I’m a travel expert – these are my top tips for seeing the world on a budget, from taxi haggling to avoiding planes

I’m a travel expert – these are my top tips for seeing the world on a budget, from taxi haggling to avoiding planes

Travelling the world and experiencing a different culture can be a life-defining part of youth, whether it’s a month spent interrailing in Europe or full-blown gap year before entering the world of work.  

While certain destinations are more affordable than others, travelling naturally racks up costs, from transport to accommodation. Interest in budget travel has been rising over the years, with hashtags around travelling on a budget earning more than 400 million views on TikTok. 

That’s why Jessica Bollinger, travel advisor from leading gap year specialists KILROY has shared six tips for travelling on a budget to maximise the experience, regardless of what’s in your bank account – including how to win a three-week adventure worth up to €5,000 (£4,280) with the Kilroy Explorer Program. 

Haggle for local transport  

“In many countries in Asia – like Indonesia, India, the Philippines, and Thailand – one of the main forms of public transport is a tuktuk or tricycle. In many places, it’s totally acceptable to haggle for a lower price,” says Jessica. 

“Agree on this with your driver before the journey starts because often, they’ll upcharge for a tourist. Just be respectful; while drivers will expect haggling, pushing too much or asking for an overly reduced price could rub them up the wrong way.” 

Choose LAND transport over air  

“An overnight bus or train will usually be far cheaper than flying. It may take longer to get somewhere but embracing slow travel protects the pennies and often offers amazing views of a country that you wouldn’t experience on a flight. It’s also far better for the environment.” 

Eat like a local 

“Trying the local food is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in the culture and have an authentic experience, but continually dining out can eat into your budget – especially in cities or by landmarks.  

“One way you can save money is to leave the tourist district behind and see where the locals are eating. Whether street vendors or restaurants, they’ll likely be cheaper with even tastier dishes.  

“You can also plan your food needs ahead of time, like booking accommodation with a kitchen so you can eat in sometimes and packing your day bag with snacks.” 

Opt for hand luggage only 

“Travelling with only hand luggage will save you lots of money as you won’t have to pay extra to put a case in the hold. A 40-litre rucksack is allowed on most planes as hand luggage, but rest assured you can still take a smaller rucksack for your day-to-day belongings. Be strict with yourself and remember you can always buy items like shampoo out there.”

Pick your accommodation wisely 

“Hostels (where you stay with other travellers) or homestays (where you reside with a host) are usually much more affordable than a hotel. They’re a great way to meet and make memories with others. Use apps like Agoda and HostelWorld to find the best deals; many places will provide breakfast and offer cheap transport deals that you can book with them.”  

Travel for free with us 

“We have the perfect opportunity for budding explorers on a budget. One young person in the UK has the chance to win a gap year trip worth up to €5,000 (£4,280) courtesy of our new Explorer Program 

“They’ll become an official KILROY content creator for the trip, living the ‘travel influencer’ life for a few weeks and sharing their experiences with the world.  

“Locations span the globe and the lucky winner could find themselves exploring Vietnam, Tanzania or New Zealand to name a few. Not many opportunities will give you the chance to travel with minimal costs. Submit your entry by the 11th of April.” 

What’s not to love about seeing more of the world while spending less? Adventure is calling – happy exploring! 

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