In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best budget-friendly travel hacks for solo travellers.
Travelling solo can be a life-changing experience, but it can also be expensive. Many solo travellers are on a tight budget, and finding ways to save money while still having a memorable trip can be challenging. However, with some careful planning and creativity, it’s possible to have an amazing solo travel experience without breaking the bank.
We have curated a list of budget-friendly travel tips you can use if you prefer to travel solo or otherwise. Let’s have a look:
1. Choose budget-friendly destinations
One of the best ways to save money while travelling solo is to choose budget-friendly destinations. Some destinations are more expensive than others, and by choosing destinations that are more affordable, you can save money on travel and accommodation.
Some examples of budget-friendly destinations for solo travellers include:
Southeast Asia is known for its stunning natural beauty, vibrant culture, and affordable prices. Countries such as Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia offer a wide range of affordable accommodation options, delicious street food, and unique cultural experiences. Plus, with the region’s extensive network of buses, trains, and low-cost airlines, it’s easy to get around without spending a lot of money.
Eastern Europe is another great option for budget-conscious solo travellers. Countries such as Poland, Hungary, and Romania offer a rich cultural heritage, stunning architecture, and affordable prices. Plus, with the region’s extensive network of buses and trains, it’s easy to get around without spending a lot of money.
Central America is a popular destination for backpackers and solo travellers thanks to its stunning beaches, ancient ruins, and vibrant culture. Countries such as Mexico, Guatemala, and Costa Rica offer a wide range of affordable accommodation options, delicious food, and unique cultural experiences. Plus, with the region’s extensive network of buses and low-cost airlines, it’s easy to get around without spending a lot of money.
India is a vast and diverse country that offers a wealth of cultural experiences, stunning landscapes, and delicious cuisine. From the bustling cities of Delhi and Mumbai to the serene backwaters of Kerala, there’s something for every type of traveller in India. Plus, with a wide range of affordable accommodation options and an extensive network of buses and trains, it’s easy to travel around without breaking the bank.
South America is a vast and diverse continent that offers a wealth of cultural experiences, stunning natural landscapes, and unique cuisine. Countries such as Peru, Ecuador, and Bolivia offer a wide range of affordable accommodation options, delicious food, and unique cultural experiences.
Mexico is a budget-friendly destination that offers a rich culture, beautiful beaches and delicious food. You can find affordable accommodation and food throughout the country, and transportation is also quite cheap. Popular destinations include Mexico City, Cancun, Tulum and Oaxaca.
These destinations offer affordable accommodation, food, and activities, making them ideal for those who want to explore new places without spending a fortune.
2. Travel during the off-season
Travelling during the off-season can be a great way to save money while still having an incredible travel experience. The off-season typically refers to the time of year when tourism is at its lowest, which can vary depending on the destination.
Lower prices on accommodation
One of the biggest advantages of travelling during the off-season is that you can often find lower prices on accommodation, flights, and activities. This is because demand is lower during this time, and businesses may offer discounts or promotions to attract more customers. Additionally, you’ll often find that popular tourist attractions are less crowded, which means shorter lines and fewer crowds.
Have authentic travel experiences
Another advantage of travelling during the off-season is that you’ll have a more authentic travel experience. Many popular tourist destinations can become overcrowded during peak season, which can take away from the local culture and atmosphere. Travelling during the off-season allows you to experience a destination more like a local, as you’ll have more opportunities to interact with the local community and participate in cultural events and activities.
Prepare for the weather
One thing to keep in mind when travelling during the off-season is that weather conditions may be less favourable. For example, if you’re travelling to a tropical destination during the off-season, you may experience more rain or cooler temperatures. However, with the right preparation and clothing, you can still have an enjoyable travel experience.
When planning a trip during the off-season, it’s important to do your research and plan accordingly. Some destinations may have limited services or attractions during the off-season, so it’s important to know what to expect before you go. Additionally, it’s a good idea to be flexible with your travel dates, as prices and availability may vary depending on when you’re travelling.
