If you have travel goals planned out for this year, you might need to do a great deal of preparation. And apart from getting a brand new pair of flip-flops and board shorts for your next out-of-town adventure this spring, you should also make time to draft your travel budget. After all, traveling can be financially exhaustive, so you have to make sure you don’t come back with a heavy credit card bill in tow.
When it comes to planning your travels, money matters a lot, but it shouldn’t stop you from having a great time scuba diving in the Maldives or visiting Tokyo izakayas. You just have to know how to make the most of the cash you have without pushing aside the element of fun!
Here are a few tips to help you get the most value from your travels.
1. Choose the best places to go
In times like these when economies are highly volatile, it pays to be practical with your plans. Being realistic allows you to make full use of the resources you have. That said, you should be able to draft travel goals that are time-bound and achievable. Hence, you should start by choosing a travel destination that jives well with your lifestyle. If you’re aiming to travel for the heck of it without spending too much money, then you might as well search for the cheapest places to travel for this year.
2. Keep tabs on exchange rates
No doubt, you will be shopping for souvenirs and paying for accommodations when you arrive at your destination. To avoid spending too much, you will have to consider the current exchange rates for the country you’re visiting. But a word of precaution: not all money changers will give you a fair exchange, so avoid getting local currency at shady places that charge too much for every transaction. You can also have the option of transacting with your bank. Another word of advice: exchange as much currency as you can so you won’t have to pay exorbitant fees for every transaction.
3. Get the right credit card for your lifestyle
Your credit card comes in handy wherever you go, but you still need to make sure you won’t be spending over your credit limit while you earn points for discounts. This is where travel credit cards come in. Not only do they offer numerous perks and freebies, but they can also offer you the best value in terms of accommodations and airfare. A good rule of thumb is to compare annual fees and determine if the cards include foreign transaction fees.
4. Drop by local shops
Why visit malls that have international shops when you can always drop by local shops that are rich in history and tradition? You can find cheap deals on souvenirs you can bring home, but what's even more memorable is the experience that you get immersing yourself in old customs and traditions. One thing’s for sure, this is one way to truly value being there in the first place.
Don’t let your travel goals wear you down financially. With these tips in mind, you will make better decisions with the cash you have on hand!