15 “Small” Things You Can Give Up to Save Up for Travel

Save Up for Travel: 15 ‘Small’ Things You Can Give Up

Saving is harder than you think! What do you give up when you feel like you can’t let anything go from your daily routine?

Growing up, I’ve often been told that nobody gets everything; that I’d often have to make sacrifices for the things I want in life. That couldn’t have been any truer, more so now that I’m on a mission to save up for travel.

The first time I saved up for a trip abroad, I had to give up my daily iced latte. I never ate out and I rarely saw my friends. I even resorted to eating last night’s leftovers for breakfast (and sometimes for lunch, too, if the portions were enough). But that was a budget trip for just two countries, Vietnam and Cambodia.

Also read: I Saved Up to Travel Abroad For the First Time When I Was 25 & Here’s What I Learned

Now that my travel aspirations are becoming more ambitious, the saving part has been more challenging as well — especially because I’m in my late 20s. There are bills to pay and priorities to be set. In any case, if there are any other folks out there in the same situation, here are things you might consider giving up to save up for travel, too.

1. Upgrading your gadgets

save for travel

We all know someone who needs to have the latest gadgets as soon as they’re released. But if you’re saving up for something and all of your gadgets are in good working condition, don’t even even look in the direction of any Apple store. Just don’t.

2. Eating out and snacking

Let’s face it: Eating out tends to be more expensive than just staying in and whipping up something simple. You must also take into consideration how much you spend on transportation when you’re out and about.

You’ll also be surprised at how you excessively spend on something as simple as snacking. I always tell people not to deprive themselves of food, but if you’re eating too frequently (worse if you’re eating out!), then that may put a dent in your wallet. It’s not necessarily good for your health, either. So do your savings account and your body a favour by snacking less and eating out less, too.

3. Movies and malls

save for travel

One foolproof way of saving? Not going out at all. If you’re the type of person who watches movies every two weeks, then maybe you should hold back a little on catching your must-watch flicks. Malling doesn’t help, either — unless you can promise yourself that all you’ll do is window-shopping. But then again, you’ll have to spend on transportation and food. And maybe even some milk tea.

4. Excessive use of mobile data

Internet — we can’t live without it! But we can use less of it, which may, in turn, cut down our expenses. Try going online on mobile ONLY when you need to (or when you have wifi access) and see how that affects your monthly bill. Must. Resist. IG.

5. Unnecessary car rides

Whether you drive your own car or use any ride-hailing app a lot, unnecessary car rides equate to unnecessary expenditure. Cab rides don’t help, either. So if you can, walk. If you have a bike, start pedalling stat. Better yet, just stay at home if there’s no reason to go out.

6. Salon appointments

Those monthly salon appointments amount to thousands by the end of the year. You don’t need a trim that often. And you can clean your nails yourself. Your hair also needs a break from time to time if you have it dyed several times in a year. Think of it as a wellness break for your tresses, too.

7. That monthly “reward”

I won’t pretend; I’m guilty of this, too. Every month, when I get my salary, I tell myself I deserve a reward for working hard. It usually turns out to be a massage or some skincare product I’ve been eyeing for a while. The point is, I usually end up getting whatever it is that will make me feel good.

But I know how much I’ll save if I just spend for personal care products that I NEED and not just WANT. I don’t need a monthly reward… and I want to travel… so I guess we can just call it wisely reallocating funds.

8. Anything new

Here’s a tip: Think twice when you’re about to buy something new. This doesn’t necessarily have to be limited to clothes and shoes. It could be a video game, a gadget accessory or even computer software for editing. If it’s new and you don’t need it, don’t get it. Practise self-control.

9. One thing from your glow-up routine

Hopefully, as responsible adults, we all have proper hygiene down pat. But most of us have more than the usual regimen — we have a glow-up routine! Whether it’s skincare or makeup or some hair product you use in copious amounts, just opt for less. If you’re up for the challenge, drop one (or two!) products altogether. If you can’t commit, simply use less of a product. Remember, there are savings in every dollop of shampoo and conditioner you use.

10. Subscriptions you don’t need

Hola, Netflix and Spotify! I know how much you love your online subscriptions, but just think of it as delayed gratification. By giving them up (just for a bit, hopefully), you’ll be able to get closer to your dream destination. Same goes for cable television.

11. Gym membership

Do you really use that gym membership? Good for you if your answer’s yes. But you should know that you can actually get fit even in the comforts of your own place. Home workouts are your best friends during this time. Some of them don’t even require any equipment — all you need is your body weight! So save up for travel while getting healthy.

Bonus: If you do them often enough, you’ll be able to master them and squeeze in a few minutes of exercise in your itinerary even while you’re travelling. Totally a win-win!

12. Buying two of anything

If you’re anything like me, then you like to stock up on supplies to make sure that you have a spare of anything. It’s not hoarding; it’s just being prepared for times that you can’t go to the store. But when you’re saving up, you’ll have to curb this habit. Just buy what you need.

13. Bringing your pet to the groomers

Having a pet is expensive, but we all love them to bits so we’d do anything for them! But while you’re saving up for travel (or for anything, for that matter), you can do the work and groom your furbabies on your own. This also counts as bonding, so your pets will love the experience as well.

14. Dates

Take a note from Beyonce: All the single ladies (and fellas), put your hands up! Rejoice because you actually save a lot by not having to go on dates. And if you’re in a relationship, fret not. All you have to do is make wise date choices. Less wine and dine nights and more of staying in and munching on homemade goodies.

15. Drinks other than water

This may sound funny (and basic), but you actually spend a lot on speciality, sugary drinks. Avoid alcoholic drinks and even hot chocolate — don’t even reach for soda or bottled bubble tea. Treating yourself to a drink like this per week can total to a surprising amount in terms of savings. If you must, live by the “less is more” motto. Drop that vanilla latte with soy milk and velvet foam; just go for a good ol’ latte. Better yet, brew some black coffee for yourself.

As far as budgeting goes, here’s a general rule to follow: Get only what you need. And this starts with a lifestyle check. Try to figure out what you can take out from your daily routine. Then move on to things you buy and activities you do periodically. Happy saving (and travelling, eventually)!

About Author

Alyosha Robillos
Alyosha Robillos

In Russia, Alyosha is a boy's name popularised by literary greats Dostoevsky and Tolstoy—but this particular Alyosha is neither Russian nor a boy. She is a writer from the Philippines who loves exploring the world as much as she likes staying at home. Her life's mission is to pet every friendly critter there is. When she isn't busy doing that, she sniffs out stories and scribbles away on the backs of old receipts. She is an advocate of many things: culture and heritage, the environment, skincare and snacking, to name a few. She will work for lifetime supplies of french fries and coffee. Or yogurt. Or cheese, preferably Brie.


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