In conclusion, travelling during the off-season can be a great way to save money while still having an incredible travel experience. By taking advantage of lower prices and fewer crowds, you can have a more authentic travel experience while staying within your budget. Well, use this travel tip if travelling solo and looking to save some big bucks. Just be sure to do your research and plan accordingly to make the most of your off-season travel adventure.
3. Use public transportation
Using public transportation while travelling solo can be a great way to save money and experience the local culture. Depending on the destination, public transportation options can include buses, trains, subways, and even ferries.
Not only is public transportation generally cheaper than taking taxis or renting a car, but it’s also a great way to experience the local culture and interact with locals. You’ll often see people from all walks of life on public transportation, and it can be a great way to get a glimpse into daily life in your destination.
Plus, using public transportation is more eco-friendly and can reduce your carbon footprint by decreasing the number of cars on the road. It’s a win-win situation for both your wallet and the environment.
Many public transportation systems are easy to use, with clear signage and maps available. It can often be more convenient than driving, as you don’t have to worry about finding parking or dealing with traffic. And with the security measures in place, it’s generally a safe option for solo travellers who want to avoid walking alone at night.
Of course, it’s important to be prepared and know the system before you go. Research the routes and schedules, and make sure you have the correct change or ticket before boarding. Keep your belongings close to you and be aware of your surroundings to ensure your safety.
So next time you’re planning a solo trip on a budget, consider using public transportation. This travel hack for solo travellers, not only will save money, but you’ll also have the chance to experience the local culture and interact with locals. It’s a great way to make your trip more memorable and meaningful.
4. Stay in hostels
Another great budget-friendly travel hack for solo travellers is to stay in hostels. Hostels offer affordable dormitory-style rooms, as well as private rooms for those who want more privacy. Not only are they cheaper than hotels, but additionally, hostels often offer communal spaces and activities, such as communal kitchens and game rooms, which can provide opportunities to meet other travellers
Hostels are often designed with solo travellers in mind, with shared dorm rooms and communal areas where you can hang out and socialize. You’ll often find travellers from all over the world, making it a great way to meet people and learn about different cultures.
In addition to being more social, hostels are also often located in central areas, making it easy to explore your destination on foot or using public transportation. And with amenities like shared kitchens and laundry facilities, you can save even more money by cooking your own meals and washing your own clothes.
Of course, it’s important to do your research before booking a hostel. Look for reviews and ratings from other travellers to ensure that the hostel is safe and clean. And don’t be afraid to ask questions or make special requests to ensure that you have a comfortable stay.
While staying in a hostel may not be as luxurious as staying in a hotel, it’s a great way to save money and make new friends while travelling solo. Plus, the memories and experiences you’ll gain from staying in a hostel will be priceless. So next time you’re planning a solo trip on a budget, consider staying in a hostel and experiencing the true essence of solo travel using this travel hack.
5. Cook your own meals
Eating out can be expensive, especially when travelling solo. One of the best ways to save money on food while travelling is to cook your own meals. Cooking your own meals while travelling solo may seem like a hassle, but it can actually be a fun and budget-friendly way to experience local cuisine and save money.
One way to do this is to shop at local markets or grocery stores for fresh ingredients and cook your own meals in a shared kitchen at a hostel or guesthouse. This not only saves money on expensive restaurant meals but also allows you to experiment with local ingredients and create your own unique dishes. Many hostels offer communal kitchens, which allow you to prepare your own meals so you can look out for that.
Another option is to book accommodations that come with a kitchenette or even a full kitchen, allowing you to cook your meals in the comfort of your own space. This can be especially convenient if you have dietary restrictions or preferences and need to cook your meals yourself.
Of course, cooking your own meals does require some planning and preparation. Before you travel, research local markets and grocery stores in your destination, and make a list of basic ingredients and cooking supplies that you’ll need. Don’t forget to pack any necessary cooking utensils, like a portable stove or cookware.
