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10 Smart Ways to Save Money on Travel

January 13, 2016

Make your New Year’s resolution to travel more a reality with these tips.

You probably already know that Tuesday and Wednesday are the cheapest days to fly even more so if it’s the off season. You already have got fare alerts set up through Airfarewatchdog, a prioritized Facebook follow on Secret Flying, and a bookmarks tab glutted with third-party booking sites. And yet, you could be doing so much more. Here are a few other ways that you can stretch your travel bucks.

Go where the US dollar is the strongest.

This is a no-brainer. Right now, $1 USD is worth $1.43 in Canada. So why aren’t we all on planes to Toronto? (Oh, that’s right: winter.) Currencies in Japan, Brazil, Turkey, Egypt, Australia, Argentina, Thailand, Sweden, Russia, and South Africa all represent favorable exchanges for Americans right now. But remember just because a local economy has tanked doesn’t mean the cost of goods and services went with it. International hoteliers, for instance, often increase their rates to cover a drop in value. In these cases, it pays to look closely at mom-and-pop operators.

Show that ATM who’s boss.

If you travel frequently, set up an online debit/checking account through Charles Schwab Bank. There are no monthly service fees and no ATM withdrawal fees anywhere in the world. And get this: Schwab will even reimburse you at the end of every cycle for ATM fees charged by outside vendors. Pretty sweet.

Invest in a phone plan that travels with you.

Why futz around with SIM cards or rack up exorbitant roaming fees when you can just “internationalize” your phone plan? As an avid traveler, I swear by T-Mobile’s Simple Choice Plan. I pay a modest monthly rate to get normal usage of my phone in the States, plus free international data and text messaging in more than 140 countries. Phone calls abroad cost 20 cents a minute, but I usually save those for Skype, which is zero cents a minute when dialing another Skype user. With T-Mobile, there’s no million-year contract to sign nor hidden fees, and the overseas service is reliable enough rarely 4G or LTE, more often 3G or 2G, and occasionally the dreaded E. (But whatever, E is still better than the alternative, which is dragging around a city looking for WiFi to steal.)

Source: 10 Smart Ways to Save Money on Travel – Condé Nast Traveler

 

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