Backpacking is a wonderful way to experience the world, but unless you take some precautions and plan ahead, you may find your dream trip reaching a little deeper into your pockets than you anticipated. Before you take off for adventures abroad and wonders untold, consider these basic money-saving tips.
It’s one of the basic rules of backpacking, but many people don’t understand that light luggage is about more than just a comfortable hike through the mountains. It will also save you tons on things like baggage fees, porter costs, and border expenses. When it comes to your personal belongings, size and weight matter, so only pack what you truly need.
Know Your Budget
It’s easy to get carried away when you arrive in Cambodia and realize that you can eat on $10 a day and find accommodation for even less. Before you know it, you’ve been there a week and half your budget has been blown on tiny little expenses that add up to a large whole. Before you start rolling in piles of the local currency, and luxuriating in your riches, try to set a realistic, sustainable budget with both daily and long-term limits. Research the local cost of living and know what to expect in terms of food, lodging and entertainment costs.
Secure Your Valuables
It’s early in the morning, you’re standing in front of an unamused guard at the Polish-Ukrainian border and you’ve lost your passport. Does this scenario sound like something out of your nightmares? Make sure you have a plan for securing your money, documents, and identification while you’re on the road. Don’t leave them in your backpack, because that can be stolen or misplaced, but don’t put them into a fanny pack either, as it lets pickpockets know exactly where they should target. Look into less obvious options like under-body clothing, and concealment bands.
Be Savvy to the Tricks
An uncomfortable truth about traveling is that many unsavory characters will try to take advantage of your ignorance as a foreigner. Taxi drivers, for instance, will take out-of-the-way roads to drive up your fare, and street vendors will hike up their prices because they know you won’t understand the true value of their goods. Before you go anywhere, type your destination into a search engine and acquaint yourself with local scams and schemes.
Lock Up Your Belongings Back Home
Self-storage is a backpacker’s greatest asset while they’re away. Not only will it keep your luggage light, the importance of which you’ve already learned, but it will also offer peace of mind that your personal belongings are being safely guarded even while you’re abroad. A professional from a self trustworthy storage in Santa Monica says to look for a local company with good reviews, one that you can depend on to protect your possessions.
These are just a few tips for preparing for your next backpacking trip. Budget carefully, be vigilant against thieves, and you might even come home with money to spare!