Cooking your own meals while travelling solo may seem daunting at first, but it can be a great way to save money and experience local culture in a unique way. So next time you’re travelling on a budget, consider taking a trip to the local market and whipping up a meal that you’ll never forget.
6. Take advantage of free activities
When you’re travelling solo on a budget, taking advantage of free activities can be a great way to explore your destination without breaking the bank.
One of the best things about travelling is discovering new places and experiences, and you don’t always need to spend a lot of money to do that. Many destinations offer free walking tours, museums, and cultural events that can provide an immersive experience and give you a deeper understanding of the local culture.
For example, many cities have free walking tours led by locals, who will take you through the streets and share their knowledge and stories about the history and culture of the place. These tours are a great way to explore the city and learn about its hidden gems and lesser-known attractions.
Another way to enjoy free activities is to take advantage of natural landmarks and parks. Hiking, walking, or cycling in a nearby park or nature reserve can be a great way to experience the local landscape and scenery. If you’re travelling to a beach destination, spending a day soaking up the sun and swimming in the ocean can be an enjoyable and free way to spend your time.
Furthermore, checking out local events such as markets, festivals, and concerts can be a great way to immerse yourself in the local culture and meet new people without spending a lot of money.
When you’re travelling solo, taking advantage of free activities can be a great way to not only save money but also make the most of your trip. So do your research, explore the local area, and discover all the amazing free activities that your destination has to offer. Well, use this travel tip if travelling solo and say thanks to us later.
7. Travel with a water bottle and reusable bag
Travelling with a reusable water bottle and bag may seem like a small thing, but it can have a big impact on your budget and the environment.
When you’re travelling, it’s easy to spend a lot of money on bottled water and snacks, especially in touristy areas where prices can be inflated. However, by bringing a refillable water bottle and reusable bag, you can save money and reduce your environmental impact.
For example, many airports and tourist destinations now have water bottle refill stations, so you can fill up your bottle for free and avoid buying expensive bottled water. Additionally, some cafes and restaurants offer discounts or free refills for customers who bring their own bottles.
Bringing a reusable bag is also a smart idea when you’re travelling. Not only can you use it to carry groceries or souvenirs, but it can also come in handy when you’re out exploring. For example, if you’re visiting a beach, you can use your bag to collect any litter you come across and help keep the environment clean.
Furthermore, using a reusable bag can help reduce the amount of plastic waste generated by your trip. Many countries and cities are taking steps to reduce plastic waste, and by bringing your own bag, you can do your part in promoting sustainability and reducing waste.
Travelling with a reusable water bottle and bag is a simple yet effective way to save money and reduce your environmental impact. So next time you’re packing for your solo trip, don’t forget to pack your reusable essentials and make a positive impact on your budget and the planet.
8. Use travel apps and websites
In this digital age, there are countless travel apps and websites that can help you save money and make the most of your solo travels. Whether you’re looking for cheap flights, affordable accommodations, or fun activities, there’s an app or website for everything.
One of the best ways to save money on flights is to use flight aggregator websites like Skyscanner or Kayak. These sites search hundreds of airlines to find the best deals and allow you to set alerts for price drops or flash sales. This way, you can book your flight when prices are at their lowest and save a significant amount of money.
When it comes to accommodation, there are many apps and websites that offer budget-friendly options like hostels, homestays, and vacation rentals. Hostelworld and Booking.com are great for finding affordable hostels and budget-friendly hotels, while Airbnb and HomeAway offer unique and affordable vacation rental options.
In addition to flights and accommodation, there are also travel apps and websites that can help you find free or low-cost activities and experiences. TripAdvisor and Lonely Planet are great resources for finding things to do in your destination, while Couchsurfing and Meetup are great for connecting with locals and other travellers and finding free or low-cost activities.
Using travel apps and websites can also help you stay organized and informed during your trip. Apps like Google Maps, XE Currency, and Duolingo can help you navigate your destination, convert currency, and learn basic phrases in the local language.
