How I Manage to Save and Travel at the Same Time

How to save and travel at the same time

I've heard it. Most people would stereotype people who travel often as rich, maraming pera, walang ipon, walang responsibilidad, and the like. But why is that? I would even hear them say, "Kung san san nakakapunta yun no? Daming pera." Bet they don't even know what they're saying. I'm not sure if I'm the right person to say this because I'm not the type who already has traveled the world. I'm not even close to 1/8 of the places I've had yet to visit. But hey, what's certain is the first half of 2016, I've managed to travel at least twice every month. Most of it domestic but to travel is to travel. Whether by land or by air. I'm making this post not just to tell people that, "HEY! You can travel too!", but also to share how I manage to travel that often during the first half of the year. I'm pretty sure everyone I know wants to travel. Because what else can we do in this world and what else can we accomplish in our lives if we're just bound to live it in one place? Some wants to travel but has strict parents.. hmm.. this one, I don't know the answer because fortunately I have awesome parents who lets me travel. But for most of the people I know, main factor is money.

How to save and travel at the same time
Camiguin. Near Sunken Cemetery

Let me tell you this..
  
"BUDGET TRAVELLING IS POSSIBLE"
Let me elaborate this as much as I can.
1. The most important thing. YES! You can travel even though you're tight on budget. But of course, you have to set your priorities straight. So this is how it works. Ever heard of travel funds? Hmm.. No? In the most basic way I can explain, travel funds is the money you keep or save to allot for your future or dream travel destination. So how do you do it..10% or 20% of your salary goes directly to your travel funds. But then again, priorities. If  by chance you have to pay a debt or you have bills to pay.. Set aside first your payment to your debt and/or to your bills then what remains is what you keep in to your savings and your travel funds. 

Ideally, 20% of your salary goes to your savings. 10% goes to your travel funds. But depending on your priorities, this can be flexible. I, for instance, try to save as much as 40-50% of my salary. Then my travel fund roughly consists of 10-20% of my salary. The remaining will then be for my bills, my responsibilities at home, and my allowance. 

If ever there came a time during my travel that I wasn't able to stick to my budget and needs extra cash, I would then lend myself some cash from my savings and pay it through my next salary. But thing is.. DON'T ever exceed on your budget whenever you're travelling because that's where all the money mishaps happen. I know it is hard. It is very hard. But when travelling is one of your priorities then you wouldn't mind saving extra for it. Skip that expensive coffee, skip shopping when you don't really need it. Wants and needs are two very different things. And when you want to travel.. your WANT is your TRAVEL. So if you don't really need anything, do not buy it. Save it or put it in your travel fund. 

How to save and travel at the same time
Baler Mother Falls

2. Airfare deals. Truth be told but if there's no seat sale, then I wouldn't probably travel as much as I do today. Seat sales are heaven sent for budget travelers like me! How I wish I can experience luxurious traveling but it's close to impossible right now. What's important is you can travel and see new places. For those who don't have any idea what seat sales are.. Seat sales are promos from airlines where you can steal an airfare for a low or discounted price. But the catch is, this kind of sales do run out fast because hell yeah.. you can go to Coron for 500 pesos roundtrip!

Now, my tip is to subscribe to airline newsletters so you would be one of the people who knows first whether there are seat sales. Be on the lookout on their social media accounts, check their websites. Most of the time, they give out seat sales during 12MN so better be on the lookout during these hours of the night. Ready your credit/debit card. Fast internet speed, and pray that the odds be ever in your favor. 

How to save and travel at the same time
Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica of Saigon

3.  So now that you know how to save, already booked your ticket.. what's next? Uhuh, accommodation. Piece of advice: SKIP THE HOTEL. Self explanatory. Hotels are expensive. Not all, yes. But if you're a budget traveler, the money you spend in the hotel could already be the money you spend for food, or for entrance tix and such. Thing is, we don't want to spend on unnecessary stuff if we could improvise and do it on a budget friendly way. 

Instead of hotels, there are transients and inns. After all, we just needed a room to leave our bags, a bed to sleep on, nice bathroom to take a bath. This is somehow tricky though. Because I admit, even though I keep saying this budget friendly stuff, I myself is pihikan and maarte when it comes to accommodation. So what I do is still look for a nice transient or room that is clean and is still swak sa budget. I can never compromise with a dirty bathroom. For international bookings, I use Airbnb and Agoda. You can use Airbnb and Agoda too locally but I seldom do that. You can maybe use it for staycations. As for local bookings, I do my research and choose the best I can find.

