREATE A BUDGET SPREADSHEET
The best way to keep track of your money is to create a spreadsheet. Split the spreadsheet into bills, grocery shopping, eating out/takeaways, your hobbies and other expenses. This will help you see what you are spending your money on, and where you can cut back. If you are spending $50 a month on takeaways, then this is an easy thing to cut down on and some of that $50 can go straight into your savings account. If you are lucky, some mobile banking apps will have this feature included which makes it even easier!
Now of course we aren’t saying to cut everything out. Everyone needs a little something to look forward to, especially during these hard times. If you have a hobby that you enjoy, and that is your way to relax then don’t cut it out completely. Just look at the amount you are spending on this pastime, and give yourself a limit on how much to spend.
2. MEAL PREP & SHOP IN ADVANCE
This sounds like an easy one, but it is so easy to fall out of the habit if you don’t stick to it! If you do your big shop at the weekend, you can plan and prep all your meals for the week after. Not only will this save you time during the week, but it also means you won’t have to nip to the supermarket during the week because you have all your meals ready, and you’ll stop grabbing those unnecessary snacks!
Another thing we’ll add on to this one, because it’s SO important – is never go shopping hungry. We’ve all been there, you are feeling peckish so decide to head to the supermarket. Once you’re there, you see all the goodies because your eyes are bigger than your belly, and you end up spending a fortune. This is a super easy one to change, and definitely one we recommend.
3. CONSISTENTLY TRANSFER MONEY TO YOUR SAVINGS
One of the best things to do when it comes to saving for travel, is to have a savings account dedicated to your trip. That way when you get paid each month, you can put some of your money away and not touch it. If you’ve created that budget spreadsheet that we mentioned earlier, you can work out how much you spend on groceries and bills and then allow yourself some spending money.
A good way to do this is by working out a baseline amount that you want in your bank account at any one time. As soon as you get any extra money, transfer it straight into your savings.
4. DON’T OVERSPEND ON MATERIAL ITEMS!
This is a big spending habit for many people, and it’s the perfect thing to stop if you are saving for travel. Clothes generally are not cheap, especially those fancy designer jeans you have your eye on (yes, we’re calling you out here!). The question you need to ask yourself is do you really need them? Or would you rather spend that money on a plane ticket?
If you love buying clothes, and like to snap up a great deal then we have some news for you! Just wait, and buy some of your clothes during your trip. If you are planning a trip to the likes of Southeast Asia or South America, you can find some awesome bargains at the local markets. If you do need to purchase clothes before your trip, then why not head to a local charity shop? Purchasing your clothes from second hand shops will not only be cheaper, but is so much better for the planet too. Reusing clothes is much better for the environment as it saves landfill space and saves massive amounts of energy that are used in textile production. By buying second hand and giving clothes another life, you can save money and also know that you are doing some good for our beautiful world.
5. Check your utility bills to see if you can save money
Those pesky utility bills can take out a large chunk of your pay packet. If your bills seem to be going up all the time (which let’s be honest, they do) why not see if you can save money by swapping providers. There are so many different gas, electric and WiFi providers out there so have a shop around, and see if you can save some money. The best way to do this is by looking at money comparison websites such as Uswitch, Moneysupermarket and comparethemarket.
Likewise If you have any other outgoings that you don’t really need, that is a great way to get rid of expenses. If you have a gym membership, but you’ve enjoyed training at home during the lockdowns, why not cancel it? If you have an expensive TV package, but have found other ways to fill your time, why not consider cancelling it for a while?
6. CUT OUT THE TAKE-OUT
This is a big one, because we love food! We adore eating out, and who doesn’t love a good takeaway? It is the perfect way to wind down after a long day at work. You don’t have to cook, there aren’t many dishes to clean and you can eat it in front of the TV. Of course, during the recent lockdowns, dining out hasn’t been a thing but that has meant even more takeaways than usual! Now is the time to look at cutting down your takeaway budget, and limiting them to be more of a treat to try and save some money.
7. SHOP AROUND FOR TRAVEL DEALS
There are so many ways to make your trip cheaper, if you know your travel hacks! If you’re not keen to go down the backpacking on a shoestring route, but you still want to keep costs down – why not consider an organised trip? They can generally work out cheaper, as you’ll be travelling in a group and most of your costs are laid out in advance. You’ll pay a lump sum at the beginning, which will cover most of your activities, a lot of your meals and all of your accommodation too! On our group trips we also send out a budget guide prior to arrival, so you can estimate all of your extra costs and plan ahead.
(FYI – we currently have an enormous 15% off all our group trips, just use the code ONELIFE15 at checkout. It won’t last for long, so get in quick! – April 2021)
SO, HOW MUCH SHOULD I SAVE FOR TRAVEL?
It can be difficult to work out a goal when saving for a trip, but it is really important. First of all you want to work out a few things; the duration of your trip, whether you’re backpacking or flashpacking, and look at how those costs can vary in the country you’re headed to!
Is it just a short trip spanning one or two weeks, or are you looking to travel for longer? If you are planning to go on a gap year, are you going for 6 months or for a full year? There’s also the option to take part in a working holiday where you can get a visa and work abroad to help fund your trip, so make sure you look into all your options!
Do you want to travel in style or are you happier travelling on a budget and stretching your money out? There are so many different ways to travel and everyone has their own way. If you like staying in nice hotels, or prefer all inclusive trips then your expenses may be quite high. If you are happy to sleep on trains, stay in hostels and eat street food then your costs are going to be much lower!
Whatever your time frame and budget, do some research and come up with a daily budget you think you can stick to. Then you can work out how many days your trip will last for and how much you should save. For example if you are planning to travel through South America for two months, and think you can stick to $50 a day, then you’d be looking to save about $3,000. Then it’s best to add a bit more on for any activities that aren’t planned, and circumstances outside your control. To state the obvious you will need to save a lot less if you are planning a 2 week trip, than if you are planning to backpack around the world for a year. However, your money can go a long way if you are travelling to the right countries! A month in Indonesia may cost you £600, whilst a two week trip to France will easily cost the same, if not more.
You don’t need to feel overwhelmed when it comes to saving for travel. There are so many ways to cut your costs, and reduce how much you spend on unnecessary things. By working out the duration of your trip, where you want to travel and some of the activities you want to do, you can work out a rough budget and gauge how much you need to save to make the trip a reality.
“Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer”
Now whenever those expensive shoes are calling your name, remember this quote and dream of that bucket list destination. You can do it!
Feeling inspired to save for your next adventure? Check out our trips here and use the code ONELIFE15 at checkout to get an enormous 15% off all our trips, for a limited time only!
WRITTEN BY: ABBIE BEVAN