When saving up for your next travelling experience, there are lots of things you can do to maximise that precious dollar. Here are ten of mine that I swear by:
1. Get a second job: Yes you get taxed maybe more than you would want, but I live off of the money from my second job and then save as much of my salary as possible from my main employment. It’s hard work but it makes such a difference.
2. Get a savings account that isn’t easy to access: Keeping your savings in a different bank account than the one you use on a regular basis is a great way to save money and it’s even better if that account is harder to get to than normal. Online ISAs are a good way to put your money away where it cannot be accessed by a card and they often have good interest rates too.
3. Save anything under five pounds: This one sounds silly until you do it but I started saving any pound coins in my pay packet and also those that ended up in my purse as change. Keep them in a jar or a bag and soon you’ll be surprised at how much you have accumulated!
4. Keep enough cash in your wallet to last you but not too much: The more money I have in my purse, the more likely I am to spend it all. Keep enough notes in there so that you don’t have to use your card and put the rest somewhere safe.
5. Be thrifty: Don’t get me wrong we all have to splurge once in a while and you shouldn’t deprive yourself of a treat now and again. But if your thing is designer handbags and shopping trips every week you are going to struggle to save up enough to undertake a large-scale trip (unless you have a large disposable income and then wooohoooo; I salute you!). I have said no to many an impulse buy during the last 6 months and my pocket is definitely better off because of it.
6. Limit your outgoings: So you’ve got rent, Netflix, Amazon Prime, a phone contract and your credit card exiting your main account every month. This is hardly a recipe for a healthy bank balance as all those outgoings can quickly eat into those precious savings. Limit yourself to only a couple of outgoings that you really need and deal with it. Even if something is only 5 pounds a month, if you don’t use it or could live without it get rid! every little helps!
7. Recycle, Reuse & Sell: Those denim shorts you bought 2 years ago? If they fit wear them. Do you really need to buy a new pair every year? Equally we all have those purchases in our wardrobes that still have the tags attached. Why not sell them? Gumtree and Ebay are just a couple of sites that you can sell second hand goods on and while you might only get a few pounds for each item, after going through your wardrobe those pounds will soon add up to a pretty healthy sum!
8. When changing your currency make sure you get the best rates possible: Don’t just walk into the nearest post office, or worse change your currency at the airport; shop around to see where is offering you the best rate and then change your money over.
9. Plan your travels alone: When I embarked on my first backpacking trip I was alone and therefore decided to book a package experience. While I loved every second, on reflection I could have done the same trip myself for a lot less money. Travel companies need to make a profit and therefore you end up paying for the privilege of not having to organise your own travels. Take the plunge and plan your itinerary yourself. Your wallet will thank you for it!
10. When organising your trip look for deals: Skyscanner and STA Travel allow you to look for the cheapest flights to your destination. As well as this if you look hard enough you can find lovely hostels for a very cheap nightly rate. Doing a little more research than normal will guarantee that you’ll find the right things for you at much better prices than you may have anticipated.
What are your fool-proof ways of maximising your savings for your next trip? I would love to hear them!