Advice Budget

18 Ways to Save Money for Travel

Whether your goal is to travel full time or just to travel more, you need a certain something to get started. Yes, I’m talking money, honey! Here are some of my suggestions to help you save money for travel experiences of your dreams.

  1. Sell Your Old Junk: Maybe your closet is full of clothes you don’t wear anymore or you have old electronics laying around. Sell your stuff at second hand stores, a yard sale, Poshmark, Let Go, or eBay!
  2. Money Saving Challenge: ” My personal favorite money saving trick is the 52 Week Challenge. It’s such an awesome concept and easy to do! On week 1 you add $1, on week 2 you add $2, on week 3 you add $3, and so on. By the end of the challenge you end up with an extra $1,378! Creating and achieving a budget goal is so much fun.
  3. Pay Yourself For It: Say you land free tickets to a concert, an amusement park, a sporting event, etc. Even though the event is free, you can take the amount it would’ve cost (example: NHL hockey game = $70) and put the price of that ticket into a savings account. Another example would be if you want to go out for lunch during the week, but end up eating what you packed. You can take that $15 that you would’ve spent on lunch and save it in a separate account or jar. It adds up quickly!
  4. Freelance Writing: What was once a hobby that I used to do for free, now brings in a nice second income to fund my travels.
  5. Delay and Walk Away: Work on those impulse buys! Yes I know, way easier said than done, so try this. Give it a few days, and if you’re still thinking about that cute dress or craving that delicious meal at your favorite restaurant, go for it! You’ll be surprised how often you end up not even thinking twice about it.
  6. Drink Less: At $10-15 per drink, that can easily double or triple your dinner bill. I’ll usually get one (if that) then sip on soda water with a ton of fresh squeezed lime.  Sometimes I find myself craving that more than a cocktail. Not only have I lost weight since doing this, but I’ve saved a lot of money skipping the drinks on most occasions.
  7. Cook: Your dining out dollars go a long way in the grocery store.  Don’t get me wrong, I write about restaurants in addition to travel, and I love going out to eat.  However, it adds up! Going out to eat is a great way to catch up with friends, but those $10-20 takeaway lunches and dinners you’re getting alone throughout the week can be pretty unnecessary and pricey. Buy a few go-to items and pack your lunch for work.
  8. Find Free Events: In my hometown, it seems like there are always free events going on, especially in the summer! You can see a free live band instead of a concert or see a play in the park instead of a movie. There are so many free options such as free comedy shows, festivals, dance classes, outdoor movies, art galleries, and more! Do some research and find some free fun in your city.
  9. Miles Credit Cards: Get a miles card! I originally applied for it when I was preparing to travel to Europe to avoid transaction fees (my bank charged 3% on each purchase, so this is a great perk alone), but since having the card, I’ve received multiple free flights and a generous amount of cash back! I use the Venture Card because there isn’t even an annual fee, but you’ll want to research various cards to find the best one for you.
  10. Garden: Ok, a bit random but think about it. Fresh produce can get expensive and you can easily grow your own lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, squash, cucumbers, herbs, and more which will save you a pretty penny on your grocery bill. Even if you don’t have the space, a simple windowsill herb garden of basil, parsley, and mint that can be added nutrients to salads, shakes and more.
  11. Look For Deals and Coupons: When my friends, family and boyfriend plan something fun like a comedy night, a jet boat tour, kayaking, etc. I search discount websites such as Groupon and Living Social that often have fantastic deals saving you tons of money on activities you were going to do anyway!
  12. PTO: Use your benefits! I see so many people let their vacation time build up and in some cases they lose it completely. Use the time that’s given to you. It’s important to unwind, so you can be fresh and ready to take on new challenges at work. Some of us simply can’t quit our jobs and have to balance our career with our need to explore.  Last year, I traveled to 15 different destinations while working full time, volunteering, freelance writing, and creating my website.  You can, too!
  13. Enough With The $5 Coffees Everyday: If you make your own coffee and skip spending $5 for a fancy shmancy latte, you can save A LOT of money. I went to the extreme and tried to give it up all together. I crack every now and then, but for the most part I don’t drink it anymore. That’s saved me hundreds of dollars every year!
  14. Walk or Bike When Possible: If you’re heading to meet a friend a few blocks away or running up to the grocery store for a few things, consider walking or biking a few times a week. Not only is it healthy, but you’ll save money on gas and it’s better for the environment.
  15. Workout Outdoors: Lately I’ve noticed cities providing free yoga, barre, aerobics, and dance classes throughout the summer.  Don’t be afraid to take advantage of that. In addition to the free workout classes, the warm summer weather make it the perfect time to also explore parks and to check off beautiful hikes on your list. It’s a great way to feed that adventurous side of yours for free.
  16. Meet with a Financial Advisor: There’s a company in my city called the Establishment, where they offer free financial advice in a series of classes.  You’ll leave feeling motivated to start planning your finances for future expenses and travel!
  17. Be Smart When Traveling: My friend once called me and said “I found 50 cent round trip bus tickets to NYC, so we’re going.” How amazing is that?! Sign up for deal alerts, research the best days to fly, what airlines offer stopovers, and more! You’ll eventually be surprised to discover how affordable travel can be.
  18. Expensive Doesn’t Always Mean Better: This is a common misconception. When I was in Salerno, Italy with my two girlfriends we went to a small, family owned restaurant called Casa Rispoli. They’re not used to getting tourists in that area and wanted to provide us with a 7 course tasting menu of their finest, local dishes. Now, I’ve previously mentioned I write about food, critiquing dishes and restaurants for local publications. I’ve tried many fantastic meals, but this one takes the cake! Fresh seafood, creative ingredients, specialty items, a pour of champagne…for just $30! It was, until this day, the best dining experience of my life, and it didn’t break the bank!

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  • Zhanna August 16, 2017 at 4:51 pm

    Jessica, it’s such a good post! I love it! So helpful and inspiring. I’m definitely going to try 52 weeks challenge. I like your idea about freelance writing. I’ve looks into it but haven’t started it yet. Would you mind to give some advices on how to start and where to be published? Thank you in advance.

  • Jessica August 26, 2017 at 5:43 am

    Hi Zhanna!

    To get started, you might have to do some work for free and create your own wordpress blog for exposure. Even though I’ve been writing for years, I still do this sometimes. Once you have some writing samples from your free work or your own website, you can create an online portfolio on and start reaching out to local publications! Continue to build your portfolio and look for opportunities. It’s fun work, and you’d be surprised what some of them pay! I remember when some of my editors would respond to my emails and now they come to me with multiple assignments a month and asking me to pitch ideas. You have to be persistent!

  • Jessica August 26, 2017 at 5:44 am

    *wouldn’t respond to my emails

  • TheWickedSoul September 1, 2017 at 3:11 am

    such a great post! I am going to sell off my junk and save some money for my next trip 🙂

  • StephanieRMontgomery October 17, 2017 at 5:45 am

    Excellent post! I must thank you for this informative read. I hope you will post again soon.

  • Hayyaa September 5, 2019 at 5:01 pm

    I just love this article. I am surely going to follow this. Thanks

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