Money Tips: How to Still Save while Travelling

I have to admit – travelling and saving don’t belong in the same arena. You’re out on a vacation. Why worry about money when you can just figure it out as soon as you get home, right?

Well, that’s not how it’s supposed to be.

When I was still younger, I never really paid attention on the expenses or even how much the hotel room costs per night. I’m with my parents so all I care about is how to enjoy my stay. Now that I have my own family and visiting new places has been part of our yearly tradition, I realized how each cent counts. Of course, food and hotel rooms are non-negotiable and we want our stay to be as comfortable and pleasant as possible. So, my husband and I posed a challenge on ourselves as to how we can still save despite being on vacation.

Here’s what we did:

Photo by Tax Credits, Creative Commons, Flickr
Photo by Tax Credits, Creative Commons, Flickr

1. Set aside. My husband and dad are advocates of this whole set aside – money thing. So before we left for our trip to Baguio, we already allocated our “vacation money” to its corresponding expenses. This means that in our P30,000 pocket money, we already set aside the payment for hotel room (P11,200 for two nights) and toll fees (roughly P1,200). So, we’re left with P17,600.00, which we can spend on food and other expenses.

Still, this doesn’t mean we have to spend the entire amount. What was left must still be spent wisely.

2. The power of “instant food.” Don’t get me wrong. I am not an advocate of anything instant especially on food. Still, there are instances when instant food and drinks are acceptable. Every time we travel, 3-in-1 coffee, cup noodles and snacks are always given a spot in the luggage. At least when one of us gets hungry in the middle of the night and room service is only up to 10PM, we can munch on something.

3. Refrain from using credit card.  I am a firm believer of not spending on something you don’t have – yet. If you have been reading my money tips, you will notice that I don’t advocate the use of credit card. Well, it’s okay to use one as long as you pay the full amount after or you have cash at home – it’s just that you don’t want to bring the entire amount especially when travelling.

What I like about using cash when on vacation is that I can check whether I’m spending too much already. By using cash, I can easily track how much I’ve spent and control myself from spending on something unnecessary.

4. Watch what you spend on. I know, this is easier said than done. But come on mommies. Unless you don’t pay attention to where your money is going, you will end up spending more than what you can afford. That is now how it goes. If it’s possible to collect receipts or even jot down how much you spent on this and that, then better. This way, you’ll know which areas you can budget or stay away from.

5. Choose “pasalubongs” wisely, in case you decide to buy.  That’s the thing with Filipinos. Every time we visit a place, we always make sure to buy small tokens for our friends and relatives back home. When it comes to pasalubong, shirts and key chains will always be a crowd favorite. A lot of our friends who go out of the country give us key chains, so you can imagine how many we have at home. Haha!

When it comes to buying pasalubong, we always make sure that we still give something that is within the budget and can only be found and bought in that place. This way, giving something is more meaningful, plus, you know that what you gave won’t go wasted.

6. Bring your own water. Water is our best friend. And it has been a cardinal rule to always bring (lots) of water every time we travel. Sure, hotels have complimentary water bottles but it will never be enough for us. And if you buy one, most establishments charge you with a higher price. It may not seem a lot but bringing your own water can still help you save few pesos, which is not bad.

My husband would always say, “travelling is a luxury.” That’s true. If you can afford to travel, then that’s great. But that doesn’t mean you have to spend a fortune on three to four nights of stay away from home. Remember, living in debt is never cool. And even when travelling, learn to spend money wisely.


  1. Michelle Solee (@michisolee)

    January 6, 2015 at 11:56 pm

    I’m doing most of your list except for #3 because I don’t want to carry cash so I always use my credit card. 🙂 Travelling is a luxury but it is the only thing that makes you richer. 🙂

    1. Ayi

      January 7, 2015 at 12:55 am

      Like what I always say, there’s nothing wrong with using a credit card. As long as we pay the amount we spend in full to avoid finance charges 🙂

  2. mamaspeaks

    January 7, 2015 at 12:46 am

    I don’t use my card also during travels. I tend to prepay in advance which tends to be cheaper so whats normally left to bring is our pocket money. We sometimes tend to go over board with credit cards around!

