Traveling on the Cheap
After 5 years of traveling for weddings, I have traveling down to somewhat of a science. I have researched ways to save, be more efficient, and travel with a level of comfort. Here are a few tips:
Flights: My preferred place to find the best prices on flights is Skiplagged. A lot of people use Google Flights or Hopper (both great!), but Skiplagged has a unique advantage. Let’s say you’re flying Miami to NYC, there may be a flight on Skiplagged to Chicago from Miami with a layover in NYC that’s actually cheaper. Skiplagged is also great for comparing prices when you’re dates are flexible. *disclaimer, Skiplagged can be risky, so you should approach with caution
Hotels: You may not believe me when I say this, but I’m a big fan of Motel 6. They did a re-brand a couple of years ago and I have had nothing but great experiences and they are 100% pet friendly! At the end of the year when I’m adding up how much I spent on hotels, I don’t want it to be 10% of my income. I prefer to go cheap on hotels, so that I can spend that money elsewhere. ($65 vs $150 adds up, y’all)
Rental Cars: I’ve been renting cars since I was 18 years old and had to pay a $75/ day underage fees. You best believe that I cut back where I can. My #1 go-to for rental cars is Priceline. You can reserve your car online at the cheapest possible price and cancellations are flexible. I was in line at a rental car place at an airport to pick up my car and it was 30 people long. I checked rates on Priceline, cancelled my booking, and re-booked with another company that had no line and my rate was cheaper.
Packing: Be strategic. Let’s put all that knowledge from those Buzzfeed articles about how to create a capsule wardrobe to use. I have always found that when I over-pack, I’m miserable and I feel like my life is in dissaray. Clothes strewn everywhere in a hotel along with a bunch of miscellaneous items and it’s hell to re-pack when I’m heading home. Pack outfits that go together and that you can mix-and-match. You can stretch three outfits into five days, I promise. Roll your clothes. This is great because #1 it saves space and #2 it also gives you a quick visual of everything you have in your suitcase.
A cord organizer!!!! A friend recommended this a while ago and I ordered one. It has changed.my. life.
Pack your own snacks. You may be the kind of person who impulse buys a snack tray on the plane is $10 or God forbid a $20 airport meal. Stop by the grocery store before your flight and eat for 25% of the cost and it will be food you actually like, rather than three pieces of stale cheese and broken crackers.
Waze for your road trips. I’ve found that Waze is the best way to get around in cities and you can compare gas prices easily along your route, which can save you a little chunk of change.
Host your apartment or house on Airbnb. This usually pays for 75-100% of my costs associate with travel. (once you do it once or twice, you get a bit of a system down)
Traveling for work on the cheap has allowed me to have more profit in my business and the money goes towards things I care about more, like getting my apartment professionally cleaned occasionally or saving to purchase a piece of furniture I’ve had my eye on. I hope that these tips are helpful to you and save you a buck or two!