Travel is back in full swing this year with the easing of COVID-19 restrictions around the globe. Unfortunately, global inflation is on the rise, with airfares alone being 27% higher than pre-pandemic prices. No need to fret though. If you’re planning your next YOLO trip like me, these tips will help you stretch that dollar on your next overseas adventure.
Snag the best flight deals
You might be tempted to simply book a budget airline flight, but the truth is they aren’t always the cheapest. Budget airlines often have added charges for picking your seat, check-in baggage and in-flight meals which might result in higher fares overall. Of course, booking in advance and on off-peak days like Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday might also help save you a couple bucks.
Using an aggregator like Booking.com or Agoda allows you to find the cheapest flight across multiple airlines easily. Searching flights on your browsers in incognito mode will also clear your cookies, preventing flight prices from being affected by historical records.
Never leave without Wi-Fi
The best part about travelling is sharing all the exciting photos and videos from your trip with the folks back home. While most might opt to pick up a SIM card from a local carrier upon arrival, scatter-brained travellers like me can consider picking up a portable wi-fi router instead.
Rather than haphazardly swapping SIM cards in a busy airport, simply power up your travel router upon reaching your destination and connect to it like any wi-fi network. The best part is you get unlimited data and multiple users can connect to the same device, which is especially handy for families travelling together.
A popular provider of travel routers is Changi Recommends. They provide packages to multiple countries at affordable rates. Click here to check their ongoing promos which start from as little as S$3.16/day.
Walking is the way to go
There really is no better way to take in a city than walking its storied alleys and streets. I can’t remember how many times I’ve stumbled upon delicious local eateries while roaming about. Resist the temptation to book a ride or taxi and save up that cash for shopping, food, or your other adventures.
If you do need to travel, be sure to pick up a frequent-travel card like the Oyster card in London or the JR Rail Pass in Japan to maximise your savings. You’ll save time at the tills too since you won’t need to top up or purchase tickets as single trips.
Travel insurance is a must
Everyone dreams of the perfect getaway holiday, but the truth is accidents or other unexpected events can happen even while we’re abroad. Not only do they create inconvenience and uncertainty, they can hurt your pocket badly depending on the extent of the mishap. During my family’s most recent trip to Taiwan, both my mum and sister came down with Covid and what could have been a nightmare was calmly handled by our insurance claims assistant. With 24/7 support and a deep knowledge of the prevailing guidelines, the agent got my whole family home safely without any delays. Claiming for medical expenses was also straightforward and efficient.
If you’re looking for a robust travel insurance plan that covers everything from trip cancellations for any reason, Covid-19 cover and even add-ons for winter or water sports, check out the Travel Plans from Singlife. MINDEF/MHA members enjoy bonus discounts too!
Kick it like a local
At the end of the day, no one knows the ins and outs of a city like a local. Sites like Tours by Locals also allow you to book private tours led by residents of that city or town for a personal touch like no other.
Alternatively, chat with your Airbnb host, the local barista or storeowner for insider tips on the best spots to hit up for food, unique experiences and more. They’d most likely recommend places and activities frequented and enjoyed by locals at local prices. This will help you save a fair bit of money, so you won’t find yourself broke by the end of your holiday.
1. Source: The Straits Times, Singapore, “Why airline tickets prices are sky-high right now”, accessed on 13 February 2023.
Source: 2. Trip.com, Singapore, “7 Expert Tips on How to get Cheap Flight Tickets, accessed on 13 February 2023.