TRAVELLING CAN BE VERY EXPENSIVE, BUT IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE. TRAVELLING ON A BUDGET AND FOR ALMOST FREE IS GETTING MORE AND MORE POSSIBLE THESE DAYS. BEFORE YOU CAN ENJOY YOUR HOLIDAY DESTINATION YOU, OF COURSE, HAVE TO GET THERE.
Since I want to share with you the safest ways of travelling, unfortunately, transportation is never truly free. But I will share with you cheapest options there are. If you feel confident and safe enough to hitchhike, this would be free, but I wouldn’t recommend it.
If you are heading somewhere within driving distance, there are several sites that can help you find a cheap ride. By carpooling you can cut the costs of petrol when you own a car or get a cheap ride towards your destination. There are websites and forums that give travellers the opportunity to connect with other travellers who are heading in the same direction. Link up with them and hitch a ride or when you go with your own car pick up fellow travellers and save on petrol.
The websites that provide these services are:
- Lonely Planet Travel Forums
I personally have the most experience with BlaBlaCar. The site is very easy to use and very trustworthy. You can make a profile for free; add a car if you have one and place or search for trips.
When you want to take a trip that is not within driving distance, you’re going to need to start travel hacking. This may sound dangerous and illegal but let me tell you a little bit about it.
What is travel hacking?
Travel hacking is essentially the act of accumulating a tonne of rewards points and cashing those in for free flights around the world. These points could come from credit cards, frequent flyer programs or contest for example. It takes some time to rack up the points, so planning ahead is key for this one.
The first thing to do is to sign up for any frequent flyer programs with every airline that you fly with, this might not be possible for all airlines cause some have very strict rules about it. You can also sign up for credit cards that offer airline miles in exchange for every pound, euro or dollar spent.
There are also other ways to find cheap flights, but, what you should know it that finding cheap flights takes time. So don’t think you will find the cheapest flight after a few minutes, you need to be committed to doing a bit of research over a few weeks or sometimes months even. But it will definitely be worth it once you find that amazing deal that takes you where you really want to go for relatively nothing.
- Use incognito mode
Every ticket website has cookies and will, unfortunately, use these cookies to increase the ticket prices that you’ve shown interest in before. By using incognito mode or incognito browsers you can prevent you ticket prices from increasing.
- Shop on Tuesdays and Wednesdays
The rumours are true: Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the best days to look at flights.
In my experience, I have found that airfares tend to be cheaper when you are looking on these days (in a private browser, of course). Airlines sometimes release their weekly prices after the weekend, so these days are usually the best to find those cheaper prices.
The general public is saving their travel planning for the weekend when they “have more time,” so naturally the prices tend to increase when more people are going to be looking. Friday-Sunday tends to be the worst days to look at tickets because of the typical price flux.
- Travel with flexible times and dates
The best way to get an awesome deal is to be flexible with your travel schedule. If you are able to leave at any time on any day, use this to your advantage!
Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays tend to be great days to find the price differences. People tend to travel most on the weekends, so use these days to find better prices.
Early morning – think 7:00 am take off – and late night flights are usually the cheapest because not as many people want to be on these.
- Consult multiple sources
Everyone has his or her go-to websites for booking travel, but when trying to find the cheapest flight you shouldn’t stick to it. Sometimes you’ll find a cheaper deal on the other websites, so I never just use a one-and-done method.
- Get refunds when your flight is delayed
If your flight is delayed because of some technical difficulties or because the plane is late, there is a possibility to get your money back and sometimes even more. The policy for these cases is always described on the website of the airline. Keep in mind that the weather is no valid reason to ask for your money back since the airline can’t control the weather.
Enjoy your travels!