How to save and travel at the same time
The Grand Palace, Bangkok Thailand

4. Package Tours? Depends. Depends on how much. Because if you're looking for comfort and hassle free travel, then by all means find a good package tour deal. But then again, we're budget travelers! Your best friend is the internet. So research, research, research! How to go to point A from point B. 
You have to know the entrance fee, how much will the tricycle ride costs, is it safe? the opening and closing hours, best time to go, the weather for that day, and how long does it take to go from place to place. 

There are instances that these places are easy to go to, there are times that it would take a lot of your patience. But keep your cool.. it's one of the cons of travelling but it's always worth it. As for me, I sometimes prefer package tour deal if it's sulit and reasonable. But sometimes, it's also good to immerse yourself with the locals and tour the city using public transpo.

How to save and travel at the same time
Pho from the streets of Ho Chi Minh City

5. Food. Southeast Asia has one of the most yummy street foods. I once survived Vietnam and Thailand eating street foods. Because where else can you find the authentic local food? in the streets! Not mentioning the wide choices and ambiance of the street. But beware though and always be alert and check how the food is prepared. It pays to be observant on how the food is served. I don't opt for high end restos whenever I travel. I just wanted to sample their famous dish and taste it for myself. But to eat and indulge in an expensive restaurant is not on my list. As long as the food is clean, the price is reasonable, then I'm in! 

How to save and travel at the same time
Paoay Sand Dunes Ilocos Norte

6. Pasalubong. This is sometimes tricky but I only give pasalubongs to those who are really close and dear to me. I just buy myself a souvenir (tshirt and ref magnet), then for the pasalubong to others, I'll buy local delicacy, tshirts, ref magnets, or for international, sometimes chocolates or whatever is the place famous for.
How to save and travel at the same time
Mt. Manalmon

7. Another way you can see the world in a different perspective is by climbing mountains. Sounds challenging huh? Because, yes it is. My first time was just this year and I am glad I was able to try. The view on the top is amazing and is always worth your pagod. Aside from the view, it's also cheaper compared to other travel related stuff.. if you're lucky enough, there's also an awesome side trip which in my case includes dams, rivers, caves, and monkey bridge. Some even have waterfalls! Can you imagine? Mura na, nakagala ka pa! heehe. ;)

How to save and travel at the same time
St. Paul Ruins Macau

8. Lastly. Entrance tickets. I use the Klook app in booking my tickets in advance. Not that it only saves times, it also saves some money. When you book using Klook, you no longer need to line up in the ticketing office.. You just have to show them your voucher in which in my experience always has a separate line. It helps you save money because Klook offers discounted entrance tix. This come in handy if you're travelling international. From what I've seen though, they offer Ariel's point in Boracay discouted tix.

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Boracay Sunset

Gone are the days where only the rich people can travel. Travelling is much more accessible now. You just have to know how. If you're really into travelling and would do everything for the sake of wanderlust, there are more ways you can travel while earning. There are many more travel blogs out there that teach you on how to earn money while travelling. These are just the basic rules I follow. 

Yes, travelling is not that cheap but with proper planning, you can! With the right budgeting and mindset, you can! One place at a time, you can! Right now, I have yet to cross out a never ending list of places I have to visit before I die, but who cares? It's not like there's a time limit. Take your time. 

Another piece of advice I can give is to travel with those who you are comfortable with. It sucks to travel with people who keeps on complaining. There are really times where your comfort zone will be compromised. But I think, it's where you think and know more of your home town and the place you're exploring. You get to compare the life you have at home and how the locals live in the place you're at. 

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The Venetian, Macau

Of course there are still many other ways you can travel while on a tight budget. If you really have that wanderlust within you, you can travel the world by just being courageous. There are many stories I've read and watched and they managed to travel the world just by coachsurfing and hitchhiking. Some would even work for free accommodation. There are many ways.. And as much as I want to just leave and pack my bags, I still don't have that courage to just go. I'm not saying I won't go but maybe I'm just not yet ready. So until then, I'll just try to manage my work life balance and save travel eat repeat routine. 

Please give me a favor. The next time you hear someone stereotype people who travels often as rich and the likes, please show them this article. Yes, there are people out there who travels on a luxurious way, because they can. But if you're anything like me that has this passion to travel but is always broke, go ahead and still take that risk of travelling to a new place because after all, us budget travelers are the ones who mostly see the place into a different perspective. We treasure every travel moments as if it was the last.

