Ways to save money and time if you want to travel

Updated on 20 May 2014

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Ways to save money and time if you want to travelMoney and time are two important aspects that should be considered when planning for a business trip. A question people often ask themselves when they want to travel is, do I have enough money and time to travel to my desired destination?

This leads one to look for best possible ways of spending less money and time on a particular trip. People often say that travelling is costly and consumes so much time but saving money and time on your trip is something that should be done before travelling. The truth is that, travelling can cost less if you plan in advance.

Visit your bank         

If you are travelling out of the country, check with your bank to find out if your debit, cheque or credit card is part of an international system that operates in a city or country you are visiting.

Some countries accept only certain types of cards and coverage of a major card company like Visa or MasterCard may not be extensive. Therefore, it’s advised that you find out the coverage of your specific card issuer in that country. You should check what other transaction costs are associated with using your type of card.

For example, in the US using a debit card incurs higher bank charges as compared to using a credit card. You should also check if your transaction on your card in foreign currency carry additional costs i.e. with some banks, a commission charged on a transaction done on a foreign ATM is similar to that charged when buying foreign currency at bureau de change.

Contacting your bank to address this problem when you are already out of the country, is costly and time consuming. Costly because you will have to make an international call, time consuming in the sense that some banks take long to rectify your problem.

You should also know where to report stolen credit cards in foreign countries. Before you enter a foreign country, get some of that country’s currency from your bank or a foreign exchange office because it will save you time and also give you ample time to get a good exchange rate. Shop around for the best exchange rates. Keep all credit cards separate from your money and traveller’s cheques, this almost guarantees you won’t lose everything at once

Put your documents in order

Check if the country that you are visiting requires a visa. A visa is a document intended to allow people access into other countries. The difference between a visa and a passport is that visa stipulates reasons why you will be visiting in the country.

It also outlines a certain time frame. It is an addition to the passport, since the two are required. Visas have time limits, and that time extends to six months, so you should make sure your visa is still valid. Also make sure you don’t overstay because immigration authorities of the country you have visited will penalise you for breaching the law.

You can request that your visa be extended if you need some more time, but there are strict measures you must meet before getting an extension. You also need to attach your documents to a travel insurance policy in case you misplace all your paperwork.

Be safe

You should get travel insurance, it is meant to cover your medical expenses, financial default of travel suppliers, and other losses incurred while traveling, either within one’s own country, or internationally.

This can be arranged at the time of the booking of a trip to cover the duration of that trip. If you are going to an area where malaria is in rife you need pills, mosquito repellent and a net to under. You can also ask the safety of your intended destination from your friends, colleagues, or relatives who have already visited your intended destination.

They can give you an insight of your intended destination because some places have a high crime rate. In places where there are robberies, it is advisable that you rely more on credit cards and travellers cheques than cash to avoid being mugged or robbed.  Some of the suggestions to a safe business trip include, keeping your travel plans and accommodation details to yourself.

Research your destination

It is essential to do research before travelling, especially if you have never been to that place before. Travel research equips you with knowledge of places you will be visiting. You can obtain information about the country, city, place that you would like to visit from tourist information offices.

When traveling, research can make you manage your time well because doing a research prior to setting off can give you deep insights into the area. It tells you places to avoid and those you must go. It is obvious that social conventions differ from place to place even within the same country.

Understanding social norms of your destination country, city and place prior to getting there will allow you to understand better about the destination’s social norms.

Make early bookings

You don’t have to worry about an increase in travel costs or full flights if you have booked your trip. Making your reservations well in advance of your trip also gives you the time to compare prices of different airlines, buses and trains.

You should not make reservations before checking and comparing prices. During summer or winter holiday seasons, people take advantage of campaigns done by hotels and travel companies by making early bookings because bookings done during such times are not expensive.

Early booking system works in favour of everyone. People who travel realised that this is the best chance of enjoying a summer or winter business trip that is less expensive.

You should also get in touch with the hotel personnel directly, you can earn better discounts by directly speaking to them. Also try to opt for budget hotels or apartment rentals, which will be cheaper.

Making reservations early gives you the chance to make other travel plans. For example, you might need someone pick you up from the airport. This means, you will want to give them enough notice, which, in turn, should give them enough time to make arrangements.

If you are driving yourself to the airport, take the time to observe all parking options, as well as costs.

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