9 travel tips for a cheap and relaxing vacation

PHOTOGRAPH: Igor Zakharevich, 123rf.com

Chaos can reign when you’re preparing for a trip. When you arrive in a foreign place, your brain may be frazzled and you might be confused in your new environment. So it’s a good idea to know you’ve got these must-have travel hacks in your back pocket to make your life easier when you’re reserving accommodation, packing that luggage, deciding where to have your next meal or thinking about what kinds of mementos to bring home to friends.

Impress these hacks upon yourself now and you’ll not only avoid a lot of stress, but you’ll also save a pretty penny while you’re on the road.


Must-Have Travel Hacks for Packing Your Bag

There are lots of great tips that allow you to fit more into your bag in the neatest possible way. Yes ladies, you can take many more of your precious things than you thought!


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Tuck small essentials like undergarments and socks inside the sandals and shoes you’re packing. Use shower caps to hold your footwear. (Plastic or shopping bags take up a lot of space.) Now you can pack more clothes by rolling them up. (Folding them into a rectangular shape takes up more space.) However, make sure that you take your iron with you! If, however, you want to take a few wrinkle-free clothes, put tissue paper on top of them. Spreading dryer sheets in your bag will remove any putrid smell inside your luggage and keep your possessions fresh. Wrap up your soap in a washcloth. This will not only save space but after you soap up at any given stop, the washcloth will soak up the moisture and soapiness and protect your luggage and belongings.

Have you ever discovered your favourite dangly earrings broken in pieces inside your bag just when you wanted to glam yourself up? Remember next time to put them in pill containers sorted by the days of the week. The seven compartments can also help you organise your jewellery. You can keep earrings in one compartment, necklaces in another, rings in a third compartment and so on. You can carry small packets of liquid essentials like shampoo, skin cream and the like by loading them inside straws and sticky-taping both ends. This way you can quickly find these items just about anywhere in your bag.


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Doesn’t it irritate you every time you find your chargers or earphones are all tangled up? The best place to keep these is inside a specs case. Thanks to the design of the case, you’ll find your charging cords and earphones remain in perfect condition. If you continuously use your earphone while you travel, make sure you wrap and keep it properly.


Must-Have Travel Hacks for a Roof over Your Head

Living at an expensive hotel can suck up money a lot more quickly than you have time to fully explore your destination. Perhaps you can lengthen your stay without having to worry about the living expense. Have a look around at a possibility that can work for you and save you money, like a work-trade arrangement, temporary abode rent or a home swap.

Many people around the world offer accommodation and food in exchange for a traveller’s services. Helpx.net is a web-based platform that allows you to connect with such hosts. You live with a host as a part of their family and are entitled to use household amenities including Wi-Fi and transportation in return for working on their farm, as a house sitter or a babysitter, etc. You’ll need to discuss everything related to the working terms and living arrangements beforehand. For example, how often will you need to work and what will be the time you devote to the tasks? This can be a great opportunity for you to learn some skills, languages and cultures while exploring a new environment.

You can feel like a resident in a foreign country by renting accommodation at a reasonable price or swapping homes. For renting, sites such as HomeAway.com and Airbnb can be helpful. For home-swapping, it’s useful to consult sites like HomeExchange.com. Such accommodations provide you with cooking facilities so that you can prepare your meals and save even more money.


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You can use cheap local food products and cook exotic meals yourself thanks to recipes offered on the internet. You might ask yourself why you’d want to cook your own food rather than dining on the exotic dishes of a foreign country, but still, you should still consider it an option for at least one meal a day. You can eat out at restaurants the two other times. Eating even one meal you’ve prepared yourself will reduce your costs.


Must-Have Travel Hacks while Exploring Your Destination

Travelling by taxis and buying souvenirs costs a lot!

Start walking everywhere you can. Walking will allow you to witness the beauty of nature. You can better observe the stunning sceneries of beautiful countries like Switzerland when you’re on foot. In spite of all this, it’s recommended that you check out the conditions of the place before setting off. Find out whether it’s a good idea or even suitable to walk along the streets of the region you’re visiting. If you don’t have internet connectivity all the time, make sure you type ‘Okay maps’ on Google Maps to save an area’s map before you head out. This way you can view the region anytime without internet access.

It is quite difficult to resist purchasing souvenirs at your travel destination, but you can’t avoid it either. Dealers of high-priced souvenirs really just attempt to exploit your highly-charged emotions of being in a foreign country far away from home. Therefore, when you buy souvenirs, you should shop at local shops that appropriately represent the place you’re visiting. Local or handmade items will be a lot cheaper. Other great mementos are foreign currency, entry or transportation tickets and invoices.


This article was originally published on The New Savvy.