Top money-saving travel tips from our readers

How to have a great holiday and save money too.

Holiday season is almost upon us so we asked our readers to share with us their best money-saving travel tips in a recent competition we ran on Facebook.

We received some great entries – thank you to everyone who entered. We’ve edited these slightly for readability, but here are some of our favourites!

Tips for saving on accommodation 

  • Discounted gift cards - Buy gift cards for hotel chains when they are on sale, then use them when booking to get hotel accommodation for less.
  • Consider 3 stars instead of 5 - When booking a hotel room remember that you’ll only be sleeping there, so you can save some money on your hotel. 
  • Negotiate directly - When booking accommodation, check out prices online then phone them direct, as you will often get offered a better rate.
  • How about a home swap? - A home swap is a wonderful way of staying somewhere for very little cost.

Tips for budgeting

  • Consider paying in advance – Think about paying in advance for theme parks and other attractions as this is often cheaper.
  • Travel light - Only take carry-on luggage, that way you're not tempted to buy lots of items and fill up your huge suitcase!
  • Give the kids some cash – Giving your kids a set amount of spending money will teach them responsibility and avoid the nagging for everything they want and overspending on junk!
  • Keep track of your money – Set a daily budget and keep receipts or a diary of what you're spending every day to help you see if you're sticking to it.

Tips for saving on food

  • Get the essentials delivered - When travelling in Australia, order home delivery from a local supermarket, to be delivered upon arrival, so you can make your own meals and snacks.
  • Bring your own - Take your own snacks and drinks when sightseeing for the day.
  • Eat where the locals eat – Follow the locals and eat at the same spots as they do to avoid paying tourist prices when dining out.
  • Eat a big brekky - Book accommodation with breakfast included, and eat up so you can have a lighter lunch.

Tips for saving on shopping

  • Avoid souvenir shops – Skip the mark-ups at souvenir shops and instead opt for craft markets, shops or galleries frequented by locals.
  • Learn the lingo – Learn how to say "no, that's too much" in the local language to help you bargain and save.  
  • Look for unique items - Don’t buy lots of little, cheap things that you can get anywhere, instead buy fewer items unique to the destination that will always remind you of the trip.  
  • Remember the exchange rate – Use a calculator to work out the exchange rate before buying so you know what you’re spending in your own currency.

More of our readers’ top money-saving travel tips

  • Use public transport – Travelling like a local will save you money and you'll also learn about the city and its people.
  • Bring friends or family - Travel in a group to split costs and to share the fun and create great memories.
  • Head for the beach – A beachside holiday with days of swimming in the sea and lazing on the sand with a good book can be very cost effective!

As we all have different priorities, interests and needs when travelling, not all tips will apply or appeal to everyone, so pick and choose what works for you.

Need more assistance?

If you want help creating a budget to better plan your spending, try our online budget planner calculator.

Also check out the AMP Bett3r Account, which may make managing your money easier, as you can divide your money into pay, save and spend sub-accounts.

And for more money-saving holiday ideas, check out these articles:

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