7 Ridiculously Easy Ways to Cut Travel Expenses by 50%

How to Cut Travel Expenses

Paying for unnecessary stuff is not cool. Additional service fees and charges add up to your travel expenses. Here are 7 easy ways to cut travel expenses by up to 50%.

Table of Contents

1. Be alert on seat sales (Save 30-50%)

AirAsia seat sale

Simple. You’ll be one of the first few people who get notified of any promotions, seat sales, and discounts.

Social media is not even enough. You have to subscribe via email so that you will receive all updates straight to your inbox. And yes, check your emails frequently and book in advance.

Here’s the membership page for Philippine Airlines’ Mabuhay Miles, CebuPacific’s Go Rewards, and AirAsia. On top of the newsletters, you can also earn points/miles for every flight that you can redeem later on.

But take note, on some occasions discounted round-trip tickets don’t even save you since they are just playing the numbers.

Here’s the scenario: a destination trip is 70% off but the return trip is 170% more expensive which makes it a break even. Crazy but true. You are not saving a dime.

In this case, you can search for other return flights from other airlines to avoid the sale scam. I have done this many times already and it saved me a reasonable amount of money.

I don’t normally buy tickets at regular prices. Why would I when I can have it 30-50% off?

2. Be flexible on your travel dates (save 30-50%)

Be flexible on travel dates

Most of the time you are not really particular about your travel dates unless it is intended for the honeymoon, birthday, or spur-of-the-moment trips. I do not personally recommend the latter, by the way.

Major airlines are targeting promotions during off-peak season to major destinations. Hence you are leaving money on the table if you really wish to go to Boracay on Labor Day to catch the #LaBoracay party.

April and May are when ticket prices skyrocket caused of the excessive desire of wanderlusts to go out during summer.

3. Skip all the travel package deals (save 20%)

Two women jumping at the beach on sunset

Travel agencies sprout like mushrooms in social media nowadays. Countless travel deals are thrown away every single day and man, they are enticing.

If you want to save on your travel expenses, by all means, avoid them.

Travel packages are unreasonably expensive and less customized. You pay more for less and the service is on par with normal.

Since they also exist for business, they are charging stellar prices for the added service of organizing air and land transfer, food, and accommodation. Why pay when you can do it anyway?

But don’t get me wrong. Travel packages are still great if you want a hassle-free journey.

4. Call the hostel directly (save 20%)

Call hostels directly

Another item often overlooked is accommodation. In the past year, I was solely using travel apps like Airbnb and Expedia for booking hostels. It saved me a lot rather than staying at expensive hotels.

But lately, I just found out I could even save more by calling the hostel directly via landline or a cellular number and it saved me even more.

Here’s how:

  1. Search for cheap accommodations through the Expedia app.
  2. Once you find the name of the hostel, Google it and get the contact number.
  3. Most of the hostels have cellular numbers so call them directly and boom, you’re booked instantly!

I tried this already when I went to Davao. I found out that Expedia is charging 20% more on the room rates! That is how much I saved times the number of days I stayed. Big savings.

5. Ditch the taxi (save 80%)

A small bike

Transportation is one of the challenges while traveling. Sometimes when you are lost there is no other way but to ride a cab and tell the driver to go to the nearest SM. I know, I tried this already. An emergency is an exception.

In normal conditions, avoid riding a taxi for not only it is expensive but most drivers exploit the opportunity of overcharging you – either through scammy taxi meters or stellar flat rates.

Related: Amazing Camping Experience in Borawan

Ride public transportation (used by locals) instead – jeepney, tricycle, or pedicab. Don’t act like a tourist but a local.

And for any questions you have in mind, ask a local. 90% of the time they will help you.

It also pays to be bargaining all the time. A few bucks saved when accumulated is worth a hundred.

6. Eat where the locals go (save 40-60%)

Eat where the locals go

You can stretch your travel budget by simply choosing where to eat. If you want to go to a famous resto you’ve been dying to go to, do it just once for the sake of experience but not on your entire 3-day 2-night stay.

Take note that travel isn’t food alone and not all delicious foods are expensive.

When I went to El Nido it was really one of my itineraries to go to Altrove Restaurant – an Italian restaurant famous for its brick oven pizza.

It was a bit expensive but it was really worth it. Just one dinner (for experience’s sake) and I never went there again.

7. Be safe (priceless)

A woman with a designer bag

Accidents are more expensive than being safe. Should have put this on top of the list but I didn’t because you would think this is very obvious.

It is but not really when you’re high and stoked. Think again.

Although accidents are inevitable, we can decrease (or even eliminate) the likelihood of accidents to happen. One of the best ways to do this is to be mindful of your surroundings.

You can’t expect to be safe if you go alone at 1 AM in the morning on the outskirts with lots of drunk locals. Not a good idea.

Likewise, it doesn’t make sense if you wear jewelry and show it off publicly. You might not be wearing it again.

Mindfulness is being aware in the present with yourself and with other people. Of course, this shouldn’t interfere with your activities. You should know yourself if it is not safe (then you need to avoid it) so it won’t cause you any harm.

Bonus: Do you have Life Insurance? (priceless)

A foot about to step a banana peeling

This is not to exaggerate. We will never know when a serious incident will hit us – maybe not at this time (who wants to?) but eventually, it will.

Life insurance should be one of your priorities. Yes, on top of your future business and travel plans. Here’s why.

Life insurance will save you and your children from any unlikely incidents that will affect your family financially.

Think about being laid off from work, health conditions, or accidents (from travel or by other means) that may affect your income. Life insurance can help you with that.

If you want to know more, send me an email and I can give you a free quote.


Travel is part of life. We go into places and immerse in experiences to rejuvenate us from the daily grind. Travel, however, is expensive and requires ample budget and preparation.

If we all just go travel right away without proper planning (and saving), we might be spending on unnecessary things that will blow up the travel budget and affect our nest egg.

Proper planning and saving are a “must” for a worry-free trip. Do you have any other tips not mentioned in this post? Please leave a comment below.

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