How to optimize your travel costs

Akbar travels

Optimize your travel costs

Travel is something that seems to have entrenched deeply in our DNA’s. Having said so, we are constantly on the lookout to maximize our travel experiences and also look for ways and means to cut our travel costs. Of course, cutting costs does not mean compromising on quality, what it means is planning intelligently and pruning costs wherever it is possible through more research. Money thus saved is ploughed back into the travel budget once more. This means that when you optimize your travel costs you get to travel more, and that is something we really love.

Let us look at some of the major components that constitute the total travel expenditure and see by what means they can be optimized. Here are few travel tips to optimize your travel costs.

Optimize your travel costs by factoring in Transportation Costs

Akbar travels

Whether it is international or domestic travel, the transportation cost accounts for a major chunk of the travel budget. This includes the cost of flight, train or bus tickets from and to your destination. In addition, this would also include airport, railway station, or bus station transfers as well as local transport within your destination. One can save a significant chunk of money by focusing on this one aspect of travel costs. This can be done in a very simple way. One just needs to devote some time and have patience as well as plan in advance. We usually plan a couple of months in advance and this gives us the best deals on flights. The prices tend to increase nearer the date of actual flying, hence booking in advance is definitely a prudent move.

We look at various travel portals and check prices before finalizing our bookings. It is surprising to note that there may be a difference in the prices for the same flights across portals owing to periodic deals or offers. Recently while researching for an upcoming travel, we came across Akbar Travels,  check out their site here. We knew that this company was a reputed name in the travel industry in India and offered end to end travel solutions, but were pleasantly surprised that they had a full-fledged online travel portal as well. They had quite a few offers and deals. The prices seemed to be competitive.

You can clearly see the difference:

 On Akbar travels site

Akbar travels
                                                                              

 

Akbar travels

On competitor’s site

Akbar travels

   On competitor’s site

What added value to their offerings was the fact that they also had the facility of booking airport transfers as well as they had their own fleet of buses for travel to interior town or cities. Thus, this was useful as it provided a one stop shop for our needs.

So, the takeaway is to do research and look for the best deal in flight, train or bus tickets and to book as early as possible. Remember the early bird gets the worm!

Optimize your travel costs through Accommodation Costs

Akbar travels

This is another major component that needs to be optimized in the travel budget. Depending on your style of travel, this can really shoot up. If you are a luxury or family traveler who is at home only in comfortable and luxurious hotels and not the backpacking sort who can be comfortable in hostels, then accommodation is always going to eat away a major part of your travel budget. It is our experience, especially when we have traveled in some of the expensive countries of Europe, that accommodation burns a hole in our pockets.

The way to try and optimize the costs incurred on accommodation without compromising on quality is to again plan in advance and book. Also, look out for those special offers which travel portals offer which can sometimes result in quite substantial savings. The other trick is to plan your travels to a destination at a time when lesser people are heading towards it, this will result in cheaper hotel rates as well as give a better travel experience.

Optimize your travel costs through Food Costs

Akbar travels

Expenditure on food is something that one would not like to prune, after all you need the energy to explore new destinations and this cannot be done on an empty stomach! However, we have found that it works out economical if we include breakfast and dinner in our hotel booking plan. This works out quite economical and also one can start the day fortified with a good breakfast and explore the local food for lunch. At the end of the day’s exploration you know that there is a nice dinner followed by a cozy bed awaiting you. This is indeed a comforting thought and removes a lot of hassles of scouting for dinner options in a new place.

Optimize your travel costs through Foreign Exchange

Akbar travels

During an international travel buying and selling currencies involves a loss as there is always a difference between the two. It definitely helps if you get a good rate and the service is provided by the portal through which you are booking your tickets and hotels. We found that Akbar Travels provides this service as well and offers competitive exchange rates.

Optimize your travel costs through Visa Costs

Akbar travels

In the case of international travel, visa costs could be substantial based on the country that you are visiting. Though many of the countries now have online visa applications that you can do yourself, for some you need to approach the respective embassies. This of course involves time and cost. It is helpful in such cases if the hassles of visa application were handled by a service provider at a reasonable cost. We found that Akbar Travels handles all visa formalities too at a reasonable and competitive rate.

These are some of the components of the travel budget that can be focused on when planning, to design a cost effective as well as satisfying travel itinerary. This will help optimize your travel costs.

What are your hacks to optimize your travel costs? Do share your feedback through our comments section.

 

optimize your travel costs

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optimize your travel costs

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65 thoughts on “How to optimize your travel costs

  1. Iza Abao Reply

    As much as possible, I try to book in advance. It is one of the best ways to get a great deal. I also like to visit a place when it is not peak season. In terms of food, I buy from groceries and convenience stores. However, I like to treat myself sometimes because it is nice to have an amazing dining experience in another country.

