Here are six of the most popular.
In today’s cash-conscious travel industry, travellers are finding that they must cut down on costs if they want to afford visiting their favourite places.
The good news is that the internet is awash with special tips and hacks to help us save cash – but how do we know which ones are really worth our time?
As one of the largest online forums, Reddit is a hub of millions of users’ thoughts ideas and opinions. In its sub-forum R/travelhacks, 845,000 members gather to chat about the best things to do to save money while travelling.
Here are six of the most popular.
- Get a cheap local translator
Ever been in a fix with the local language? Despite English being a commonly spoken language, presuming locals speak it is presumptuous and can lead to awkward situations.
One Reddit user suggested a clever solution. Being a regular business traveller, he always wanted to go sightseeing, but sometimes found local guides to be thin on the ground. So, before he left, he would contact the local university’s English language department to see if any students would spend a day showing him around.
Not only could they practice their English with him, but he got to know all the inside secrets about the city that only a local would know. He would always pay around $100 for the privilege, a bargain by some tourist guide’s standards.
Hotel rate guarantee
Hotels often offer ‘Best Rate Guarantees’, particularly at times of low demand. This is where they match the price of one of their rooms offered via a third-party provider and add a 25% discount on top.
One Reddit user got lucky and found a Marriott Hotel with this promotion for Miami. They found the exact same room through a provider for much cheaper, booked the room via Marriott, then claimed back the difference (plus the 25% discount) from them. Instead of $388 per night, they ended up paying just over $140, much less than half the original amount.
This works with any hotel offering this guarantee, but there may be some issues. Many hotel sites only accept credit or debit cards, and not digital wallets. So, while you might be used to paying deposits into PayPal casinos or transferring money to your friends that way, you may hit a brick wall if you want to use up your PayPal funds to book a hotel and claim back the price difference.
Still, if you’re happy using a card, then you should find that the world is your oyster when it comes to discounted hotel bookings.
Use Vanly for group travel
Travelling by van has many great benefits: multiple people can share fuel costs, it’s great fun for groups of friends to get around, and you only need a driving licence to drive one.
The trouble is sometimes it’s difficult to actually park one overnight and sleep safely, especially in cities. That’s why a group of friends created an app called Vanly which connects van enthusiasts with safe overnight parking in private driveways. Hosts typically offer Wi-Fi, power and water, which is super helpful on road trips.
Van drivers, then, save having to pay for accommodation on top of their parking, and kill two birds with one stone!
Apple Airtags have helped us slash the amount of lost property lying around in airports around the world, with owners now able to find keys, apparel and even vehicles using the tracking devices.
What many people don’t realise, though, is that we can also use them on checked baggage. This way, we know exactly when it’s going to arrive at baggage claims or where to go when we lose it.
It adds for extra peace of mind when we’re travelling, as we don’t have to worry where our bag has got to.
Beware of Airbnb locations
Airbnb built its reputation on offering travellers affordable accommodation in tourist hotspots, much to the annoyance of hotels, but some of its standards have started to slip. That’s if you check out certain online reviews.
One Reddit user told a horror story of how she booked accommodation in the wrong city due to the misleading ‘bubble locations’. These zone in on the neighbourhood where you’ll be staying without giving an overall view of the city. It led the user to book a property in the CITY of Sonsonate, El Salvador, rather than the neighbourhood with the same name in another city 50 miles away.
Because she only found out this mistake AFTER she paid, she found it difficult to get her $1,100 refund from the host, who insisted that the listing was correct.
A smart thing to do is request the address from the host BEFORE paying.
Avoid pre-cut fruit
Travelling to places without high food safety standards means we should always try and get hot and fresh food. A general tip is don’t buy anything you can’t peel, cook, or boil.
One common source of food poisoning that may not automatically spring to mind is pre-cut fruit. We don’t know what knife the seller has used to slice the fruit plus, once the fruit has lost its rind or peel, its shelf life at room temperature reduces dramatically – even if it appears fresh.
Several Reddit users were caught out by enticing dishes of sliced fruit, a reminder that we must always keep our wits about us when we travel!