Saving Money While Traveling

Traveling is one of the greatest experiences we can have, but it can also be prohibitively expensive at times. Luckily this is changing everyday. Flights are generally becoming more affordable, especially with many budget airlines opening up. Still there are other ways to save, especially if you want to travel to several places at once. This article lists a few tips for getting the most out of your money when you want to see more than one location during your travels. This all requires a bit of advance preparation, of course, but the savings make it worth it.

1. If you're interested in a particular airline, check out its destinations online.
Most of the time information about a certain airline's destinations are clearly available online, on Wikipedia and general information sites. This can be a good start to get an idea of where you can go with a particular company. Also, even briefly looking at a list of destinations can give you an idea of what potential layovers and transfers you can make for a few days (more on this in the next section). Layovers for a few days are an excellent way to see more of the world without having to book an expensive, separate ticket.

2. Use Expedia and other sites to check for airport transfers
While booking your tickets on Expedia, other similar sites, or even the airline's official website, you can easily see where you can make layovers. Layovers and transfers are a reality of airport travel - sometimes an airline just doesn't offer a direct flight from one city to another. However you can make this work for you, because sometimes you can book a ticket that lets you stay in a destination for a few days before moving on - oftentimes for the same price as just a few hours layover at an airport. Note that some budget airlines don't allow transfers, however. 

To give a personal example, I am living and traveling in Seoul, South Korea right now, and was interested in traveling to Guam. While booking tickets on Expedia, I noticed that Korean Air flights to Guam often had layovers in Osaka. After a bit of playing around with the site, and choosing a multiple destinations flight from Seoul>Osaka>Guam and back to Seoul, I discovered that a ticket letting me stay in Osaka for a few days was only 30 dollars more! I ended up taking a direct flight to Guam instead, but it's a great example of how you can make layovers work for you.

3. However, sometimes separate flights are better. Mix and match different flights for great savings.
As of this writing, I'm traveling in Asia, however a few months later I will most likely return to the States. Direct tickets from Seoul to my hometown cost around 1000 dollars. Since I'm interested in visiting different destinations, though, I have been playing around with Expedia to see if I can visit anywhere else on the way for cheap.

I was unable to find an airline with a good layover to another place for a few days. However, I did notice that direct flights from Seoul to Hong Kong cost around 300 dollars. After checking how much direct Hong Kong to USA flights cost, I found that they cost around 700 or 800 dollars. For the same price or a little more, I could have a nice little vacation in Hong Kong. This is a great example of how mixing and matching a bit can give you the opportunity to visit great places for reasonable prices.

Traveling is expensive, but there are ways to cut down a lot on some of the costs. Layovers for a few days, and mixing and matching different airlines' flights are both excellent ways to check out some fantastic cities while you're on your way to your main destination.


Lonely Planet Japan (Lonely Planet Travel Guide)
Amazon Price: $29.40 Buy Now
(price as of Oct 16, 2013)