On a regular weekday, you are staring at the supermarket’s reduced items with your last 2€ cash. After long reflections, you finally find a sandwich that fits your budget and can give you enough nutrition throughout the day. When you finally get to the till, you find out that they accept only cards. And you start blaming yourself because you never listen to other people’s travel hacks and advice.
Do you think this story is fictional? Well, it is. But it’s inspired by silly mistakes people made during their travels. Traveling around is the most meaningful experience in the world. You can meet new people, encounter new cultures, taste exotic food. However, this fabulous travel gig can quickly turn into a nightmare without the right organization and research.
So, if you are planning to travel post-pandemic, here are the best travel hacks ideas to save money while traveling and make your Instagram profile a reality.
ProTips To Plan The Best Travel Hacks
Whether you are a tourist or traveling as a digital nomad, you can’t skip travel planning. Booking accommodation, flights, and checking on currency requires time. Here are three crucial travel hacks to consider before starting planning your journey:
Save Money For 6 Months
You never know what could go wrong while traveling. For example, you might be stuck for months in an expensive hotel while the world shuts down because of a global pandemic. That is to say, even with great online job opportunities, you need to save for at least 6 months worth of living.
Look For Visas And Digital Nomad Initiatives
A positive consequence of the pandemic is the rise of visa schemes and initiatives for digital nomads. From Europe or South America to Cape Town, you can find attractive visa and tax arrangements for long-stay digital nomads. Some visas can be expensive, but others allow a free tax year and other benefits. And if you plan to travel to one continent, you can apply for one of these programs to have a solid base while exploring local amenities. Being part of these initiatives simplifies bureaucracy and guarantees health and insurance coverage.
ProTips: Before leaving, make a local SIM card to save money on calls with accommodation and restaurants.
Get In Touch With Your International Friends
Last but not least, never underestimate the power of networking. Are you still in contact with your Chinese friend on Facebook since you attended an English course ages ago? Contact her and ask for advice about hospitality and transportation. Call back everyone you know in the area, or search for Reddit channels where you can find the necessary information. Who knows, you might even find free accommodation without even looking!
Ultimate Travel Hacks to Help Digital Nomads Save Money
Now, let’s go straight to the best ways to save money while traveling:
Accommodation: Unusual Travel Hacks for Saving Money
The first travel expense to cut is accommodation. And if you find the right arrangements, it can be a solution to save money.
For example, you can find several opportunities to work in exchange for accommodation on platforms like WWOOF (World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms), Worldpackers, or Workaway. From hostels to farms to social projects, the deal is usually 24h for a week of work with the organization. This solution allows you to keep your remote job while working and living with other travelers and locals.
In the same vein, housesitting is an excellent solution to blend work and living necessities. In addition to free accommodation, some families are willing to pay a small fee and give enough time off to visit the city. Platforms like Housecarer or Au Pair International offer numerous opportunities worldwide with an accessible subscription fee. However, if you already have a full-time remote job, this solution can be challenging to keep up in the long run.
If you don’t fancy getting an extra job for free accommodation, you can rely on networking. On digital nomads’ Facebook pages or Couchsurfing, you can find people willing to leave their houses or pets for traveling. It’s a great starting point to find a long-term solution on Airbnb or hotels promoting deals for digital nomads. The longer you stay, the better deal you get. And you can explore local transport and affordable accommodation for short visits.
Looking for a sustainable bank? Check out this article to know the best banks for digital nomads!
Travel Hacks for Flying and Saving Money
Transportation is the second significant expense for travelers. Here, the sooner you book and plan, the better it is.
For flights, Skyscanner is the best platform for digital nomads to monitor. It selects travel options based on pricing. In addition, you can select an entire month to compare daily prices before choosing a date. Or, you can simply type the country and see the cheapest city to decide your final destination. Finally, if you don’t have the next destination, you can leave the option blank, and the platform will suggest the cheapest flights from there.
Now you’re done with the first part, considering you’ve secured your rental. But once you are there, you should check public transport, car sharing, and cycle paths. In some countries, Uber and taxes are quite expensive, and you have numerous cheaper options around – for example, in most cities, electric scooters and bikes you can get everywhere with a sharing app.
Insurance And Banking for The Best Travel Hacks in Europe And Beyond
Among the travel hack essentials, banking and international travel insurance have the top spots. You can’t picture how much money you lose with ATMs and silly accidents. And before you realize it, you lost a week worth of food shopping because you had a Visa Card instead of a Mastercard.
Online banking like N26 or Revult are designed for travelers and digital nomads. You can save on currency exchange rates, ATMs, and payments. In addition, these banks make it easier to apply for a visa and get international payments. With hashtags like #digitalnomadproblems, or dedicated Facebook pages, you can also ask direct questions to find the best solution based on your destination.
Remember when we said you need at least 6 months’ worth of expenses? Well, you also need travel insurance. For example, World Nomads is one of the most reliable, affordable, and flexible companies for travelers. In addition to your health care, it covers your work and tech equipment. So, if you are a video maker traveling with expensive tools, this is one of the best options. However, remember you need a permanent address, and if you plan to move or Couchsurfing isn’t doable. In this case, SafetyWing is another affordable and reliable option for those without an address.
Think Global, Eat Local: Top Travel Hack in Europe And Beyond
Once you’ve chosen an affordable location, food is the last necessity that becomes a big expense. Eating in restaurants and cafes (especially when working as a digital nomad) can cost you as much as a coworking space.
So, you need to be smart to make it work. For example, you can start exploring shops and markets to purchase local food and find out areas without tourists. And you can look for libraries (if you have your hotspot, most city libraries don’t provide free Wi-Fi), bring your thermos with coffee and homemade lunch, saving your money. And when you need a change of scenario, you can look for bars and cafes to work and meet other travelers.
Time To Get Ready
To recap, the best travel hacks to remember are planning, smart accommodation, and local food. After the pandemic, a lot of things changed. And the world is more ready than ever to accommodate digital nomads’ travel needs. So, get on your laptop and start your research for your dream journey – saving money and having fun!