Don’t be Burned-Out by the Blow-Out

"Remember, you don't have to blow-out your bank account to plan the best travel trip!

(Image: Flickr)

The start of the year is often the time when people begin to plan their next summer trip, however, it is easy to get carried away after the extravagance of Christmas and plan your money away. Here are some tips for your next trip on a budget. 

Planning and organising a holiday is arguably the most difficult part, especially if you are travelling with friends. In between deciding on a location, date, and accommodation, you have to agree on a budget. This can be problematic as everyone has their own budgets and expectations for their trip. Alongside this, social media can often lure you into planning something unecessarily luxurious. It can also be very easy to have acclimatised to overspending over the festive break, however, it is essential to not go overboard when planning. Less is often more! 

The first thing to do is to decide on a budget that works for everyone and assign a sum of money to different aspects of your trip. There needs to be a balance between accommodation costs and money to spend on activities and food. It is often helpful to decide on a budget before anything else as it stops you from planning too much extravagance. However, it is also sensible to keep your destination in mind as your budget would often depend on this. A tour around America and a weekend trip to Scarborough likely won’t have the same budget!

Next, think reasonably about your destination. Of course, it is everyone’s dream to spend six months travelling around Asia or spend a fortnight at a luxury resort in Bali, but will your student budget support that? If so, I am very jealous! Perhaps think more local, the UK can be beautiful during the summer and doesn’t include the cost of travelling across oceans. However, if you’re wanting to escape the UK then eastern European countries such as Turkey, Slovenia, Hungary, and the Czech Republic could all be viable options. 

In terms of travelling to your destination, don’t just book the easiest mode of transport. Flying is often the easiest and quickest way to get to your travel destination, but it comes at a price. Look into the cost of trains or even car rental. This way you could potentially save money and travel at a slower pace, allowing you to explore more of the world on your way. 

When it comes to accommodation youth hostels are the way to go. Depending on the size of the group, you can opt for a private room and split the cost or stay in dormitories. They are cheap, sociable, and often offer lots of opportunities to explore the place you are staying or take part in activities. AirBnB can also work out cheaper, depending on your group size and location. However, you could also take advantage of your friend’s university accommodation and return the favour, exploring different parts of the UK without any accommodation costs!

Once you’ve sensibly planned and budgeted the logistics of your next trip, it is very easy to fall into the trap of splurging on activities. Set aside a certain amount of money and try not to exceed it. Remember to keep some behind in case of emergencies though! It is often better if you book in advance for certain more commercial things you are set on doing, such as museum visits, tours, etc, but be spontaneous! 

Don’t book activities such as clubs, restaurants, water sports, or bike hire for example. These can often be found cheaper when you get there if you search for the cheapest place and occasionally don’t settle on the first given price. 

Hopefully, this has helped to avoid excessive spending when planning your next travel trip. Another thing to add is to potentially book last minute, or double check cancellation policies for your bookings as you don’t want to lose money due to the uncertainty of travel at the moment. Remember, you don’t have to blow out your bank account to plan the best travel trip!