In a past article here on Traveling Newlyweds, we showed how you can enjoy luxurious travel without spending a lot of money. While it's good to plan and monitor your expenses with regards to your destination, the practice of saving should start early on in your trip.
After all, anyone who travels wants to save money, and we’re always looking for ways to save in everything we do. From the hotel and accommodations to the food we eat, travelers in general want to find the most affordable choices possible, but what we don’t always realize is that we can save money even before we leave the airport.
Airports are notorious for being non-budget friendly places. The items, including food, are generally expensive, with Boarding Area reporting that it’s because even restaurants and retail stores have to pay fees to the airport for operating. “Airports as public entities make things more expensive too,” they write. “There are often monopoly suppliers of certain goods that all restaurants are restricted too.”
But of course, aside from restraining yourself from buying things at the airport, there are other ways to save as well, including:
1. Taking the Express Train
Whenever people travel to the airport, they either ask friends and family to take them, or take taxis, as they’re more convenient. However, many people forget that most airports now have their own express railways. For example, Singapore Changi Airport has a train station that’s accessible by foot from two of its terminals, with the first train arriving at 5:26am and the last departing at 11:18pm. Many people often forget this, but it’s a very convenient way to get to the airport.
2. Choosing Long Stay Parking
There are still many travelers who take their cars to the airport, especially those who are coming from somewhere relatively far from the air hub. If you’re driving yourself to the airport and staying away from home for a few days, airports also have options that allow you to stay frugal. As a point of reference, London’s Gatwick Airport has both short stay and long stay parking, according to the information on airport parking resource Parking4less. Gatwick also has a meet and greet option that can work for passengers in a hurry, and its parking lots also have shuttles that go straight to the airport. This is generally the same across all leading airports, especially in Europe so make sure you do your research well before you set off on your travels.
3. Only Exchanging a Small Amount of Money
Convenience tends to cost a lot, which is why, if at all possible, you should exchange your currency pre-departure. Foreign exchange booths at the airport charge two fees: a service charge on top of a high currency exchange rate. To avoid such hefty costs, travel expert Krystin Arneson suggests that you exchange just enough to get you into town so that you can search for reputable international services like Western Union. It also might be slightly cheaper to withdraw cash from a local ATM depending on your bank, as each financial institution has their own rates for foreign charges.
Traveling doesn't always have to be an expensive hobby, as you can find small ways to save on even the most trivial things. Follow these three tips, and you’ll find that traveling isn’t as expensive as you first thought.