Overall, using travel apps and websites is a great way to save money and make the most of your solo travels. So before you embark on your next adventure, be sure to do your research and download some of these useful tools to help you along the way.
9. Find free or cheap transportation
Transportation can be one of the biggest expenses while travelling solo. However, there are many ways to save money on transportation expenses. Finding affordable transportation while travelling solo can be a game-changer for your budget. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get around without breaking the bank.
One of the most cost-effective transportation options is public transportation. Many cities around the world have extensive public transportation systems that are affordable and easy to use. From subways and buses to trams and trains, public transportation can be a great way to get around a city and save money on taxis and ride-sharing services.
Another option is to rent a bike or scooter, which can be an affordable and fun way to explore your destination. Many cities have bike-sharing programs, and there are also apps like Lime and Bird that allow you to rent electric scooters by the minute.
Take a bus or train instead of flying
If you’re looking to travel long distances between cities, consider taking a bus or train instead of flying. While it may take longer, it can be significantly cheaper and can also give you a chance to see more of the country you’re travelling through.
In some destinations, hitchhiking is also a viable option for solo travellers. This can be a great way to meet locals and fellow travellers and can also be a fun and unique experience. However, it’s important to do your research and make sure hitchhiking is safe and legal in your destination before you try it.
Finally, walking is always a great option, especially in compact cities or areas with lots of pedestrian paths. Not only is it free, but it also allows you to soak up the local atmosphere and discover hidden gems that you might have missed if you were travelling by car or public transportation.
Overall, finding free or cheap transportation is all about being resourceful and flexible. By taking advantage of public transportation, renting bikes or scooters, or walking, you can save money and have a more authentic and memorable solo travel experience. This is a perfect travel hack for solo travellers.
10. Use travel rewards programs
Using travel rewards programs is a great way to save money on your solo travel adventures. Many airlines, hotels, and credit card companies offer rewards programs that allow you to earn points or miles for your purchases, which can then be redeemed for free flights, hotel stays, or other travel-related expenses.
Sign-up for the travel program
When you sign up for a travel rewards program, you’ll typically receive a sign-up bonus of points or miles, which can help you get started on earning rewards right away. You can also earn points or miles by using your credit card for everyday purchases, such as groceries, gas, and dining out.
Read the terms and conditions
One thing to keep in mind is that not all reward programs are created equal. Some have blackout dates or limited availability, while others may require a certain number of points or miles to be redeemed for a reward. It’s important to read the terms and conditions carefully before signing up for a rewards program so that you know what you’re getting into.
Travel credit cards
To maximize your rewards, consider using a travel rewards credit card that offers bonus points or miles for specific travel-related purchases, such as flights, hotels, or rental cars. You can also look for promotions or special offers that allow you to earn extra rewards, such as double points or miles for certain purchases.
Combine travel points
Another way to make the most of your travel rewards program is to combine points or miles from different sources. For example, you might earn points through your credit card, hotel stays, and airline travel, and then combine those points to redeem for a free flight or hotel stay.
Overall, using a travel rewards program can be a great way to save money on your solo travel adventures. Just be sure to do your research and choose a program that works best for your travel style and preferences. With a little effort, you can earn plenty of rewards and enjoy your travels without breaking the bank.
11. Be flexible
Being flexible is the key to saving money while travelling solo. When you have a set plan, you may miss out on unexpected opportunities that could be cheaper and more fun. By being open to new possibilities, you can take advantage of last-minute deals or spontaneous adventures that fit your budget.
For example, instead of booking a flight and accommodations in advance, you could try to find last-minute deals on websites like Expedia or Kayak. You can also check out discount airlines like Spirit or Frontier for affordable airfare.
In addition, being flexible also means being willing to adjust your itinerary based on unexpected situations or circumstances. For example, if a particular activity or attraction is too expensive, you can look for alternatives or skip it altogether. Or if you find a great deal on a flight or hotel to a different destination, you can change your plans and take advantage of the savings.
