From my past trips and expeditions , these points have drastically reduced the expense of travelling. These points might not be applicable all at the same time, but can make a great difference.
1. Pre - book : The plan is to ensure that before we set course for a particular destination we already have our travel plans pre-booked. This is very useful for us when we have limited resources and time. We usually get some discounts while pre-booking in the offer period and it surely make a lot of difference.
2. Pre - plan: We jot down lot of things which cannot be booked or planned . We still plan for these to avoid unnecessary un-calculated spending. These may not always be fully successful, but they will give us the necessary heads up for a lot of things to come.
3. Group travel : While travelling on a group our expenses has always been the minimal. During my recent trips be it domestic or international trips, the travel budget was too less in compare to while i used to travel alone or in two. One of the simplest things we do is carpooling, share rooms , share food and drinks which is more efficient and adds lot of fun. We can save on practically everything. We even manage decent discounts off things that we might not get when travelling alone. Safety is one less concern that we have to worry about when we are travelling in a group to an unknown location.
4. Travel during the off-season: This is one of the easiest ways of travelling economically. Even travelling before or after the peak season also helps to an extent. We find good rates and low crowds at tourist destinations. We went Ladakh during September which was towards the end of the season. We hardly found any traffic on the whole trip and enjoyed the charm all around.
5. Pack less: Packing smart is very important because a lot of our travelling cost will depend especially while flying. Less cargo makes us mobile and that means faster and cheaper travel.
6. Networking smartly : I always check if anyone lives at our travel destination. I check with my friends if they have contacts in places we are going to visit. Ask them if we could stay at their place while travelling in small group. Even if not, they can guide us to places that are more cost-effective, thereby making our travel spending more justifiable. Being guided by the locals helps to reach the right place for shopping and dining. It helps to experience the best during the short span of time.
7. Using technology wisely: There is a lot of information available on the internet that will help to understand the destination better and optimize on the way we travel there. Offers from MakeMytrip, GoIbibo has always been a saviour while travelling in India. Booking.com, Trivago, Tripadvisor ,Airbnb helps to get more reliable reviews and affordable living spaces across the world.
8. Shopping tips: Listing out the things to buy before we land at our destination helps us to manage the budget for shopping. Even taking reference from locals to find the place where they shop got us nice deals. While at Gangtok we followed our local driver to a wholesale market where we bought some amazing souvenirs at rock bottom price. While we checked the same items at MG road it was double the price and at the airport it became triple. I prefer to buy those thing which i wont find at my area. While at Ladakh i got some original pashmina shawls which would have cost me atleast thrice at Delhi and hardly find a genuine one at our city.
9. Cost cutting: While travelling on an extremely tight budget, we need to lower down on useless expenses. If we can do without it, then we do without it.