Travelling on a budget is a dream for any cost-conscious traveller. Look online, and you’ll get overwhelmed by every cheap travel hack that promises mind-blowing hotel and airfare deals and other perks to make your trip less painful for your wallet. But despite all the available resources, travelling cheaply is becoming less likely.
Travelling to expensive countries can be a little challenging. You have to consider the cost of transportation, hotel accommodation, food, and sightseeing expenses. In Asia, many travellers assume Singapore is more expensive than other western cities. But in reality, Singapore is significantly cheaper. In fact, if you plan to do some activities in Changi Airport, you’ll find many attractions and interesting destinations to visit at a budget-friendly cost.
If there’s one important strategy for travelling cheaply, it’s about being flexible with your travel plans, destinations, and schedule. Although this sounds simple, many travellers are trying very hard to follow this piece of advice. Having a flexible mindset is very useful if you’re keen to travel with a limited budget. To help you travel with flexibility, here are ways to do it.
Planning with flexibility
The travel costs depend on several factors: supply, demand, randomness, and the number of choices. When making travel plans, the first thing most people do is limit their options. This means the travel costs will depend on only three variables, which happens beyond your control. If the economic condition works in your favour, you may score some great deals on your preferred travel date and destination, but such things rarely happen. Most travellers are not aware that severely limiting their set of choices will only cause them to pay more than the average travel cost.
You might wonder, “How will I travel if everything is undecided?” Setting up some boundaries on your search will make the planning easier. These boundaries may include your desired climate, type of destination, and specific budget range. From there, you can start comparing different travel dates and destinations to determine which one will accommodate your preference.
For instance, you start the search by finding the cheapest flights to Hawaii, but you find out that airfare is too expensive. You switch to other tropical destinations with cheaper flights. Looking at other closest alternatives will help score your desired destination and dates with a great combination of features and travel cost.
Although this sounds easy, you can imagine how many travellers or doing this the other way. They start with a destination and a date, then force themselves to accept whatever price comes up.
Using the right tools
As more travellers recognize the importance of flexibility in their travel plans, travel booking services and websites grab the opportunity by developing useful tools designed for cost-conscious travellers.
If you want to stay updated on the best travel deals, subscribe to travel newsletters and websites that will keep you updated on cheap flights and send real-time deal alerts. These tools will monitor the most updated fares and send alerts as soon as fares drop. Some examples of airfare deal newsletters are Airfarewatchdog, Scott’s Cheap Flights, Secretflying, and The Flight Deal. These alert services and newsletters submit email blasts to their subscribers once they found the cheapest airfare deal.
The only catch is that airfare deals have limited dates and very specific on destinations. So you better not sit around waiting for a miracle to happen because they won’t easily come around. The best you can do is wait for a great deal and grab it once it’s available.
Another great travel planning tool is travel search engines with flexible search tools. Each travel search engine has its own speciality. For example, Kayak is known for flight packages. Flights are perfect for multi-city flights, while Priceline offers a price match guarantee.
Stretch your options
Having flexible timing is key for scoring amazing flight and airfare deals. A sale to a specific destination will often appear at a two- to a three-month window which is a little earlier or by next year. If you allow flexibility in your schedule, it shouldn’t matter if you’re travelling to your destination a few months ahead of your preferred date if such a move will get you spending less.
The best you can do to getting affordable deals is to be flexible with your dates and find out whatever is available.
If you always wonder why other travellers find it easy to spot affordable travel deals, you now understand why. A flexible travel plan is the most effective way to lower down travel costs. Plus, being flexible allows you to be informed of other cheaper travel deals for your next trip. This openness will help you explore places and try experiences you never would imagine.