How to travel the world on a tight budget


Travelling the world is right at the top of many a bucket list, but the cost of globetrotting could put you off.

But, there are in actual fact a whole host of tips, tricks and strategies you could deploy to make that once-in-a-lifetime trip a reality without breaking the bank.

Be organised

The golden rule right from the off is to make sure that you are supremely well organised. Take an eye off the details and you may well find yourself burning through your cash in no time at all.

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Instead, you should start by making a list of exactly where you would like to visit on your trip and the time of year for your ideal vacation. Otherwise, once you begin it can be easy to get carried away and find yourself left heading out on a mammoth trip with a price tag to match.

Book early

A key part of being organised is making sure that you, where possible, book your travel and accommodation as far in advance as you can. Doing so will more often than not give you the best rates available. This also removes the potential stress of discovering that you’re due to stay in a particular city but cannot find a single hotel room available. Early booking will also often give you cut-price rates for local bus and rail fares, so again it is well worth planning as far ahead as possible.

When booking your travel it is worth remembering that searching online could yield some impressive results. While walking into a high street travel agent and handing over your cash may be the easiest way to go, it is unlikely to be the most cost-efficient. Again, this comes back to doing your homework and being organised. You may also be able to chip away at the cost of your flights by using any air miles that you have accumulated over the years. It may not make a huge difference to the bottom line, but every little helps.

You can also dramatically cut the cost of your round the world trip by travelling in the off season. Avoiding school holidays will have a huge impact on your budget. You could tailor your trip to perfection so you avoid the peak summer months in each country you visit.

Don’t go overboard with accommodation

Accommodation represents a large outlay for most travellers. But you don’t have to sink a high proportion of your budget into a luxury hotel. Yes, we accept that opting for a five-star complex can be a real treat for a week in the sun, but basic really could be best when heading out on an ambitious worldwide getaway.

If you are planning on making the most of your trip, seeing the sights and sampling the local culture then your room will purely be somewhere to lay your head at night and get a little rest. In which case, five-star opulence is not required.

A few nights in a hostel as you hop from city to city may be the perfect choice. By staying in shared rooms or private rooms with communal bathrooms you can really save a heap of money which you can then invest in the rest of your trip. However, if privacy is of paramount importance to you then a hostel may not be for you and you may wish to consider paying out a little extra for a hotel.

Do your research

If you prefer go the hotel route keep in mind that there may be some inconsistencies with the star rating system. By this we mean that a four-star residence in some countries may seem a tad on the basic side if you are comparing it to a British four-star hotel. Once more, research is key. Why not take a good look at accommodation websites and reviews before you commit with your cash.

Be like a local

Booking flights and accommodation is just the start, there’s a host of expenditure for you to get to grips with once your trip is underway. Food is potentially a big expense. Street food is a great way of not only keeping your costs down but also of experiencing the local cuisine in the most authentic way possible.

Getting from A to B is another way that you could get hit in the pocket. When possible avoid jumping into a taxi, as hopping on a bus or train will save you a good chunk of change. Plus, sitting back and relaxing on the bus is a great way of immersing yourself with the locals and also getting a superb view of the area.

Excursions offer the opportunity to indulge in some once-in-a-lifetime adventures, but they can come at a cost. Again, plan ahead and check for the best prices online before handing over your money.