  2. Tami Reply

    Good tips! We use them all to make our trips as economical as possible. Another way to stretch your money is to travel where the monetary exchange rate is favorable for you. For example, we are traveling from the US to Canada later this year, and the Canadian dollar is devalued compared to the US dollar, making our trip much more affordable!

  3. Abhinav Singh Reply

    Those are some very valuable tips. Number one priority during planning a trip is the cost factor, at least for me. I agree with you. I save a lot by optimizing my cost on accommodation and food. As you said, intelligent planning makes all the difference.

  4. Danik Reply

    Great tips here and some valuable ones at that. When I plan a trip, I always keep an eye of the cost 🙂

  5. heather Reply

    I love all of this. I always try to book a hotel that has free real breakfast (not just a muffin). It saves me money and I don’t have to get up and go looking for food. I don’t want to get up and have to go on a search for a restaurant! 😉

  6. Sarah Bailey Reply

    This is such a great post, travelling can cost so much and it is always good to know way to try and bring the down a little, gives you more money to have fun with.

  7. Neely Moldovan Reply

    These are super great and helpful tips. Always looking to save money when we travel!

  8. Doria Reply

    We travel a lot so we try to get the best rates by putting a lot of time and energy into tracking flight rates and hotel rates non-stop. It’s a lot of work, but with a family of 4 it saves us a LOT!

  9. Heather Reply

    Wow! You’ve really done your research. I would be clueless at exchange rates and I’m even more confused about competitive exchange rates. It’s good to do your research before you travel.

  10. Jenn Reply

    This is a great list of advice. I love to travel, but it’s not in our budget very often. When we do, I work hard to fit in as much fun as possible.

  11. Trish Reply

    Great tips! I really like the idea of including breakfast and dinner in the hotel booking plan. I can see how that would be a good savings.

  12. Claudia Krusch Reply

    I am always looking for the best deal on my transportation. I will have to check out Akbar Travels. I have a few trips to plan and a limited budget.

  13. Franc Ramon Reply

    Planning can really save you a lot. You get to save on discount, promos and transportation, accommodation and other cost can be more affordable when booked in advanced.

  14. Eloise Reply

    great tips for planning finances when traveling. transportation is a major cost! My younger brother went backpacking in Ireland last year and I learned quite a bit from his travels. great post!

  15. Lisa Reply

    We lessen our travel costs by doing exactly what you suggested – travel in the off season. We also try to book as far in advance as we can.

  16. Shruti Prabhu Reply

    These are some great tips. We just booked a room in Chennai and found a cheaper listing by doing a bit of research of a couple of websites. Like Lisa said in the previous comment, we also try to travel off season – less cost and less crowds as well.

  17. Debra J Hawkins Reply

    These are all such great tips. I am always looking to cut our travel costs to help make it so we can travel more! I picked up some new things here!

  18. Neha Saini Reply

    Great tips for planning finances while traveling. The major cost is involved in transportation. These tips are really helpful, if we’ll go for such packages then we can reduce the trip cost. Great post 🙂

  19. Chris Reply

    In regards flights, you hit the nail on the head when you said early, but realistically, even earlier than 2-3 months out if possible. Most airlines release their fares 10-11 months out from the travel date and at this point the availability will be bet, as well as seats in the cheapest booking classes.

    When it comes to food, a cheap way we found to make our funds go further, was to cook for ourselves often, or prepare lunches for when we’d be out for the day (it also meant we needn’t stop our explorations).

    Finally, a good way to avoid losses in currency conversions, is to forego cash when you can and use your credit card, especially if you can find yourself a travel specific one, which may have better conversion rates, or waive foreign transaction fees, etc

  20. Travel with Mei and Kerstin Reply

    Great tips! We travel a lot, so we usually choose our destinations according to the price of the transportations. When we find a cheap flight, we never hesitate to book it, and the planning can start from there. 🙂 We’ve never used Akbar Travels though. But we’ll definitely try it next time.

  21. sara Reply

    These are such great travel tips for my next trip! Thank you for sharing.

  22. Maurene Cab Reply

    I think the biggest portion of your travel cost is transportation. I agree that it is important to compare prices to cut cost.

  23. katriza Reply

    Ugh! I’m always struggling with overspending during travel and these are some great ways to optimize the money i got! Thanks!

  24. Amanda Reply

    Such great, money saving tips. Traveling can be so expensive and I am always afraid to cut too many corners. Great advice!

  25. Kita Bryant Reply

    I go through every leg and aspect of the trip and set a budget and check for the cheapest options possible. I always like to make sure it’s not taking away from anything though.

  26. Suruchi Reply

    These are some of the great points you have listed. Honestly, we have changed our plans at times because of the huge expenses. We try to plan our trips beforehand but are never successful. So only researching on the accommodation helps us to save. We had never heard about Akbar travels but for sure now going to try it after your post.

