Everybody gets a hit with a bout of wanderlust from time to time. But when you find the constant itch to travel starting to take over while your schedule and finances get in the way of your adventures, it might be high time to start reassessing your approach to jetsetting. To help you get globetrotting more often, with more ease, try these handy travel tips (and get ready to start ticking locations off your travel bucket list).
Figure out a side hustle.
If you’re not really ready to start setting aside a chunk of each paycheck for travel (which is always a smart option), you might want to consider taking on a side hustle. Basically, that just means finding a second job, or a new way of making some extra money, that you can then use to generate funds exclusively for traveling. Maybe that could mean finding some extra freelance work, or spending some weekends working as a part-time barista. Whatever your approach, the key is to find something that won’t be too overwhelming on top of your regular day-to-day, but that can bring in some extra cash to go straight to travel.
Cut back on small expenses.
How much do you really need that afternoon cup of coffee during the workday? Okay, a lot. But does your office have a coffee maker that you could use instead of making a coffee run? Finding ways to cut back on small, recurring expenses that might seem pretty insignificant in the short term but add up over time – think $2.50 for a cup of coffee, or $10 for an Uber trip – is an easy way to save a pretty big sum in the long term. And when you start saving that money, you’ll ultimately have more cash that you can dedicate to travel.
Start a travel jar.
If just knowing that you’re spending less and will thus have more to spend on travel isn’t quite enough for you, try going for something a little more concrete – like a travel jar. This is like a swear jar (you remember those, right?) but instead of putting a dollar in every time you use less-than-decent language, you can put one (or several) in every day to help build up your travel fund. Chances are you won’t really miss the loose bills, but you’ll be surprised to see just how much the money can add up when left untouched for long enough.
Sign up for travel deal sites.
There are a lot – like seriously plenty – of websites and newsletters that you can sign up for that will hook you up with pretty amazing travel deals on the regular. Sign up for sites like Momondo, which has been ranked one of the best flight comparison tools online, or Scott’s Cheap Flights, a site that scans the web for cheap international flights and sends you alerts when some pop up.
Be flexible with your dates.
In general – but especially if you’re using a site like Scott’s Cheap Flights – it always helps to be a little flexible with the days that you’re willing to travel. A lot of times, special deals on airfare or accommodations are only available during certain date ranges, many of which may not (and typically don’t) fall on popular travel dates that you may be considering for your own trip. So instead of deciding on your travel plans based on the dates that you’d like to jet off, consider going about it by researching flights first, and letting the results pick your dates for you.
And with your location.
Just like having a predetermined date range for your trip could be keeping you from finding the best travel deals around, having a nonnegotiable travel destination in mind could get in the way of finding the best deals, too. While it’s fine to have an idea of where you’d like to go, always go into the planning process with an open mind. Maybe make a list of some of the top places that you’d be interested in traveling to and see which place from your list has the best deals. Or, better yet, be a little spontaneous with the planning and follow the deals to whatever destination happens to be a steal in the moment.