How To Do Europe Like A Boss Without Blowing All Your Cash!
Our favourite game right now is trying to figure out how most of our mates can afford their lives, especially the ones running off to Europe each summer!
But Spending tens-of-thousands on a Eurotrip is f*cking hard to save for, actually impossible for some. And why does it even have to cost an arm and a leg to see what Europe has to offer?
The answer is, it doesn't. We have proof that you can have a bang on time galivanting around Europe and still come home with savings, courtesy of Aussie singer-songwriter, Eleea Navarro.
A "hard worker and a good saver", Eleea is the best person to give top tips on how to experience the best the world has to offer without spending a fortune.
1) Keep track of all your expenses
"I make sure I include absolutely every dollar I spend, including food, ATM withdrawal fees, phone credit, etc. I then convert it to Australian dollars so that I'm consistently looking at a familiar currency. This helped me stay on top of how much I was spending each day, what I was spending my money on, and how much I had spent overall. As time went on, I could also calculate how much I was spending each month and estimate whether I would be staying under my overall budget." Cha-Ching!
2) Try going for a home-cooked meal once in a while
"While tasting the local cuisine is an integral part of traveling, you can still do it wisely. I generally always booked hostels with free breakfast, or made sure that I had a kitchen in my hostel or Couchsurfing host's home, so that I could make breakfast for myself."
"I also packed tea and sachets of powdered coconut milk. These ingredients were light and easy to carry around, so I always had them on hand. This meant that I wasn't relying on my Couchsurfing host to feed me, and I always got a decent breakfast, so I had the energy to explore. I also cooked dinner whenever I knew I'd be in a place for a few days and could eat the leftovers. When eating out, I also shopped around. Getting out of the tourist hotspots, or asking your hostel for recommendations, will usually guarantee you a more authentic meal for a lower price. I also brought a water bottle with me everywhere, so I wasn't buying drinks out all the time - that one small trick saved me a tonne of money!"
3) Resist the Uber temptation
This one's pretty self-explanatory: "Walking is not only a great way to orientate yourself and experience the culture of a city, it will also save so much money on buses, trains, taxis, and tours." Not to mention, Busabout's Hop-On, Hop-Off tours are a great way to get from A to B and make new friends!
4) Go for hostels and Couchsurfing over pricey hotels
"Accommodation will probably eat-up the biggest portion of your daily spending money, so it's always great to try and keep it down as much as possible. For about half of my trip, I stayed in hostels. I used Hostelworld and Hostelbookers apps on my phone to book them. I usually filtered them by price, then location, so I could book something close to the Busabout pickup and drop off spot. These apps are great because you only pay a deposit initially, or you can pay an extra euro and have a flexible booking. However, if I knew I was definitely going to be staying in a particular hostel, I would often look at their website to see if there were any advantages to booking directly with them. Often they would offer free breakfast or a percentage off the price if you booked through their website."
"Couchsurfing is also a great way of traveling. Basically, it's a free Air BnB, but because you're not paying to stay with your host, it's important to be helpful and respectful. I used this method for the other half of my trip and found it to be great. I paid to 'verify' myself on the Couchsurfing app and initially I got some of my friends to write reviews on my profile so hosts knew I was a real person."
"There are some advantages and disadvantages to Couchsurfing, but generally, I loved it and it was nice to balance my time between locals and other travelers. I also think it adds a really authentic element to your travels and allows you to see things other travellers don't always get to see."
5) Lookout for free tours
Finally, everything's so much better when it's free, right? "I'm not going to lie, I became a bit obsessed with free walking tours... I found these so informative, not only because you're learning the history of the place you're in, but also because the guides are locals that tell you all the tips and tricks so that you don't get ripped off, as well as all the great places and things to see, eat and do. I learnt so many ways to cut lines or get the most out of different tickets, thanks to my walking tour guide. The 'free' tour concept is that you'll do the tour (usually 1.5 - 2.5 hours) and then you'll leave a tip at the end for the guide. The guides only receive half of what everyone tips them, and the groups usually include a maximum of 30 people."
Find out more on Eleena here
Get out and book your next trip here
Listen to Eleena's tunes here
PICS: MTV Travel Editor Takes The UK
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