If you have questions, please don't hesitate to contact me or comment below. :)





CONVERSATION

29 comments:

  1. Good read! Yes, I also get those response from friends and relatives who think you need to have lots of money to travel. Well, for me it's just a matter of good financial and time management, attitude and a little bit of courage.

    Another thing I want to add to your list is 'people'. Expanding your network will/may bring you to different places. You will also learn a thing or two with the people you meet, the people you keep. And if you are lucky, these people will take you to different place...for free. ;)

    Keep it up!

    "Life is about courage and going into the unknown."

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    1. I agree with the people as well! But being the introvert that I am, it is really challenging! Haha.

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  2. Thank you for your tips. I'll certainly keep them in mind. It's harder to plan for travel when you're a mom in a family of 6 though. It's more expensive to bring everyone so it takes longer to save. But I believe it can be done. :)

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  3. I do agree that travelling does not need to be luxurious. Being frugal while travelling does not mean that yiu have to compromise your comfort. Great tips on the apps and sites that you used. I would definitely use that on my next destination

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  4. I would love to travel more. Though I guess it really depends on each person's situation. I think when the kids are a little older I'll have the time and the finances to see the world.

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    1. Yup yup. Hehehe good luck! :)

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  5. You are lucky if you can save as much as 40-50% of your salary every month. How do you do it? I manage to save about 8-10%, but I still manage to travel internationally about once every month.

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    1. Youre more lucky to have been travelling internationally once every month! :D

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  6. GIRL, BEST ADVICE EVER. This article spoke to me on so much levels.......... I really want to travel but yes, money has been an issue for so long. I don't even know how people manage to do budget traveling until I read your article so thank you so much!! Will start planning this week and will see where it takes me. :) More power to you!

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    1. Yayyy! Glad I was able to help! If you have any questions regarding with planning, dont hesitate to ask me. :)

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  7. I've friends and family who also view me as rich just because I travel. I used to explain myself to them but not anymore. I work hard for my money and I have the right to use it how ever I please.

    You have a good set of tips here honey. I would advise these to other people as well. I used to think that traveling is expensive but as they say, you will never know until you try. And once I did try, I realized that nothing is impossible to a person who is determined. It is all about priorities. If you want to get something, find the ways to get it. There is always a way.

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    1. This is so on point! I agree with you! <3

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  9. Okay i must say that this article is definitely a great one! Really insightful and I would actually like to implement it to see if I can live the same experience as you, meaning saving and traveling. I mean it is quite challenging to do that today. Thank you Maaya.

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    1. If I can do it, then you can too. It's just a matter of priorities and determination :)

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  10. I completely agree. As a traveler too I have a full time job and a side hustle. My blog gives me free trips. And writing for MB has its perks. But see, there's always work involved :)

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    1. Weee. How I wish I can also score free trips. heheheh

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  11. Great Insights!!! Thanks for sharing these great tips!!! :) Though its not a complete myth that travelling requires money, but yes, you can always plan your travels within your budget!! :) Spending in your hand is always in your hand!! :)

    Regards,
    Saswati | http://www.exploreitmyway.com

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    1. It's all about budgeting. ;)

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  12. Thanks, I'm stuck with the travel funds advice, lol. We don't have that but we do want to travel. So I would suggest that to my husband. Right now, we're only saving. I hope I can allocate a few percent for travel funds, that'll be great!

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    1. Glad I was able to help! Travel funds really helps a lot! :D

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  13. It's such a great blog post. I'm a fresh graduate and I'm really looking forward to travelling soon using by own money. I've been to some countries already but it's my sister who paid for it. Anyway I'll surely consider your tip to save 20 or 30 % of my salary for my travel.

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    1. Go girl! Travel while you're young and able. ;)

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  14. Thanks for the tips - I love to travel too. There's something about travelling that I think makes me grow more as an adult - maybe because when you travel - you get to learn a lot about the place, the history and the culture of the people - One thing lang that I just can't help not to make tipped is my accommodation - maarte talaga ako when it comes to choosing accommodation- so Usually, my budget really spikes up because I splurge on this part - i just like having my holiday living like a queen. hehe!

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  15. I have a friend who's a fan of piso fare and we always rely on her so we can save for airline fare when traveling. From experiences, I book for a cheaper accommodation for transient if I'm alone in my journey but I look for the most comfortable place if I'm with the kids. I also hate to go on a trip with people who always complain. -KarenT

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  16. Thanx a lot I needed this!

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  17. I may not travel all the time like other bloggers but I try to do so at least once a year, and once a year is definitely doable! You're right, it just requires a lot of discipline and "diskarte." It also depends on where you go. If you go around Asia, your money can go a long way!

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