For people who are planning a big international trip for the very first time, cost is almost always a big consideration. It can be difficult to anticipate how you’ll spend while you’re away, especially if you’ve never gone on an journey abroad like this before. You’ll be able to determine certain important fixed costs ahead of time, such as hotel stays and flight costs, but there are many other spontaneous purchases and necessities that can be difficult to understand in advance. Here are some of the ways to make your budget more realistic, and to stick with in after you plane lands.
1) Understand the Value of the Money You’ll Be Using.
One big problem for people who travel into a new country is understanding the value of the new money. If you don’t have any understanding of the local cost of living, or of the value of individual currency denominations as they relate to the cash you are used to back home, you’ll be much more likely to spend too much, or to be taken advantage of by someone who spotted the tourist. Study this well before you set off. Take time to watch exchange rates over days and weeks, so that you’ll know what to expect when it’s time to change your money. Don’t be caught without this knowledge, because when you improvise, you will likely lose money.
2) Shop Around for Travel Insurance.
Travel insurance is an important part of every journey for a certain kind of traveler. Calculating the cost of travel insurance ahead of time is fairly simple, but it’s a little more difficult to shop around for the best offers. Taking an hour or two to explore offers from competitors could save you lots of money. In the end, a good insurance policy could also turn a bad situation around when you run into trouble overseas.
3) Understand What Food Costs.
Eating is one of the big costs of travel. You should understand what reasonable food costs represent in the place you’ll be staying so that you don’t overpay for food. Planning ahead to buy groceries and prepare you own food is another good way to save on food.
4) Understand How to Get From Place to Place Affordably.
When you go overseas, you’ll probably want to visit all kinds of places. But to do this, you’ll need to rely on different transportation options. Will you ride public transport? Will you get a nationwide unlimited travel pass? Will you learn the subway and bus routes? Will you rent a car? Knowing what’s available ahead of time will keep you from having to spend lots of money on travel options that gravitate toward people who didn’t plan ahead. These options almost always cost much more than they’re worth, but if you’re left without another option you’ll just have to pay.
There are endless ways to save on international travel, and almost all of them involve planning ahead. The more time and research you spend before shipping off, the more opportunities you’ll find to save. The more you save, the more you can travel. It’s a win-win.