Ways to save money when traveling overseas
Planning a big overseas trip is exciting. There’s so much to do, organize and buy that it’s easy to forget some of the basic practical things, like what sort of bank account will allow you easy, safe access to your money while you’re trotting all over the globe. Are you going to need access to funds in the sorts of places where ATMs are few and far between?
Will you be visiting countries where people are likely to speak your language, or not? What sort of protection will you have if you get hurt or your luggage is lost? These are all important considerations when you’re planning your next overseas trip. Below are a few more savings tips you might find helpful.
Some transaction accounts charge exorbitant fees to process money transfers. Take some time to do the maths and work out the cheapest way of getting money to you while you’re traveling. It will probably not be practical to open a new, foreign bank account in every new place you visit. If you’re planning a working holiday, research the best account for yourself and see how well it will travel.
Also, find out if any money you earn overseas can easily and inexpensively be deposited into this account. You might find the simplest solution is to set up a credit card just for your trip. Have all incoming funds deposited onto the card, and use it to pay for all expenses. Be aware that there will probably be some situations where you will still need to pay cash, and if you do decide to travel with a debit/credit card, pay careful attention to the balance as you go along.
You’ll need some kind of plan for spending and saving while you’re traveling. No one likes coming home to a massive debt they’ll spend years working off. Look at the trip you’re planning and set aside a set amount to be spent in each location.
Remember to quarantine funds for travel costs, any payable duty, and taxes and, if you can, keep a small amount in reserve for emergencies – you never know what can happen when you’re a long, long way from home.
Some people never take out travel insurance; they think they don’t need it. This can be a false economy. While travel insurance does cost money, you can minimize the cost by only paying for the exact time period you’ll be away. If you get sick or injured while you’re traveling, your insurance will defray any medical costs. The possibility of paying these in full without an insurer is undoubtedly the biggest risk in this equation. Ambulance or helicopter rides and hospital stays can cost tens of thousands of dollars in a country where you will not be covered by their health system, so taking out travel insurance at a modest premium for the period you’ll be away is actually saving.
There are so many costs involved in traveling – pinning down where you can make some savings is relatively easy. Basically, it pays to shop around for money deals, insurance deals, and of course, flights and accommodation offers.
Do you have any tips on saving for a big trip? What works for you? Let others know via the comments box below.