If you love to travel, you might spend your workdays in a dream-like state imagining the next time you can get away. The trouble is, it costs so much these days to get around. And wages aren’t what they used to be! Funding your passion for travel and adventure might become a full-time distraction for you. Just don’t let your boss find out! Have you considered exploring frugality to cover the costs of your next vacation? Here are 10 savings opportunities to get you started:
Can you save on your travel? Probably not - you’re already doing a great job of budgeting for that. But you can save on the travel you HAVE to do, like commuting. Ditch the car whenever you can. Leg power works for free with any pair of shoes or bike. You might even try a scooter! Try working from home once or twice a week to reduce the amount you have to spend on public transport too.
Some food can be grown at home. It can also be purchased fresh-frozen to save you a fortune in spoiled produce. Don’t ditch your healthy approach, but do shop around for a better deal on your groceries.
3. FunWith Friends
The weekends are made for having fun with your friends. You might be out on the town all night, or enjoying an elaborate meal and drinks at your favourite restaurant. What if you brought all that fun back to your place? Why not host your own dinner party and put a movie on the TV? Perhaps Netflix has a brand new series you can all get into? Going out has never been as expensive as it is today. Save some money and enjoy company at home.
4. Gym Memberships
When your gym membership for a month costs you more than you earn in a day, you know it’s time to try something else. There are literally thousands of workout videos all available for free on YouTube. You can also take what you’ve learned from your personal trainer and fitness classes and apply it at home. Why not buy a treadmill or cross trainer? Chances are the cost works out less than three months of gym membership fees. Don’t ditch your fitness programme - just tailor it to your new workout environment.
Energy bills seem to go up just when you need more heat or more lights on in the winter time. If you’ve had enough of seeing price rises on your bill, then why not switch to a cheap electricity tariff with a new provider? Lots of people know that shopping around can help you save money. But the task just seems really daunting, and you never quite know what will happen. Put your fears aside and think of all that extra cash that can be popped into your travel fund.
If you try cooking in different ways, you might be surprised by how much money you could save. Batch cooking costs you no more in gas or electricity. But you get so many more meals out of it! All you need to do is double or triple the amounts in the pot. Serve out portions in freezable containers. Wait for it all to cool, then seal them and put them in the freezer. Most microwaves can turn that icy pot into a delicious meal in under ten minutes, remembering to stir halfway through. Always check your meal is piping hot throughout before serving. Think how much time you’re saving too!
7. Drinks, Snacks and Treats
Most of the drinks and snacks we consume were purchased from vendors or vending machines that charge a premium for convenience. Coffees and chocolate bars soon add up. In fact, if you quit them for a month, you might even cover the cost of a short flight! Bring in your own coffee, bake your own snacks, and reduce your treats as much as you can to save up for that holiday of a lifetime.
Not all of us are telly-addicts, but we do tend to consume a lot of entertainment each week. Perhaps you have expensive TV subscription packages that you don’t really use that much? Can you bear to ditch them for a couple of months so you can redirect the funds toward your travel passion? What about gaming? Console games have become insanely expensive in the last few years. Sure, they’re good. But which do you love more - the travel or the game?
Do you ever peruse the sales rack and end up coming home with something you never went out to buy? We’ve all done it. It’s a bargain after all. A change in your buying habits might free up some extra cash for travelling. Audit your wardrobe. Come on - you know that closet needs some serious tidying! It can help you organise your fashion choices so that you can clearly see what you have. Now gift away anything you know you don’t really want to wear again. What’s left?
There might be some key items or essentials missing now. Those are the things to shop for. If it doesn’t replace something worn or seriously out of style, don’t buy it. This can be really tough, but if travel is your passion over fashion, it needs to be done.
10. Housing Costs
What’s your dream? Is it to travel for as many months of the year as your boss will allow? Then why are you so homely? You could free up a significant amount of your income if you’re willing to downsize or move to a less expensive neighbourhood. Why not move to a house share? If you’re not there for most of the time, it shouldn’t matter how big or luxurious your home is. This move could reduce your tax bill too.
These are just 10 ways you could save faster for your next travel adventure. You don’t have to do them all, but one or two might be easy enough to implement. Best of all, none of these changes needs to be permanent, unless you want to keep travelling!