In The Fairy Tale of my Life: An Autobiography, Hans Christian Andersen said “to travel is to live”. A lot of people who have travelled can relate to this quote. There is a je ne sais quoi (“I don’t know what”) to seeing new lands and people that enriches our lives. Unfortunately, what the famous scribe forgot to mention is that travelling will cost you money – and in some cases, quite a lot of it.
Regardless of whether you want to trek through Nicaragua in South America or laze about on a beach in Australia, while at staying in short term accommodation, you’re going to have to think about money. It’s not entirely in keeping with the romance associated with travel, but it is practical. And the last thing you want is to run out of money when you’re far from home. What this article is going to suggest is that with a little planning, you’re not only going to have a life changing experience, but you are going to do it without having to constantly worry about how much cash you have.
You can’t budget without savings.
Before you can create a travel budget, you need something in your bank account, and the only way that’s going to happen is if you save. A little trick is to work out when you’d like to travel and how much money you’ll need. Let’s say you aim to hike through Nepal for one month, a year from now, and you want to save $4,000. From there you can work out how much you need to save per week. The above example is quite easy – simply divide the amount (4k) by the number of weeks (52), giving you a grand total of $77 per week to save. Make sure you are hitting this target. Saving anything above this is a bonus and will provide you a financial safety net.
A common mistake is not taking into account the amount required to get your to destination and then back home. You also have to consider how much it costs to get around once you’re there. Go into a travel agency or jump online and do some investigating on how much it costs to travel to that location. That will give you a rough idea, but be prepared for that figure to change when you decide to book. The general rule is that flights are cheaper the sooner you book them. Also look into other transportation costs, such as rental cars, trains, busses, and taxis.
What is the average travel expense per day?
Accommodation, food, entertainment, and incidentals – how much will they cost you per day? It is great to have a per diem figure that you can work towards. It is one of the most important aspects to a travel budget, especially if you are planning on traversing the globe for an extended period of time. If you’re not sure how much it will cost you per day in the country you are travelling to, Budget Your Trip can give you an accurate figure.
Your daily budget will keep your expenses in control. However, you don’t have to stick to it every day. On certain days, you’re likely to spend over this amount because you want to visit an expensive art gallery or go on a tour. Some people may stop themselves from doing an activity because it will exceed their budget, but what’s the point in travelling if you’re going to miss out on a great opportunity? A strategy that is often employed by the moneywise traveller is to offset the budget blow-out by spending less money on a different day. It doesn’t mean that you are doing anything less enjoyable on these days, you are just looking for things to do that are cheap or free. Examples include; exploring the city on foot, going for a hike, or heading to the beach.
You now have your budget in order and you’re ready to jet set overseas. The next part is quite simple – working how much money you need in another currency. An easy way to work this out is to jump on XE Currency Converter , which provides up-to-date exchange rates.
Changing money is going to cost you a fee (refer to your bank or other financial institutions to find out how much), so make sure you are only exchanging what you need. Converting back currency is a waste of money. With a little experience under your belt, you will become more economical with this process.