The main thing that holds us back from travelling as student is money. But, coincidentally, the time when you are a student is the best time for travelling. As students, we have no ties (e.g. mortgages, jobs etc.) and extremely long vacations; so really there’s no excuse. In addition, Europe is so close and affordable!
With five months until the summer: there’s a lot of time to save. Here’s five steps towards creating that travel fund, so you can have the holiday of your dreams this summer. http://gty.im/103034755
1 – PLAN PLAN PLAN
Instead of watching a movie or another episode of a series, use this time to research and plan your next adventure – the key to cheap travel! The biggest expenditures on a trip is accommodation and travel to, from and around. So, by doing a little bit of research you can scout out the cheapest accommodation and flights / train / bus /coach travel. Use sites like skyscanner for flights; which looks across all the flight providers and you can compare different days to fly to spot the cheapest option. For rail fares (if you want to stay in the country), look at splitting the journey into different single journeys, as this can sometimes work out cheaper than buying a return.
2 – SACRIFICE
Get a piggy bank. I know they are for kids; but trust me, the simple action of putting money into it is very rewarding and even more so when you see it start to accumulate! If you sacrifice one or two things each week and put the money into the piggy bank, the money will soon add up! Sacrificing two coffees or two packed lunches a week for 5 months could save nearly £100; which could get you flights somewhere in Europe.
3 – BANKING
Lloyds bank have a great scheme called ‘Save the Change’. Whenever you make a purchase with your debit card, it rounds it up to the nearest pound and puts that money into an e-savings account. Say you spent £2.54, then 46p would be automatically transferred into your e-savings account. It sounds like small amounts; but it will all add up.
Another, option is to transfer to a different bank as many offer cash incentives or vouchers if you open an account with them – perfect for your travel fund. For instance, M&S offers £100 in vouchers if you open up an account with them.
4 – TAX BREAKS
If you have a job and earn under £10,000 a year, you do not have to pay tax on your salary. Check that you aren’t due a tax refund as this could be money that could go straight into your travel fund!
5 – REWARD SCHEMES
They may seem insignificant; but they do offer some good deals. Sign up for things like a Nectar Card, Boots Advantage Card or a myWaitrose Card as even though the rewards are small, they can be big if you are smart. Boots Advantage card offer 4 points for every pound spent; so buy all you toiletries there and see the points stacking up. With a myWaitrose Card you can get a free teas or coffee every time you shop in Waitrose – that’s £2 you can put straight into your travel fund!
My final piece of advice is to set a goal, stick to it and track it!