Tips for Visiting Expensive Destinations on the Cheap- Ngtraveller
Here are several tips for visiting expensive destinations on the cheap, and while you won't have the fanciest trip, this means you can still travel.
Take night buses or trains
When visiting Europe, the cheapest way to get around and save money is to sleep on the night buses or trains. In this way, you will provide an overnight stay. You may be able to do what I (sometimes) do: I take a night bus, arrive, see the destination for the day, and then take another night bus that night.
Whenever I travel in Europe I use Flixbus, but in Asia and other countries you should be able to find local buses and night trains. This may mean that you have to book through a travel agency, but they generally offer good, reliable rates.
Stay in hostels & Stay in an Airbnb
Hostels usually have the cheapest beds. This is because they shared dorm-type rooms, where you would be in a room with other people. Dorms can often range from 4 beds to more than 20 beds. Hostels are also often in great locations and in the heart of the destination. This means that you will save money as you will not have to take a taxi or public transport everywhere.
In expensive destinations, dormitories may still be very cheap, but it will still be much cheaper than staying in a hotel or having a private room.
Another accommodation option is staying in an Airbnb. These are properties that rent free rooms or sometimes a whole house or apartment is rented. The good thing about Airbnb is that they are good for longer stays and you can settle in almost like you live there. You will often find cooking facilities, a washing machine, and just about anything you need.
If you don't want to spend anything on accommodation, consider Couch Surfing. This is where the generous hosts will provide you with a free sleeping place. They can also be kind enough to show you the destination. Of course, if you are considering this option, stay safe and have backup plans in case the accommodations are not what you expected.
Buy food from grocery stores
If you don't bring food, another option is to buy food and avoid restaurants. Many stores have sandwiches and other takeout items and this is a great way to save money.
I often do this in London because I avoid restaurants that are likely to cost at least £ 10 per meal. Instead I go to a grocery store like Tesco where they often have food deals for around £ 3. If I wanted to have breakfast, lunch and dinner for around £ 10 eating this way.
If you're staying at an Airbnb like the one above, or even a hostel, you can keep it really cheap and buy things like pasta and sauce.
Eat at food courts
If you still want to eat out, but also want to save money by avoiding restaurants, head to the food court. They are often found in malls / generally offer a lot of hot options, which are then eaten canteen style.
My last suggestion for low-cost dining is to buy fast food, like McDonald's, street food vendors, etc. This may be the least healthy way to eat, but it is still quite cheap compared to a restaurant.
Visit free attractions
Attractions can be expensive to travel. But the good thing is that most destinations have free activities. Like free walking tours, sometimes free museums (like in London) and other benefits. You can find lots of free and fun things to do by searching Google (or a different search engine) in the "Free things to do in [destination]" .
Buy a City Card
If free attractions aren't for you and you still want to see a lot at your destination, consider getting a city card. You have to pay for these, but decent city cards can provide free or discounted entry to most attractions, as well as free rides on public transportation. For example, the card in Copenhagen works this way, just like the London Pass.
It's worth noting that these cards are only worth the money if you do a lot during your visit, so collect the amount you'll spend without them before you buy.
Work at the destination
Another way to make visiting an expensive destination cheap is to work there. This could be through volunteering, such as Workaway, or finding seasonal work as a bar / restaurant, etc.
Drink tap water and take a bottle
When you travel and especially if you walk and go out a lot, you should always carry water. An inexpensive way to do this is to carry water in a bottle. In some destinations like Zurich and Vienna, you will find free water outlets or fill up your accommodation if you stay overnight. Of course, always make sure your tap water is safe to drink before doing so.
Walk everywhere or hire a bike
In many cities, especially in Europe, it is possible to walk almost everywhere when sightseeing. Like London, which is a huge city, you can walk among many of the best things to see. This may not be the best way to get around if you're short on time, and constant walking can be tiring, but it will definitely save you some money on public transportation.