Now we’re on our big SE Asia trip we’ve put together 20 tips on how to save money so you can travel the world too. Let us know in the comments if you have any other saving top tips!
Create a goal
What are you saving for? 1 week? 1 month? 1 year? Decide what it is and then come up with a REALISTIC amount you’ll need to make it happen. You need to think about how long you have to save. If you’re unrealistic with your figure you’ll give up half way.
Once you have a figure and a time frame, you need to be consistent, positive and willing to work harder than you ever have. If your commitment to saving lessens you won’t see the results you want.
Matt was in the same job for 10 years before we came away and on the side he did extra work. I had been a Nanny with one family for a year. I ended up swapping jobs just so we could take more money home- we’re not suggesting this is what you do but just think about how you could increase your income… Can you work extra hours? Cover someones sick day? Take a second job?
For us this was surveys, we know there are a lot out there but personally we used YouGov UK. You do a certain amount of surveys each one is worth points. Once you reach a certain amount of points you receive £50. Other sites we haven’t personally used but know are legit (from others using them) are: Prolific Academic, Street Bees.
Sell your stuff
You’re going away, look around your house/bedroom do you NEED half of the stuff in it? No? Sell it! Carboots, Ebay, Depop, Gumtree. This was up there with one of our most profitable extra earnings.
Before you just scroll down, this is NOT betting. It is a technique where you extract profit from free bet promotions offered by bookmakers. This sounds a little confusing to begin with but trust us when we say its easy once you’ve started. Before coming away we were easily making £600-£1000 per month from doing it. Matt has just recently set up an Instagram to show others how to get involved.
Take advantage of celebrations
If you celebrate birthdays/Christmas/graduation or any other event that you would normally receive gifts, ask for money instead. (Even better ask for it in the currency of the place you’re going so you can’t spend it!) If your family/friends aren’t keen on handing over cash ask for things you NEED, a backpack, packing cubes whatever you could use whilst travelling.
Reduce your outgoings
Look through your bank account, look at your outgoings each month so you can see where your money is going. Got a gym membership you don’t use? Spotify account you hardly listen to? Subscription you forgot you even had? Get rid of them all and put the direct debit costs of those subscriptions straight into your savings.
Skim your bank account
If you’ve not heard of this before it’s basically where you log on to your online banking every day/week/month and round it up example if you have £102.56 in your account you would take the £2.56 and put it into your savings. It’s such a small amount that you wont miss it.
Take part in free activities
Before your big trip you still need to enjoy yourself, we used the time to look up free things to do in our area. We went out on woodland walks, had picnics in the garden, visited free museums, went on bike rides, had movie nights at home. Find the things that make you happy without spending a penny.
Stay in at night
It does’t mean you can never enjoy an evening out just choose the ones that are important to you. Fancy dinners, expensive cocktails, a few pints down the pub they all add up. If you’re the type of person that goes out every weekend even if you just cut it out once a month you’ll be saving more. We aren’t necessarily big drinkers but would spend a lot on meals out at the weekends, we cut it down to once a month so we could still enjoy ourselves whilst saving money.
Do the no spend challege
We did a no spend challenge in January. As the title suggests you challenge yourself not to spend anything every day for one month, every time you do spend write it down. The best way to do this is to hold yourself accountable, make it a fun challenge with your friend or partner. Matt and I did it against each other to see who could spend the least but I also posted it on our Instagram stories so it made me more determined not to spend. It’s a challenge that really makes you stop and think whether you need something or not before you buy it.
Set up automatic bank transfers
Set up an automatic transfer from your bank account to your savings on pay day, before you even get a chance to see the money. This makes it easier for you to see what you have left until your next pay day and makes you less likely to ‘forget’ or ‘not bother’ transferring the money over.
Change your lunch habits
A simple one that applies to all meals. Just stop being convenient. Make a sandwich, don’t buy a meal deal. Take a coffee in a reusable mug from home, don’t go to Starbucks! A meal deal 5 days a week comes to approx £15 taking a sandwich and a pack of crisps from home is going to cost you approx £4 for the week. that’s £11 that can go straight into your savings.
Download money saving apps
Whilst Saving we used two apps called Plum and Cleo. They both do the exact save thing and move money from your Bank account into a separate savings all whilst sending you motivational messages and savings updates to your phone. You’re able to withdraw the money from the savings whenever you like, they don’t hold them for any period of time.
Slash your shopping
This is a simple one, start differentiating your needs and your wants. Do you need that new dress? Do you need that new phone? Do you need that _______ or do you want it?
Shop around for the best prices
This is for the things you need! So you’ve decided you need a backpack so you have something to hold all your stuff for travelling. Decide on the one you want and search! When we chose our backpacks we looked in every shop for the best deal. Matt didn’t even have to pay out for his after his parents offered to buy it for his Christmas present!
Remove temptations on social media
A big problem I personally encountered when saving was I enjoyed watching a lot of fashion influencers on Instagram and Youtube. This is fine but sometimes the videos and photos make you tempted to purchase items, not something you want to feel when you are starting to save. I didn’t want to completely remove them from my feed as I still enjoyed watching but I decided to make the conscious effort to watch them less and start watching more travel videos. This is also when I created our Instagram so I could follow other travel related influencers to help inspire me to save so we can also travel!
Think about credit cards
This isn’t necessarily a ‘saving’ tip but it did save us £185! When we first decided to go on our trip we decided on getting an American Express credit card. With our card every time we spend we get points, once you reach a certain amount of points you can buy flights and accommodation with them. We decided to splash out and spent 35,000 of our points on an extremely lavish hotel stay whilst we were in Langkawi, Malaysia. A night we wouldn’t of otherwise had. All we did to reach those points was use our cards to buy our flights and accommodation for our trip and then we paid it off straight away so we didn’t get ourselves into debt! Plus if you use our link you’ll get 33,000 after you spend your first £1000.
Make it exciting!
Our biggest tip of all is to enjoy the journey and then enjoy the outcome. If you spend the next however long miserable about saving, it will make it even harder. Try to make it fun, set challenges with friends and family. There are loads of print out saving trackers online you can use too, after all watching that number increase is the best feeling in the world.
Some of the links in the above post contain referral links, they cost you nothing extra to use but it does mean we gain a small profit from you using it. You are in no way obligated to use the links but we would appreciate it a lot if you did as it will help us to continue on our travels. We will only ever recommend products and services we use and love.