Today I’m tackling something I regularly get asked…how to save money whilst travelling through Europe. Here are some of my best travel hack to help save you money on European travel, to help you travel more frequently, and to more places!
1. Think About Travelling Off Season
It will probably come as no surprise to you that travelling in Summer is in fact the worst time to travel in Europe. Firstly, you’ll find that prices are hiked, all of the hotels are booked, and museums are queued out of the door. Secondly, if you opt to travel during the Summer, you’ll encounter the least authentic European experience. Why? None of the locals will be around during the summer. They cleverly escape the Summer madness and flee on holidays of their own (a wise decision). This is particularly true for cities like Paris and Rome, but also through some of the smaller, less well-known towns and countries in both Central and Eastern Europe.
So, when is the best time to travel in Europe? Pretty much any time other than the Summer months. Make sure to rule out June, July and August! If travelling in the summer months is unavoidable, then you should definitely do some research to determine where you will be able to avoid the crowds. Visiting ‘up and coming’ destinations is often a great way to avoid the masses.
2. Opt for Family or Locally Run Businesses
If your main goal is to save money on your trip, you’ll be happy to hear you can do this without resorting to sleeping in a dorm room or living solely off greasy carbs. Typically, opting to use family run businesses will also provide the best value for money. If you’re looking for the best deals that offer both comfort and a great price, then this will be your best bet!
3. Choose Your Travel Focus (Before You Leave)
It’s easy for you to look at a map of Europe and let your eyes go wide at the vast travel possibilities it offers – London; Vienna, Rome: Berlin; Prague; Venice; Paris…the list goes on and on. This is why it’s really important to give your trip a focus (before you leave!). This will help you stick to your travel instincts and make sure you tick off all the places on your European travel bucket list.
If you’re really interested in learning more about Modern World History, then you should definitely focus on a travel path that winds through Central/Eastern Europe. If you’re more of an adventurer and looking for something a little more off the beaten path, then there are a number of hidden gems lying further East. I definitely recommend spending some time in the Baltic states and visiting Tallin and Riga.
4. Travel to countries not on the Euro
One of the biggest money saving tips (that I learned the hard way) is to travel to countries not yet on the Euro. You should definitely take advantage of the current exchange rate and consider visiting countries like Hungary, Croatia, Poland, Lithuania, Czech Republic, or Romania.
5. Don’t forget to Price Compare!Opting to use a budget airline to travel will easily save you money, however, with so many budget airlines now offering great deals to top European destinations, it’s important to price compare. I still think Skyscanner is one of the best ways to compare the best flight deals, but don’t be afraid to do a little digging yourself in case any of your favourite budget airlines don’t pop up in the search.