How do you afford to travel?
This is a question we get asked a lot. But for us we see it the same as someone asking “how do you afford all those clothes?”. It’s literally just what we choose to spend our money on. Some months we’ll get paid and decide that we’ll take £150 out of our budget somewhere along the line, so that we can put the deposit down on a holiday. We love booking with On The Beach and Travel Republic – mostly for the fact that they have some amazing holidays but with a low deposit. After Sardinia in a few weeks time, Andrew has pretty much ran out of annual leave to take off work, so we’re having to fit in a few weekend breaks instead. The amount of times I’ll say to him – just quit your job and we can go traveling instead. It’s never going to happen – but we can dream, right? So I’ve put together a few tips for getting the best deal for your family.
Before you even start looking for a holiday you need to be sure of your budget. Can you afford £200 per person or £500? Will you be looking at a smaller city break or a cheaper but longer beach break. It’s still possible to travel on a low budget, even if it’s somewhere in the UK. ‘Staycations’ can be great and if you head towards the South West region you’ll find some beautiful beaches with crystal clear water. Somewhere like this and you can easily be fooled for being abroad somewhere. We’re huge lovers of Cornwall – we absolutely love it up there. If ‘Staycation’ is your thing then I definitely recommend Cornwall. The beach in the photo below is St. Ives, Cornwall – one of the prettiest beaches I’ve ever been to. I think the main thing to consider is WHAT you want. Do you want a city break? Beach break? Long haul? Short haul? Once you know what you want and you’e worked out your budget – it’s easy.
Book in Advanced
Although I wish I could do the whole last minute jump on a plane kind of thing, realistically if you’re on a budget it’s not that easy. We tend to have all our holidays booked up by about May time. This then allows us enough time to pay them in full before we travel – we look for a good deal and then we put a deposit down. Usually this is about £150 – £200 depending on the overall prices of the holiday. We tend to book holidays that cost anything between £150 per person – £400 per person. £150 being the cheapest we’ve every done for 5 days in Spain. It wasn’t our favourite holiday and we probably wouldn’t go back again. It wasn’t awful it just wasn’t as good as our other holidays. So I do think you need to spend a little more if you’re wanting something with more quality.
Look at places that are cheap to fly to
Instead of diving straight in and looking for complete holiday packages, have a look at just flights and see where is cheapest to fly to. Look at booking with airlines such as Ryanair and Easyjet. You can get incredibly cheap flights to and from around Europe. Within the space of 10 minutes I’ve been browsing Easy jet and have found cheap flights to the following places:
- Malaga £23 July
- Lyon £22 December
- Faro £22 October
- Barcelona £30 September
- Milan £28 September
This just shows how incredibly easy it is to find cheap flights. After you’ve decided where you can afford to go and where you’d like to go, then you can search properly for hotels and apartments to stay in. It all depends what you are looking for – if you’re backpacking then accommodation isn’t a large factor of your stay. If you’re a family then you need to check how family friendly the accommodation is. You may also find that booking hotel and flights separately work out a little cheaper than booking a whole package. It’s important to check before you book – just incase you could save yourselves some money!
Where to look
As I mentioned above, we like to book with On The Beach and Travel Republic. These are my two go-to sites when we’re about to book a holiday – their websites are incredibly easy to use, they accept low deposits and we always find a great deal when using their search engines. A few more places that we can recommend are:
You need to have the right mindset. You need to know that you want to go away – you need to know how many times and you just need to make room in your everyday living budget. Sometimes you’ll find that things can budge a little – for example you may be able to do a budget food shop and save a little extra money for that deposit. My mind set now is that I have to go away. I honestly don’t think I’ll cope with going a whole year without setting food on an aeroplane. But that’s just me – and when the travel bug hits you, you have no choice in the matter! You’re going!