The one thing that sucks about travel is how much money it costs to get ourselves out the door. Paying ahead for planes and accommodation is a bit of a scary experience at first because it’s a lot of money leaving your bank account at once. If you really think about it though, you are spending a lot of money all the time without realizing it since it’s in smaller increments. Here are five ways that you can save some money in your every day life!
1. *Insert local coffee hang out here* I’m a huge offender in this area. I love going out to coffee with friends. Or when I’m out anywhere I can make up any excuse to swing by a Starbucks/Timothys/Tim Hortons/Second Cup (I’m really not too picky). One drink alone can cost upwards of $5 CDN! If you’re doing that daily on your way to work or school, that’s around $35 a week which equals $140 a month! That’s a huge chunk that you could be putting away for your travels. But let’s not be harsh, once in a while is fine! But try to tone it down (ahem… note to self).
2. Find alternatives to restaurants. I’m not a huge foodie, so this isn’t much of an issue for me. Going out to restaurants can cost a fair bit, depending on where you go and what you buy. There are good alternatives to having a meal with friends. You could pack a picnic and find a nice scenic place to eat, chat and explore for the afternoon. You could also have cooking parties and invite friends over and cook a meal together. Add in some wine and music and it’s the perfect date night at home. Using food already in your fridge from the grocery store will get you a lot more bang for your buck than paying for one meal in a typical restaurant.
3. Hang at home. Movie night has become much more exciting thanks to the invention of Netflix. There’s a ton of selection for everybody, and you don’t have to worry about trying to sneak in some cheap snacks or eating stale popcorn! Also, what can beat a cozy pyjama party, amirite?
4. Take public transit. I’m lucky and get to use my mom’s car when I’m meeting up with friends. Since I’m just a secondary driver, my insurance is super cheap and I don’t use the car often so my mom doesn’t ask me to add any gas. When I’m going for longer periods of time downtown Toronto to visit friends, I definitely take transit. Yes there are sometimes delays, and it can get crowded, but it’s worth it! You can save hundreds of dollars a month not having to put out money on gas, insurance and financing/lease costs. One of my best friends is spending nearly $1000 a month on this ($12, 000/ year)!!!! I personally can’t bring myself to put out this kind of money for a vehicle when I can go from one end of Toronto to the other on $3!
5. Save on the healthy stuff too! It’s a big deal in some groups to go to Whole Foods and buy tasty health packed drinks (I’m almost as guilty as spending on Starbucks!) But because of all the nutrients you’re getting, it comes with a high price tag. You can also reap nutritional benefits at home by making your own drinks. Also, if you frequent places like Booster Juice, the drinks you make at home have a better chance of being healthier! Again, it doesn’t mean you can’t indulge at all, but everything in moderation.
There are so many ways to start saving money for upcoming trips from home, so now I want your tips and tricks! What do you implement in your life to help cut costs and save for travel?