If you were a fan of our 5 simple hacks to save money when you travel post, then we’ve written this piece for you. We have six new ways to help you get more out of your travel experience.
There’s an almost endless list of place to see and numerous ways in which to see them. Whether you are into low budget options or are a fan of the luxury life, knowing how to save money and make sensible financial choices when you travel is always a plus.
1. Tell your bank where you’re going
Many people say this is an out-dated practice in the modern age, but it’s actually a common sense decision that we can’t recommend highly enough.
In 2017 16.7 million people fell victim to Identity Theft, and in response banks are now quick to shut down any transaction that looks remotely suspicious. Your card that usually buys a Starbucks in central London now paying for a beer in Mumbai is absolutely suspicious.
By letting your bank know where you are you are pre-empting any blocks they may put on your card. Don’t get caught out far from home unable to use your card and access your cash. You may end up having to pay over the odds for services or accommodation whilst you try to get things sorted out.
2. Spread your wealth
Whilst it’s true that in most cases, traveling is inherently no more dangerous that traveling on your local bus service, your lack of familiarity with your surroundings make you vulnerable to loss or theft.
Because of this it makes sense to spread your wealth whilst you travel. Put money on a pre-loaded card and carry it in one place about your person or in your bag. Additionally, make sure you have a small amount of cash also available to you, and store it away from your pre-paid card. The same goes for any credit cards you may also have.
By doing this you are safeguarding yourself against theft and loss. If you lose your bag with your credit cards in it you will still have access to cash and your pre-paid card to get you out of trouble.
3. Set up flight price alerts
A great way to ensure you get the best price for your flights is to set up a flight alert. This is a free service provided by most comparison and airline providers.
They are great because they let you stay on top of fluctuating price costs, and are the best way to snag the best price for a flight without having to sit at your computer pressing refresh every five minutes.
All you need to do is set up your time and place parameters and Google does the rest. Once you get a message with a price drop notification you can log in and buy them straight away.
4. Withdraw in local currency at ATMs (and don’t use a money changer)
A great thing about the digital age is that, in most cases, money changers are now mostly defunct; and that means so are their rates and unfair handling fees.
ATMs are the best way to get your hands on local currency as and when you need it. When withdrawing your cash at an ATM however, there are a few things to keep an eye on. Whenever the machine asks you if you’d like to withdraw in your native currency, or the local currency, always choose in the local currency.
By doing this you will avoid paying the higher rates set by the ATM company. Instead, you will use your issuing bank’s official exchange rate, which is likely to be much lower.
5. Go under cover to book flights
It’s no secret that websites ‘give’ you a cookie each time you visit. They sound sweet, but they’re anything but, especially when it comes to booking flights. This cookie lets the site know exactly what flights you looked at, including the destinations and the dates; everything, in fact, that they need to know in order to charge you more money.
Because the site now knows exactly what it is that you want, they push up the price of those particular flights and dates the next time you visit. A ways to get round this is to either buy your flights the first time you visit the site, or to visit the site in ‘incognito mode’. You can even clear all caches and history, although this wipes all data and can be tiresome if you have remembered passwords and logins.
6. Set up a saving step
The one thing we can all agree on is that, although traveling doesn’t have to cost the earth, you do spend more money than you would if you stayed at home in your pyjamas. To combat this you can set up your own personal saving step for the time that you are away.
This can be anything from setting up the Fitness Step, so that you save money as your stroll around Europe’s ancient capitals; to the Rounding Step, that saves pennies each time you buy a burger or apple pie in the states. You can even set up the travel step so that each time you spend money on flights, buses, or trains, you can save a percentage equivalent of each transaction.
By automating your savings you’re releasing yourself from the pressure of remembering to save, and allowing yourself to truly experience the moment.