Travel Tips for Budget-Savvy Families

I love travelling. I love the idea of visiting a new place, enjoying the community, trying new food, and being away from home even for a few days. Let’s admit it. Travel and saving are two concepts which often don’t go well together.

When I was younger (and still living with my parents), travelling was never an issue. Now that I’m older and a family on my own, I want to make sure that my kids get to experience what I had without being too heavy on the budget. I want them to visit places, see with their own eyes, and experience the things they see in books. I have to admit – balancing travel and budget can be challenging especially when there are kids in tow.   

Nonetheless, here are my tried-and-tested travel tips without being too heavy on the budget: Traveloka 2On Planning

  • Whether it is booking for a hotel room or buying tickets for Disneyland, we make sure to plan early and plan ahead. Booking early is cheaper, thereby helping us save more. Plus, we were able to get some great deals at a lesser price.    
  • Set aside “Vacation Money.” The good thing about planning early is that we are able to give ourselves at least a month to save up for the trip and forego unnecessary expenses in preparation for the trip.
  • Booking online may be convenient, but before I book a hotel especially for domestic trips, I always make it a habit to call the hotel directly to check for any available rooms and ask for the “best deals.”
  • Make use of budget travel websites such as Traveloka. There are great deals and discounts, which helps lessen the expenses. At the same time, some budget travel sites include tour package and other promos to help us save more. Traveloka 1

The Trip

  • Shopping is inevitable especially for trip overseas, so I make it a point to pack light. It gives me more room for new clothes in the luggage, plus I don’t have to worry about paying for excess baggage fee.  
  • This is a must: bringing our own food and water. Bringing snacks, instant noodles, and bottled water help me save a few hundreds, especially when my kids ask for food.
  • My husband has a habit of bringing tumblers during our trips. Instead of buying water (in case we ran out of supply of bottled water), he asks water from the hotel and have it filled before we leave.
  • Allocate the vacation money. The night before our scheduled trips, my husband and I portion our vacation money for “non-negotiable items” like accommodation, toll fees, and gas. Whatever is left, we usually spend on food, shopping, and other expenses, although we don’t necessarily finish them all.
  • If travelling abroad, keep the receipts for all purchased items. There are countries like Singapore and Australia who follow a Tourist Refund Scheme where tourists can claim refund for goods and services paid for. Traveloka 3

 On Food and Transportation

  • If we can, we walk, especially when going somewhere in short distances. It’s a good exercise too!
  • Consider public transport, especially when going out of the country. During our family trip in Macau, we took a cab on the way to Venetian. Cab drivers don’t allow squeezing too many passengers in the car, so we had to take two cabs since we were six. Just imagine how much we could’ve saved if we took the bus.
  • One thing I enjoy about travelling is food. I enjoy street foods, especially when out of the country, and don’t limit meals in the hotel since it can be costly. Sometimes, you get to experience what a particular place can offer based on their food outside the hotel. True story: during our Hong Kong trip a few years back, my sisters and I got hungry and craving for food. Instead of ordering from the hotel, which is way expensive, we decided to explore the streets of Hong Kong and ate in one of the small restaurants. The food was great – and cheap too. Traveloka 4

Travelling is a luxury, but this doesn’t mean one should compromise the entire savings when going on a trip. Of course, there are some things you can’t compromise such as safety and comfort, but at the end of the day, travelling is also about the experience and creating memories with your loved ones – without depleting the savings.

24 Comments

  1. momi berlin

    September 12, 2016 at 8:44 am

    Reading a lot about Traveloka lately and I might consider checking this out. i also love travelling. It makes me appreciate people more and of course, learn of new words, discover new recipes and meet new friends. Your travel tips are very much appreciated as well.

  2. Malot

    September 12, 2016 at 12:25 pm

    I agree with the tips you have shared. Our family is fond of traveling too, and we tend to travel both with kids and senior citizens (in-laws). It’s the first time I’ve heard of Traveloka though; I’ll keep it in mind when I plan our next family vacation. Thanks for sharing! 🙂

  3. nilyncartagena

    September 12, 2016 at 10:29 pm

    Being that my husband isn’t with us right now, we haven’t really traveled far for vacation. But surely we will when he comes home. 🙂 These are very important tips I can use in the future.

  4. Mommy Queenelizabeth

    September 13, 2016 at 4:56 am

    Great tips here! Travelling especially with kids and family needs a lot of planning and budgeting ahead of time.. Thanks for sharing your tips!

