Frugal Tips for Travel

nola edited Frugal Tips for Travel

The French Quarter Festival – New Orleans

There are many ways to enjoy a new destination and to conserve money while doing it. After taking many trips on a shoestring budget, we decided to compile a list of our favorite tips for saving money while traveling.

Spend time at the beach:  Ocean views are gorgeous, free, and can vary quite a bit depending on which beach you visit. You can also get inexpensive snorkel gear and go on an adventure.

Pack a picnic:  Picnics are romantic and can be had pretty much anywhere. Choose a location with a view for the best experience.

Take a hike:  Get some exercise and breathe in some fresh mountain air or a cool ocean breeze. Explore the area where you’re traveling and see how the terrain differs from your home terrain.

Watch the sunset or sunrise:  Take a scenic drive to a lookout point or climb a mountain for a stellar view.

Go to a park:  Local parks can give you a glimpse into how the locals live. In Europe it’s common to bring a blanket, a bottle of wine, and some cheese and bread. Sit and relax a while.

Act like a local:  Do your research and find local events, deals and discount days. Some ideas you may find include a happy hour, free festival, free museum day, free botanical gardens, or even attending a local art walk or gallery exhibition.

Travel when free local festivals are happening:  Plan your trip to San Francisco when the 3-day Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival happens. Go to New Orleans when the locals have their free version of Jazz Fest, the French Quarter Fest. Visit Denver during Tour de Fat. Find a location you’re intrigued by and research the best time to go.

Get pampered on a budget:  It’s always nice to be pampered but even more so when one is traveling. Go to a massage or aesthetician clinic and get spa treatments at a fraction of the normal cost. Alternatively, take a day class on massage with your partner to learn how to work on each other.

Choose alternative transportation:  Don’t waste money getting a rental car if the city/cities you are visiting have good local public transit. For a little more adventure, you can also rent bicycles.

Check out Couchsurfing meet-ups:  Websites like have great events that are posted often. They may have a meet-up at a park, bar, restaurant, or even a local’s house. This can help you get a more realistic regional experience, especially if you are traveling abroad.

Shop at farmer’s markets:  This is one of our favorite ways to save while traveling! Visiting the farmer’s market is an adventure in itself. You can buy fresh foods, rather than eating out, and get a taste for what is common to the area.

What are your favorite ways to save money while traveling?