  27. sherianne Reply

    Great information! I have a travel credit card with no foreign transaction fees and recently I have not been converting money. It’s risky but it has worked out for me so far.

  28. Catvills Reply

    We always take advantage of seat sales. It is a great way to save on airfare. Booking a flight 6 months in advance also offers good rates. Thanks for the tips on saving on travel costs. You did offer really sound advice.

  29. Genie Patra Reply

    some good tips you have here! When i travel i try to save money by walking because depending on the city I’m in public transportation can be sooo expensive!

  30. melody pittman Reply

    Great suggestions. I think curtailing transportation costs is the big one I’m currently working on. Taking cheaper travel options, renting cars that get much better gas mileage than my gas guzzling Denali, and trying discount air options. I need to practice more of your tricks.

  31. Terri Beavers Reply

    Your post could not have come at a better time for me. I’m traveling this month and again in a couple of months. I want to travel as cheaply as I can. I’m going to use your tips where ever I’ able to make my dollars stretch.

  32. candy Reply

    These are such great suggestions. I always try to save money where it counts so that I can spend money on the things I really want to 🙂 I agree that it’s a great idea to find a hotel that offers free breakfast. A lot of times hotel breakfasts are a little overpriced or there isn’t a convenience store nearby, so you have no choice but to eat hotel food.

  33. Kathi Reply

    There are some great tips in here! Particularly around food. I always try to get accommodation with breakfast included, eat out in a restaurant one meal of the day and do the other meal either with street food or an improvised picnic!

  34. Natalie Reply

    Great tips! I’m always trying to stretch my travel budget as far as I can since that means I get to travel more! 🙂 I will go out of my way to find a free breakfast at a hotel since that cost really can add up: for my husband, daughter, and I to eat breakfast elsewhere, that’s at least $20 that we can save!

  35. Mags Reply

    Great tips. I’m guilty of forgetting to budget sometimes. I could always use a reminder.

  36. PRERNA SINHA Reply

    These are good tips. One of the hacks I use is to mark an accommodation but not book it and check it just one day before my travel. A lot of times the rates have fallen as there might be a lot of cancellations. A lot of websites offer this where you can mark an accommodation and they keep updating you on the price.

  37. Chantell Collins Reply

    I always love reading articles about how to reduce travel costs, even as someone who travels frequently, I always find new information from other travelers. I hadn’t heard of Akbar before and it sounds like a great site.

  38. Nisha Reply

    You’d be knowing that we are leaving tonight…. in an hour’s time. 🙂

    And these tips will definitely come handy though we try to take care of everything.
    Will write about it later.

  39. Reshma Reply

    Some awesome tips here! I have not tried Akbar travels and I’m surprised to see that the rates were better! Tempts me to try this the next time. I totalky agree on the accommodation & food, the ones that dig holes in the pocket after transport!

  40. neha Reply

    These are wonderful tips. These show that even those who are constrained by a budget can travel comfortably if they know where and how to optimize on it. Particularly the accommodation and food options – there’s a lot of optimization that can be done there

  41. sarah Reply

    Some really good advice here. It used to be that waiting for last minute specials was the way to go but it seems that things have changed and now you’re better to book in advance.

  42. Ami Reply

    These are very useful travel hacks. Booking the stay and transportation in advance really helps. And then,one can also, seek the local food to not just reduce costs but also, get some authentic local flavors.

  43. Jenn and Ed Coleman Reply

    Good advice with foreign exchange. I keep thinking that we are doing it wrong. We will have to look into packing the fund exchange with a discount travel site. One could imagine that a they would be low cost providers for both services.

  44. Bell | Wanderlust Marriage Reply

    Great tips, we always check several websites before booking flights and hotels. It is amazing how much you can save! Also for summer travel we love a good picnic in a beautiful spot!

  45. Paige W Reply

    These are some great tips. Factoring in transportation is a huge part of travel. I used travel too quickly to get the most out of the transportation costs. That’s a big part of why I travel slowly now. To optimize my travel costs.

  46. Lisa Reply

    These are really useful tips. I always try to factor in transport and accommodation, but never for food and entertainment! Something to think about for sure 🙂

  47. jenni Reply

    Transportation is normally the biggest cost for me when travelling along with accommodation so I am always after ways to save money. Thanks for sharing these tips

  48. amit Reply

    You have some very practical budget saving tips here, as a long-term budget traveler, you become quite savvy and I completely agree a big chunk of traveling costs go on transport so you really have to shop around, like you said there are lots of varying prices for the same route.

  49. HD Motion Movies Reply

    Preplanning a holiday months before never worked for me….My holiday plans are made 1 or 2 days before, so i cannot book the air tickets or Hotel Rooms for cheap. But i like this way….unplanned vacations are best….

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