Being flexible may require you to step out of your comfort zone and embrace new experiences, but it can also lead to unforgettable adventures and significant savings on your solo travels.
12. Travel light
Travelling light is one of the most effective budget-friendly travel hacks for solo travellers. When you’re travelling solo, you don’t have to worry about carrying extra luggage for anyone else, which means you can pack only the essentials.
One of the biggest advantages of travelling light is that you can save money on baggage fees if you’re flying. Many airlines charge exorbitant fees for checked bags, and these fees can quickly add up if you’re travelling frequently. By packing light and only bringing a carry-on bag, you can avoid these fees and keep more money in your pocket.
Be mobile and flexible
Travelling light also allows you to be more mobile and flexible during your trip. You won’t have to worry about lugging around heavy bags or waiting for your luggage at the baggage claim. Instead, you can easily move from one destination to another and take advantage of any last-minute opportunities or deals that may arise.
When it comes to packing light, the key is to bring only the essentials. Start by making a list of everything you absolutely need for your trip, and then pare it down as much as possible. Stick to basic, versatile pieces of clothing that you can mix and match, and consider investing in a few high-quality, multi-purpose items that can serve multiple functions.
Another important tip is to pack smartly. Roll your clothes instead of folding them, which saves space and minimizes wrinkles. Use packing cubes or compression bags to maximize space in your luggage, and consider leaving behind anything that you can easily purchase or borrow once you arrive at your destination.
Travelling light may take some practice and planning, but it’s a great way to save money, be more mobile, and have a stress-free travel experience. By following these tips and being mindful of what you pack, you can enjoy a budget-friendly solo trip without sacrificing comfort or convenience.
13. Plan ahead
Planning ahead can be an essential part of budget-friendly solo travel. It can save you a lot of money and help you avoid unexpected expenses. To make the most out of your trip, it’s important to research your destination beforehand and create a detailed itinerary. This will not only help you save money but also help you avoid missing out on any must-see attractions.
Create a budget first
Start by creating a budget for your trip and sticking to it as much as possible. This will help you plan out your expenses and make informed decisions about what activities and experiences are worth the cost. You can also use budgeting apps or spreadsheets to track your expenses during the trip.
Book in advance
When it comes to accommodation, booking in advance can often save you a lot of money. Look for deals and promotions on travel websites and apps, or consider staying in a budget-friendly hostel or Airbnb. If you’re willing to be flexible with your travel dates, you may be able to find even better deals.
Plan your itinerary
When planning your itinerary, look for free or low-cost activities, such as hiking, visiting public parks and museums, or attending local festivals or events. These can often be just as enjoyable as more expensive activities, and can even provide a more authentic cultural experience.
Plan your transportation as well
It’s also important to plan your transportation in advance. Look for discount passes or tickets for public transportation, and consider using rideshare services like Uber or Lyft instead of expensive taxis. Walking or biking can also be a great way to explore a new destination while saving money.
Have a backup plan
In addition to planning ahead, it’s always a good idea to have a backup plan in case things don’t go as expected. Consider having an emergency fund or travel insurance to cover unexpected expenses, and keep important documents and contact information on hand in case of an emergency.
Overall, planning ahead can help you save money and make the most out of your budget-friendly solo travel experience. Don’t be afraid to get creative and find unique ways to save money while still having a memorable trip.
In conclusion, travelling solo can be an amazing experience, but it can also be expensive. However, by following these budget-friendly travel hacks, you can save money while still having an incredible travel experience. From choosing budget-friendly destinations to using public transportation and finding free activities, there are many ways to explore new places without breaking the bank.
So, go ahead and plan your next solo travel adventure with these tips in mind, and have a memorable trip without worrying about your budget.
If you are travelling to Billings, Montana (United States) and looking for things to do, check out our Billings, Montana blog.