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Saving Money: Top Travel Tips

Some of the most common travel questions relate to saving money during a holiday. After all, the more you can save, the more adventures you can have! (Well, kind of.)

Not sure how to save for a holiday? These money saving tips will help you keep your bank account in the positive while still making the most of your time abroad.

Exchange cash before you go

This way you’ll avoid airport fees and the possibility of getting ripped off at your destination.

Prepare a stopover budget

If you have a significant stopover between home and your destination, get some cash for that country. Even though you could exchange (or potentially use other currencies) at the airport, the exchange rate is unlikely to be favourable.

Try a prepaid travel money card

Lock in your exchange rate and keep track of your budget with a convenient prepaid travel money card.

Stick to local currency

If you’ve decided to go with your bank card rather than a prepaid travel money card, that’s OK. We won’t hold it against you. But here’s a tip: always choose to pay in the local currency when you have the choice. A retailer’s bank will always have a less favourable exchange rate than your bank back home.

Double check your cash when exchanging overseas

Some countries are home to unscrupulous money changers. Always count your cash after an exchange, and always go with reputable brands where possible.

Give yourself more spending options

Can’t decide between paper and plastic? Why not both? Splitting your money means misplacing your card or getting swiped by a pickpocket won’t be a total disaster. While you’re at it, leave some spare cash or a backup money card in your hotel room safe, and split your dough between people if you’re travelling with companions.

Research the local customs

Some countries charge extra for table service. In other countries, haggling at the markets is accepted or even expected. Not knowing these customs is an easy way to lose extra cash you could’ve saved. There’s no excuse – get online and do your research! Check out our travel money guides for destination specific tips.

Say YES to freebies

Does your hotel offer free breakfast and Wi-Fi? Fill up on both each and every morning. And if they provide complimentary bottled water, pack it in your backpack and fill it up during the day (assuming your destination has safe-to-drink tap water).

Do some reconnaissance to see if there are any free sections of public transport (like a hop-on/hop-off inner-city bus) and any free walking tours and events. These little savings can really add up.

Don’t miss out on refunds

If you’re too quick to check in your luggage, you might miss out on some handsome refunds. Many countries will refund you taxes paid on significant purchases. Do some research and you might find yourself with a nice payday on the last day of your trip.