If you ever thought that traveling to international destinations was beyond your reach, here is a low budget way to make it possible.
My cousin lives and works in Bangkok, Thailand, and he often invited my husband and me to visit. I thought how wonderful an opportunity it would be to travel somewhere exotic and see him at the same time, but I didn't know how I could pull it off.
I discovered that the key to making that dream a reality, was planning ahead and doing a little research.
Buy airline tickets early.
We saved money by researching ticket prices and purchasing several months in advance. We also planned to travel during the off season when fares were lower. Early purchase also allowed us the time to pay off the credit card we used to buy our tickets with.
Put aside the money in a travel fund.
Since we also didn't want to spend money we didn't have, we set up a travel fund. We religiously set aside a certain amount of money from each paycheck to use for food, transportation and incidentals.
Stay with family or friends.
Instead of staying in a hotel, we stayed with my cousin and saved a considerable amount on lodging and food. We bought some basic groceries for breakfast and sampled local foods from street vendors. On occasion we would treat ourselves with more local cuisine at inexpensive restaurants.
Use public transportation.
Bangkok has various modes of easy to use public transportation. We used mostly the sky train and the occasional hired taxi for longer distance travel.
Check out the local flea markets.
We stayed away from the malls and found some really great deals at the flea markets of unique, local inexpensive items, like clothing, jewelry, wood carvings and paintings.
During our two weeks in Bangkok, we experienced the culture from the perspective of a local. They usually know where the best foods, shopping deals and points of interests are.
I still keep in contact with my international friends and relatives and since I am now in the habit of saving, I maintain that travel fund.
By planning ahead and seeking ways to cut costs at our destination, I found that traveling to an international destination is very possible.
The highlight of my trip…. petting the tigers at the Tiger Temple.