Money Saving 2


There are no ifs and buts about it: at some point while you’re on the road you’re going to realise you’re running through your funds quicker than you’d hoped. But there are ways to stretch your cash further and break your bad spending habits. Here are five more tried and tested ways to make your cash go further while you are on the road.

6: Write it Down:

For one week on the road, try to keep a list of what you spend each day, from that random bottle of water to what you shouted your new friends on booze. Keeping a diary of expenses lets you look at where your cash is going, where your weaknesses are, and where you can cut back.

Only for the brave: if you really want to spook yourself, you can work  an average of how much you are spending each day, and divide that what’s left of your travel funds by that number.

7. Use your Skills

Some of the most intrepid people I’ve met travelling used their skills on the road. I once saw a hairdresser make a few hundred pounds cutting hair after putting up a sign at my hostel in Jeffrey’s Bay. She was so popular, she ended up taking appointments. But there are other ways I’ve seen people do it- selling jewellery, drawing portraits, even one guy helping people do their tax online!

A word of warning: Try to avoid anything that might be illegal, and keep in mind there may not be a market for your kind of special skill.

8. Get Dirty, Get Clean

One of the biggest unexpected money drainers for travellers on an extended RTW is laundry.  Don’t be surprised if you get a whopping £10 bill for each backpack load of smelly clothes. Over a year, that’s the equivalent of a month’s accommodation- and a lot of left over beer money- while you’re on the road. Instead, wash your own. Before you go, head to Tesco’s and grab a bar of laundry soap, pick up a travel washing line from a specialist travel shop, and scrub your shirts in the sink.

However: some stains and smells still need a proper machine wash. Be prepared every few months to do a load to give your clothes that fresh feeling.

9. Grab yourself an egg and beat it

Forget eating out- eat standing up. No matter where you are in the world, you’ll find an ample supply of tasty and cheap street food from samosas in India to hot dogs in New York. I’ve stood on the Ko San Road and watched a restaurant sneakily buy pad Thai off a street vendor, before sticking it on a plate and feeding it to tourists for five times the price, so keep in mind it’s almost always cheaper to eat standing up. The other way to slash what you spend on food is to stay in a hostel with a kitchen and cook your own. Most hostels have a shared food shelf where people leave leftover ingredients, which can also halve your grocery bill. And if your hostel offers you a free breakfast: make sure you’re out of bed in time to eat it.

The Caveat: Know thy own stomach capabilities and be picky about where you eat and who you buy your food from. Watch the food being cooked, eat where the locals are eating and if you know something is going to make you sick, don’t eat it.

10. Ground Force

Your RTW ticket is expertly planned and all paid for, but another unexpected money drainer is how much money you’re going to blow getting around on the ground from It-town A to Must-See B. You might want to see everything, but those three and four hour bus rides between towns drain time and funds. The simple solution is to spend longer in few places. You’ll get to know a place better, meet more people, and save money and time.

Take heart:  you won’t be missing out; you’ll just have a more in-depth experience.