Traveling, whether it’s around the world or just your own country, is one of the best uses of your time. It’s a great learning opportunity and gives you the chance to try new foods, experiences, and see new sights. Unfortunately, as amazing as traveling and exploring are, it can get pretty expensive, which is why most people don’t do it as much as they would like to. If you’re travel mad, but happen to be on a budget, the tips below should be useful.

1. Choose Camping Instead of Staying in a Hotel

Now, I’m not saying that I never stay in a hotel. Staying in a hotel obviously has its benefits especially if you’re on a road trip and just need a place to crash for the night without having to unload all your luggage, or if you’re going to be spending most of your time in the city. But if you’re planning to spend some time exploring a national or state park, or are driving across the country with no rush to reach a destination, then why not go ahead and pitch that tent! Whether you’re going abroad or staying close to home, camping is almost always the cheapest option for holiday accommodation. In fact, it’ll be cheaper than the most basic motel. Of course, you’ll have to invest in a quality tent and some other equipment, but you can usually get all of this for much cheaper than your average hotel, and then won’t ever have to buy it again. Camping is great for solo travelers and families alike, and because of how close you are to other holiday goers, it can also be a great opportunity to meet new people.

How to Holiday for Less: Choose Camping

2. Book in Advance

While camping is usually fairly cheap, like with every other type of accommodation, you tend to be able to get it even cheaper if you book a while in advance. For this reason, you should make sure to reserve your campsite as soon as you’ve chosen it. If possible, also try to book out of peak season, as prices will be even lower during these months.

3. Shop Around for Camping Gear

When it comes to clothes, camping equipment, and even the campsite itself, you can usually find cheaper options if you put in some effort and look at different websites. For example, you can easily find coolers like Yeti but less expensive if you try out a few different sites before settling for anything. Just make sure that you’re not sacrificing quality for a cheaper alternative, or you’ll just end up spending more money in the long run.

Related Post: Camping 101: Tent Camping Checklist – What to Expect, What to Wear and What to Bring With You

4. Cook Your Own Meals

When you’re on holiday, it can be tempting to eat out every single day, but this can get incredibly expensive over the course of a week. Instead, buy your own food and cook it on the campsite. You’d be surprised at just how many different meals you can cook while camping. Of course, you can allow yourself one or two meals out as a treat near the end of the week, but most of your meals should be cooked yourself. And don’t forget, even the simplest of meals always taste better outside. Well, I can’t prove this scientifically, but just ask anyone who has ever camped and they’ll agree.

Holiday for Less: Choose Camping

5. Take Your Own Entertainment or Enjoy Nature

The weather is always going to be unpredictable, which can disrupt your holiday whatever accommodation you decide to go for. When it’s raining, windy, or snowing, it can be tempting to waste some money in an arcade or go to the cinema to pass the time. Rather than doing this, bring some books, board games, and cards along with you, and save the money. Also, what better entertainment than hiking in the woods, biking on a trail, or swimming in the lakes, rivers and the ocean (way more fun than swimming in the hotel pool). Most campsites will also have ample of activities to keeps the kids amused. Who knows, they might create a game of their own! If you’re a music lover and like playing an instrument, bring it with you. You’ll be surprised how many people will come and join you!

Holiday for Less: Choose Camping

So the next time you’re making a travel plan but feel discouraged because of how expensive it can get, consider camping. I bet you won’t regret it and will come back rejuvenated. 

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How to Holiday for Less: Tips for Budget Travelers