Traveling on a Budget – Things to Prepare for Your Vacation

Going on vacation doesn’t have to be only for the rich. With careful planning and budgeting, anyone can take a modest vacation. Here are some tips for you to keep in mind when planning for your vacation.

Do your research on cheap tickets to your destination. Depending on where you’re going, they don’t have to be airline tickets, which will usually be way more expensive than other options. Check out buses, trains, even boat or ferry prices to your destination.

Find out some cheap places to stay. You can find great hotel deals in many places, but like airplanes, they are often more expensive than other options. Check out hostels, bed and breakfasts, or even websites like www.couchsurfing.com where you can find a willing host to let you stay over for a while.

Get a good backpack. Don’t get bogged down with tons of luggage. It’s best to pack wisely, and the rule is that the biggest backpack you have, the more tempted you will be to fill it up. Only bring essentials with you, and pack lightly! You will likely not need as much as you think you’ll need. It’s also a good idea to find out exactly what the regulations are for traveling with your baggage. You don’t want to pay extra! Pack according to the airline or railway, or even less is better.

Use cash if possible. Travelers checks are also all right, but please, avoid credit cards at all costs. You will most likely need more money than you think you’ll need and credit cards shouldn’t be a part of anyone’s budget. It’s way too easy to let spending get out of control when using a credit card.

Don’t eat out. This will rack up lots of unnecessary spending. Try your hand at eating like the locals and buy your food at grocery stores, open air markets or farmers markets.

Walk or rent a bicycle. These are not only the best ways to really explore a new place, but they’re cheap and will keep you in great shape, too. Buses, taxis and especially car rentals are easy ways to burst your budget!

Avoid tourist traps. Or, if you’re really tempted, try your best to find really great deals. There are lots of museums around the world that offer free admission or accept donations.

You may want to consider travelers insurance. It’s generally not very expensive and covers a lot, and could really be worth it in case anything happens to all that cash you’re carrying around.

Last but certainly not least, consider a staycation! Staycations are great economical alternatives to traveling. They consist of staying local, sleeping at home, and really checking out what’s available in your own backyard. From local museums to barbecuing at a local park, there’s often lots you can do right at home. Just be sure to turn off phones, computers, Blackberries. Remember, this is your time, so have fun with it!