With the main travel season approaching, now is a good time to start thinking about how you can minimize vacation costs while maximizing opportunities.
Transportation makes up the bulk of the price of the trip, but beyond the plane ticket, travel experts say there are a number of small adjustments you can make to keep costs down.
Here are six ways to get the most out of your trip without breaking the bank, even when traveling abroad:
1. Know how to pay for things before you get there
If you are traveling outside of the United States, call your bank and credit card company before you leave. Not only will this prevent fraud alerts and your accounts from freezing, it will also let you know about potential fees you may incur and help you plan ahead.
For your debit card:
Most ATMs charge a fee of $ 3 to $ 7 per transaction and will confirm that you agree to the fee before processing your withdrawal. But many banks also charge an international fee, which you will not be advised of at the kiosk. Consider opening an account with a bank that waives international fees, or at least avoid multiple withdrawals.
For your credit card:
“Foreign exchange fees are banks ‘and credit card companies’ dirty little secrets,” says an entrepreneur and frequent traveler Richard Moross. “Those who travel regularly need a better solution for card and cash payments.”
Consider applying for a credit card does not charge any foreign transaction fees. It is essential to avoid cash advances, for which you have to pay high transaction and interest fees.
If you want to change money on arrival, says travel blogger and bestselling author Matthew Kepnes, don’t do so at the airport.
“The rates you see at airports are the worst. Never use an exchange office there unless you absolutely have to,” Kepnes wrote on his Blog.
You can avoid exchange fees entirely by using your debit card and withdrawing cash from an ATM.
2. Take medication you think you won’t need
Ibuprofen, vitamins, cough drops and allergy medication are often overpriced at airports and in convenience stores in tourist areas.
To avoid the headache of paying double or triple the regular price, pack a small bag of medication you may need and keep it in your hand luggage, writes travel blogger Caroline Eubanks on “Your packing list. ”
She recommends keeping prescription drugs in the pharmaceutical bottle with the original label on. Prescription liquid medications are not subject to TSA restrictions, according to the administration’s website, but be sure to follow them the extra steps to avoid unforeseen problems.
3. Avoid dynamic currency conversions
Some companies offer to conduct your transaction in US dollars. Sounds smart, doesn’t it? It’s not, says Nick Ewen, who writes for the credit card blog: “The point type. “
This “courtesy” is known as dynamic currency conversion, and it can cost you an additional 5 percent, fees that add up.
4. Pack an empty water bottle and some snacks
A full water bottle will not go through airport security, but an empty one is not a problem. Once you have passed security, fill your bottle with a water fountain so you will have a drink during the trip. Save $ 3 or $ 4 every time you were thirsty and would otherwise buy a drink.
With a handful of granola bars, an apple, or a bag of chips, you also save yourself overpaying for snacks.
5. If possible, write SMS and make calls while using WLAN
SMS and calls abroad can easily add up, so turn off cellular data whenever possible. Some mobile phone providers charge 50 cents for every SMS sent abroad and 20 cents for every SMS received. (Check out your last group text and you’ll see why avoiding these fees is important.)
Check with your carrier about international SMS and calling charges before you leave so you know what additional charges may apply.
FaceTime audio, Skype calls, WhatsApp, and Facebook Messager are some great ways to avoid costly overheads. There are risks associated with using public WiFi, so explore ways to get around protect your data.
6. Wear layers
No matter where you travel, wearing layers is always a smart idea and can save you money in the end.
By wearing a t-shirt or tank top under your clothes, you will be spared the temptation to buy clothes in a gift shop when you feel too warm. And if you’re wearing a long-sleeved shirt or sweater, avoid looking for a blanket for the flight when you’re cold.
Some savvy globetrotters have not only saved money while traveling, but learned how to make it. Visit the 32 years old who give up a comfortable job and earn a steady income while traveling abroad.