Believe it or not, traveling on a budget is feasible if you stick to the budget. A popular internet forum asked its user how to travel without spending a fortune. Here is what they had to say.
1. Flying is the Expensive Part
Thailand is an excellent example of a pricey flight and an inexpensive way of living. One user on this thread said accommodations cost $5 a night for a nice hotel and $3-$5 per meal. That boils down to around $20 a day for a luxurious visit—however, flights from the U.S. to Thailand range from $1,000 to $2,000.
2. Food is Cheaper
Food in foreign countries costs much less than it does in the United States, and most of the time, the quality of the food is better for you and tastes better. In addition, other countries don't pump their vegetables and livestock full of pesticides and steroids to enlarge them.
Instead, they eat fresh, natural food and don't overcharge for quality. I spent around $6 for a nice meal when I visited Peru. In Florida, I spend anywhere from $15 to $30 on sit-down dinners.
3. All About Attitude
People who don't travel have a lot of opinions about travel. Why? Fear, probably. Those who don't travel are quick to avoid thinking about traveling because they believe it is too expensive. Yes, traveling can be costly, but it can also be an excellent budgeting tactic.
Your attitude dictates how much money you spend. If you don't mind staying in hostels, you save a chunk of cash each night. You can purchase hearty meals from the grocery store if you don't need to eat out daily. If you don't need a rental car, use public transportation!
4. Stay in Hostels
Going off the above statement, hostels are great for those who travel alone or don't feel like spending extra money on hotels. Like-minded travelers frequent hostels, making them prime locations for meeting new friends or travel partners.
5. Utilize Grocery Stores
Iceland is the most vegan-friendly country on the planet. Every restaurant has some form of vegan food on the menu, and the grocery stores pack their aisles full of vegan and vegetarian food for a fraction of the cost.
Taking a trip to the grocery store supplies you with supplemental funds to use elsewhere, and you save time on dining in restaurants.
6. Use Local Transportation
London's transportation system is my favorite (although Amsterdam's trams hold the runner-up position). It's reliable, quick, and easy to use. Plus, it's much more cost-effective than taxiing between locations or renting a car. France has a similar train system and inexpensive bus routes operated by locals and tourists.
7. Credit Card Rewards
If you don't have loads of debt, credit card rewards cut down traveling costs while giving back points and cashback. Once you rack up enough points, you unlock discounts on food, airfare, lodging, etc.
Related: The Best Travel Credit Cards for 2023
8. Planning is Your Friend
New Zealand, like Thailand, is an expensive plane ride. Partly because you must switch flights multiple times and spend over 15 hours in the air. I'm traveling to New Zealand in one year and already saving for the $3000 roundtrip flight.
You are planning flights, lodging, and activities before your trip opens your itinerary to lower prices and better deals. For example, flights and accommodation cost much less when you book six months ahead of time than a week before.
9. Travel to Less Popular Destinations
Everyone wants to go to Greece and live their Mamma Mia pipedreams. Harry Potter fanatics plead to travel to England to film sights.
While these destinations are beautiful, their popularity leads them into tourist trap territory, taking back from the awe-inspiring experience of seeing a new place. However, several users shared that traveling to lesser-known countries was cheaper and more entertaining than tourist hot spots.
10. Affordable Medical Care
Some countries that offer universal healthcare include Sweden, Switzerland, and the U.K. Last year, a family friend traveled to the U.K. and experienced a medical complication. While they didn't receive free healthcare since they aren't a U.K. resident, they received stellar treatment for a fraction of the cost.
Related: Want to Live and Work Abroad: These 7 Countries Have the Best Expat Health Insurance
This thread inspired this post.