30 May Helpful Tips for Traveling in Asia on a Budget
No one should need convincing to go backpacking in Asia. With its glistening temples, raging rivers, and cavernous mountains, this destination surely has something for any types of traveler. Even first-time backpackers would agree that traveling here is relatively easy and incredibly cheap! Just follow these helpful tips so you can make your budget last as you from one Asian country to another:
Just because you are a penny pincher does not mean you can’t have fun traveling. One of the most popular and cheapest ways to travel nowadays is by backpacking. Grab a sturdy backpack, invite some good friends, get a map, and set out onto an unknown new place. The key to a successful backpacking is to pack light. If you are having a hard time carrying your bag due of its weight, you will miss out on seeing more things or trying more activities. Traveling with just one backpack also saves you money with airlines since you no longer have to pay extra for checked in bags or overweight luggage. Planning to travel for more than a month? You can still take a backpack and bring a week’s worth of clothes. Just be ready to do a little laundry once in a while so you have a set of fresh new clothes to wear the following week.
Be good in haggling
What I like most about shopping in Asia is that almost everything can be negotiated. Whether you are buying some souvenirs for your friends or you are looking for a decent yet affordable room for the night, you can get a discount if you know how to haggle. To make your money last, remember that haggling should be a part of your backpacking journey. Don’t be shy to ask for discounts, as almost everyone else is also doing it. Just be sure to have the exact amount of money before you begin negotiating since some locals will not give you a good exchange rate. Stay calm, polite, and assertive even if you fail to get the discount that you want.
Take the public transit
If you find renting a car or taking a cab too pricey, you can always go for the public transit. Do as the locals do, especially in countries like Singapore and Taiwan where the public buses and trains are very efficient and comfortable. It’s also a great way to observe the day-to-day activities and mingle with the locals. You might even get a chance to meet other backpackers along the way.
Walk a little extra
Walking is much cheaper than hopping on a cab or riding a train. You will save between the mileage cost, tipping, and best of all you will have an instant workout. It is for your body, the environment, and most importantly your wallet.
Make new friends
One of the many thrills of backpacking is to travel somewhere you’ve never been before and meet a whole new crowd of locals and travelers alike. You can do this whether be it you are solo backpacking or with a group. Aside from making your adventure fun and exciting, traveling with friends is also good for your budget. You can split the costs of almost everything, from transport and food to accommodation and activity fees. It also a great way to minimize risk as someone will look after you in emergency situations like getting sick or injured while on the road.
Rent a hostel with a kitchen
This type of accommodation is becoming more and more popular, especially to those who are offering couch surfing services or homestay services. Check to see if the host has a communal kitchen where you can prepare a quick breakfast or grab a snack. Often there is a complimentary kitchen with some utensils and appliances that you can use. Preparing a few meals at your hostel will save you a lot of money in the long run. This is a great money-saving tip most importantly to those who enjoy cooking.
Try one of those overnight buses
It might not be as comfortable as your last night’s sleep at a cozy hotel but by riding an overnight bus you are hitting two birds with one stone – you can maximize your travel time and minimize your accommodation budget.
Rent a scooter
Renting scooters in countries like the Philippines or Thailand offers you freedom and flexibility to visit your choice of tourist spot according to your preferred budget and time. For just about $6 per day, you can roam around a city without a fuss. Just be sure to wear your helmet and always take your license with you.
With all these tips in mind, you are now set to start your new adventure in Asia. Feel free to start a conversation in the comments section below for questions or suggestions.