We all know that traveling abroad costs a lot of money but you can get the most out of your travel budget by spending some time early on to research your destination.
Key findings from Visa’s 2013 Global Travel Intentions Survey found travelers from around the world spent $2,390 on their last trip. According to the same survey, this spend is expected to grow by 5 per cent to $2,501 for their next trip abroad.
Having reached the destination, travelers mainly spend their budget on retail dining and tourism activities (Now you may not know this but making the most of the benefits offered by your debit card can help you spend within your means.
So read on for tips on getting the most for your money and keeping within your means.
Before you go
Keeping an eye on group buying sites such as Lonely Planet, Cleartrip or others both in your home town and destination city will help you save money on tourist attractions, dining out and travel packages.
When you’re shopping for the best deals online or in-store, debit cards are increasingly becoming accepted everywhere that you can use your credit card so take advantage of this. By using a debit card you are drawing funds directly from your current account – you can buy now and pay now – so there is no need to worry about paying a bill later on or incurring interest charges.
Another way to cut down on expenses is rethinking peak travel dates or book several months in advance before the booking frenzy kicks off.
While you’re there go local
When you’re abroad, making the most of experiencing local culture and living like a local is not only a fantastic experience but will also help to keep a lid on expenses. Choose hotels that are easily accessible with public transportation and avoid cabs which can be more expensive. Before you take off familiarize yourself with the transportation routes to key sights you want to visit.
Try local restaurants while you are traveling. It’ll help you save money and get you sampling local cuisine. Try to avoid eating at obvious tourist traps as cuisine will always cost a premium at these locations and if you don’t have enough cash on hand, you can always use your debit card to withdraw from international ATMs.
Staying in budget
Whether you’re traveling with family or friends, an accommodation option are full-service apartments which are a good alternative for extended visits.
Amongst the older demographic, homeowners are swapping residences as another alternative. Sites like http://www.homeexchange.com and http://www.homeaway.com are becoming increasingly popular as it is an entirely different experience to a hotel – you get a local feel and even the possibility of making some new lifelong friends. Work/study hard, play harder
Gap years, international co-op placements, studying abroad and volunteer opportunities with IGOs/ NGOs are also growing increasingly popular with young people who are keen to explore the world. Sometimes there is a cost associated with participating in various programs but you get to really immerse yourself in a foreign culture.
To get the most out of your trip abroad think specifically when you want to travel, where you want to visit and how much you need to budget for the trip. Whatever option you plan to take, remember that your debit card will allow you to withdraw from overseas ATMs so you can feel safe in the knowledge that you don’t have to carry large sums of cash around with you.
Whatever you choose to do on your adventure, your debit card is one tool to keep you in budget by spending only what you have. And remember, bargain hunt, stay savvy and enjoy your travels!