  5. Michelle Solee (@michisolee)

    September 13, 2016 at 5:30 am

    I agree with your tips. I also bring drinks and snacks to save money. If I may add, we took advantage the free shuttle bus of Casino hotels so we did not spend any money for our transportation in Macau. 🙂

  6. Coi Ibanez

    September 13, 2016 at 7:14 am

    Very helpful tips, thank you! Will keep these in mind. Haven’t traveled with my little one yet because yes, I’m kind of afraid. But I think I’m ready now as my little girl’s really gala. Hehehe

  7. Michelle

    September 13, 2016 at 6:35 pm

    Hi Momma Ayi. Thank you for the tips! It is my dream to travel with my family that’s why these tips mentioned by you will be very useful when we finished savings enough money for our vacation trips. Hopefully soon! 😀

  8. Anna “Mommy Anna” Plaida

    September 14, 2016 at 2:02 am

    we also bring water and snacks during our trips, mahal ang water sa labas. same here I divided the money na para hindi magulo, baka magulat ka na lang naubos na pala lahat s shopping

  9. Melisa Centino Sanchez

    September 14, 2016 at 2:16 am

    Our family we love travel and we love exploring other places, budgeting is one important thing to consider when we plan to travel. Indeed these following tips is very helpful and we need to consider.

  10. Lifestyle News Site

    September 14, 2016 at 10:06 am

    Hi Ayi! I also bring baon whenever we go on vacations. Saves me a lot plus we get to enjoy our favorites without splurging 🙂 – Arge

  11. Juvy Ann

    September 14, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    My family loves travelling too. There is so much joy for us seeing stuffs we just read on books for real and upclose. The secret for us is careful and advance planning.

  12. Teresa Gumap-as Dumadag

    September 15, 2016 at 12:50 am

    Planning is crucial in any endeavor. It makes a lot of difference in the outcomes. We get to save a lot by simply planning our travel ahead and well.

  13. Maan Laxa

    September 15, 2016 at 8:27 am

    When my son was still a newborn baby, I was afraid I had to give up travelling because of him. Glad to say that since he was born, we’ve been travelling even more and to farther places too! It just takes good and thorough planning and budgeting.

  14. Celerhina Aubrey

    September 16, 2016 at 4:56 am

    Travelling with kids is really difficult but fulfilling. Thanks for the tips. Will keep it in mind.

  15. May De Jesus-Palacpac

    September 16, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    A friend once described to me that she didn’t want to be a “tourist” — meaning book tours and packages and what she did when she went abroad was to walk around like the locals. It sounded so appealing until someone told me that it’s also the best way to cut down on expenses (walk, I mean). So that’s def going to happen. We need to save up for comfy shoes for the walkathon. 🙂

  16. mommykach

    September 16, 2016 at 6:34 pm

    One of our family goals this year is to travel with the kids. I agree with your tips. If when we’re just going to the park or mall, I swear packed sandwiches, bottled water and biscuits saves us loads 🙂

  17. mamabelblogs

    September 17, 2016 at 2:52 am

    Very helpful tips! I particularly like traveling, so this is very beneficial to me! Thanks for sharing!

  18. Joy

    September 17, 2016 at 3:09 pm

    I also love to travel! I’m so blessed to have a partner in life who does too! And aren’t we blessed enough to have a daughter who loves to travel as well! Hahaha! Travelling can really deplete one’s savings if he doesn’t know how much he has to begin with and how much he has to spend. Budgeting – sometimes it’s so nice to hear but hard to do, it’s doable though.

    Bringing fruits, sandwiches and water for snacks will really help you save some money which could be use for getting decent meals. 🙂

    Thank you for sharing! 🙂

  19. Neri Ann

    September 19, 2016 at 12:01 am

    The best one for us would be to allot vacation money first before we can travel. If we don’t have the budget first, we can explore the nearby city where we will not spend much.

  20. mhaan.a-ds

    September 19, 2016 at 3:18 am

    Our family also loves to travel and I hope our travel to Korea next year push through. I will remember all your useful tips especially on booking our flight and hotel. Thanks for sharing!

  21. Maria Teresa Gregorio-Figuerres

    September 19, 2016 at 3:26 am

    Travel plans for the year are being cooked up by hubby. We’ll keep these suggestions in mind. Thanks for sharing!

  22. Ma.Me.Mi.Mommy

    September 19, 2016 at 5:25 am

    These are great tips! One must really set aside a budget for travel and try to stick with it. It’s very easy for the expenses to balloon especially when you’re in a vacay mood. 🙂

  23. mrsEnerodiaries

    September 26, 2016 at 1:52 pm

    Great tips. Gotta use this as we might go to Baguio on Christmas Season. 🙂

  24. Lady Anne Louise Barrun

    September 26, 2016 at 11:34 pm

    Travelling is one of the thing we usually don’t do because I need a month preparation for it. It sounds OA but ugghh it’s so hard to travel with your family if we’re lacking for preparation. These tips really help me to be organize and more prepared.

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