If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I just recently returned from a trip to the west coast, Los Angeles and Las Vegas to be exact. It was a somewhat spontaneous trip and I didn’t think I would be able to afford it if I’m being honest. But I actually totally could afford it. I’ve been caught up in my head thinking I can’t do things that I want to do and that’s simply not true. But anyways, that’s a post for another day. Today I wanted to share with you some fun (and not-so-fun) trip details and tricks for traveling on a budget.
Before The Trip, my girls and I decided to split the cost of two checked bags instead of three (one per person). I had to plan a little more than I usually do when I travel, aka NOT throw everything I own in a suitcase. I would be lying if I said it wasn’t challenging, but I actually ended up using even less than I brought! We also took the red eye coming back home. It was a little rough but our flight was dirt cheap! Also try to plan your trip so you are coming and leaving during the week. We flew out early on a Friday and flew back over the following Wednesday evening. Just be careful of the jet lag!
The flight… I woke up to 60 mph winds the morning of our flight…what?! I literally sat in bed for about 30 minutes hoping my flight wouldn’t get cancelled. Luckily I made it to the airport in one piece and our flight wasn’t in fact cancelled! But the turbulence on this flight..wow. Just wow. My friend described this flight as ‘a Final Destination scene’ to give you a better idea. No real advice for this one except to keep breathing.
The hotel…. So to save money, we stayed with my friend’s grandmother who lives in LA. Honestly guys, if you’re traveling on a budget and know someone where you are going, ask if you can crash with them. This saved us from paying for four nights of hotels. We also got home cooked meals, who doesn’t love that?! If you’re going abroad, consider staying in a hostel, or airbnb.
The car…. We did rent a car to drive to Vegas, but while we were in LA, we borrowed my someone’s car. If you have this ability, or are staying somewhere within walking distance to a lot of places, take that into consideration. If you do rent a car, check to see if your insurance will cover your rental. There is always an option to purchase insurance through the rental company, but if you can add it to your insurance temporarily, do that and save some money!
The food… When traveling on a budget, don’t focus too much on eating or drinking. This trip, to save some money, I cut back on drinking to pretty much one day. When it came to the food, I searched the menu for cheaper options. Some could argue that part of traveling and culture is the food, and while I completely agree, I don’t think you need to spend big bucks either. Before you go on your trip, make a list of foods or restaurants that you NEED to try and budget for that. Splurge for a couple meals but keep the rest pretty simple. Also, don’t eat grocery store sushi or you may get food poisoning…..! Yes this happened to me and it was HORRIBLE.
Hopefully these tips are a little helpful for you! I will definitely be implementing them for my next budget friendly adventure!