If you go out to eat frequently or buy new clothes often, people will rarely ask you questions about money. But when it comes to travel, I find that people are not shy to ask questions about how it can be affordable. The truth is, we spend money on things that are important to us. I think people don’t realize that for some of us, travel is more important than fancy brunches or going out for drinks every weekend. You can save money for travel, as long as you challenge yourself to spend less on certain things. What you can save money on is different for every person, but I promise you there is a way for you, too
1. Have Drinks at Home
When Friday and Saturday night roll around, it’s hard to say no when your friends are going out to drinks. However this is an easy way to save money, especially depending on the drink prices in your city. You do have a couple options though. Try inviting your friends over to have a night of drinking at home. You could also drink at home and then meet your friends out, if you are strong willed enough to not purchase anything while you are out. You can always ask for a water with lime so you look like you have a drink (I know this sounds sad, but hey, you’re saving money!) Or maybe just take the night off from drinking, I’m sure your liver will thank you.
2. Recreate your favorite restaurant meals
Cutting back on going out to dinner and ordering takeout is probably one of the best ways to save money for travel. It’s so easy to go out one night and end up spending as much as you would on a weeks worth of groceries. But just because you can’t go out, doesn’t mean you have to stop eating your favorite restaurant meals. As soon as I moved to Germany, I started to search for recipes to recreate the meals that I knew I would miss. Honestly, when you start to do this, you will question why you ever felt the need to go out so often. Here are a couple of my favorite recipes to make at home:
3. Embrace Minimalism
Adopting a minimalist lifestyle isn’t just about saving money, it’s about learning to live with less. And it can be a really freeing experience to recognize that you don’t actually need a ton of material items. I’m currently trying to adopt a more minimalist lifestyle because it appeals to me for so many reasons. As a frequent traveler, my many experiences living out of a bag for a long period of time have taught me that I don’t need as much as I think. And embracing minimalism can also free up your money for experiences rather than things. Check out The Minimalists’ blog or watch their documentary for more information.
4. Create a Curated Closet
This one goes hand in hand with living minimally. I started hearing about the curated closet movement a few years ago and thought it sounded interesting but didn’t think more about it. Recently, after reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo, I started to really think about what I was keeping in my home and closet and if those items were truly bringing me joy.
I ended up getting rid of a ton of clothes and honestly, my closet has never looked better. It is so freeing to reach into my closet and know that I love (almost) every item. I still have a lot of work to do but I think this a great way to save money and curb an excessive shopping habit. My favorite blog on this topic is UnFancy because the author, Caroline, focuses less on strict rules and more on shopping with intention.