    1. Ayi

      January 7, 2015 at 12:54 am

      I agree! It’s so easy to swipe lalo when you’re in a different place or out of the country. Minsan it’s hard to control spending :))

  3. AciGirl MB

    January 7, 2015 at 4:35 am

    I also bring my own water kahit mabigat 🙂 mahal kasi if bibilin sa labas specialy sa mga pasyalan at malls. and I too belive in the power of instant goods 🙂

  4. nilyncartagena

    January 7, 2015 at 4:52 am

    You’re definitely right about all this. We’re planning to visit Baguio thus summer agaagain and I hope we don’t spend too much. I’ll be mindful of these tips.

    1. Ayi

      January 7, 2015 at 6:22 am

      You should try The Forest Lodge 🙂 I made a review about this actually. Hehehehe

  5. Renz

    January 7, 2015 at 6:17 am

    Terrific tips! I am learning a lot from your posts 🙂

    1. Ayi

      January 7, 2015 at 6:21 am

      Thanks 🙂 I’m glad you found my posts useful and helpful 🙂

  6. MrsMartinez

    January 7, 2015 at 7:36 am

    These are good tips! I don’t buy pasalubong na when I travel especially now that I have atoddler in tow. Sa kanya palang ubosna oras namin hahaha


  7. Sol Razo

    January 8, 2015 at 1:06 am

    Agree with all the tips you shared Ayi, especially the instant foods. Though I do not also encourage taking instant foods but sometimes we need to be practical especially during travel times.

  8. Jho Tacorda

    January 8, 2015 at 12:09 pm

    I agree with everything. It’s really necessary to set aside and keep receipts so after the vacation pwede pa din magassess ng expenses.

  9. May De Jesus-Palacpac

    January 8, 2015 at 1:26 pm

    It’s good to have a smart head when traveling. People tend to splurge on getaways and staycations.

  10. Mommy's Money Challenges and Money Saving Tips Mommy Bloggers Philippines

    January 8, 2015 at 10:38 pm

    […] Mommy Ayi, saving while traveling is always possible. Planning ahead, bringing your own water and instant food are just some of her […]

  11. Kat | Petite Momma

    January 9, 2015 at 4:04 am

    I agree with you. For us, for pasalubongs, we opt to buy something for the whole group (like families, workmates) that they can eat and share instead.

  12. Maria Teresa Figuerres

    January 9, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Thanks for sharing these helpful tips on how to save money while travelling. I’m guilty of using credit cards to purchase things, but I make sure (with hubby’s help) that the full amount is always paid.

  13. Maan

    January 9, 2015 at 5:55 am

    I agree with everything you listed here! I myself try to save up consistently for at least 3 months before a trip. I must say that I’m inclined to use a card (credit, debit, or prepaid) over cash because it’s more convenient and safer.

  14. Janice

    January 9, 2015 at 1:16 pm

    This is a very timely post. A lot of people are now already planning for their summer vacation, including us! 🙂

  15. tweenselmom

    January 9, 2015 at 1:58 pm

    Great tips! I guess family trips are essential for us to grow so we should save and invest for them. Experiencing other places make us realize how beautiful the world is.

  16. Cheanne

    January 9, 2015 at 3:35 pm

    Great tips! It’s really a good idea to set aside a budget and stick to it.

  17. Peachy @ The Peach Kitchen

    January 11, 2015 at 11:26 am

    Great travel tips. If you don’t think about your expenses and allocate accordingly, you might end up being short on budget.

  18. Chinky Magtibay (@chinkymagtibay)

    January 12, 2015 at 1:27 am

    Very good money tips. I admit that it’s easy to get carried away when you’re out traveling!

  19. Mommy Levy

    January 17, 2015 at 8:51 am

    Great money and travel tips you have here. I agree with the “Refrain from using credit card” part. We always pay in cash because it is easier to check if you are overspending na.

I Would Love to Hear from You :)