There are a lot of aspects to planning the perfect vacation and most people generally overlook an important factor, food. This is usually because, unlike airfare and hotel room prices, the price of food is unpredictable. Underestimating how much you want to spend on food may wreak havoc on your pre-defined travel budget.
We are here to give you a few tips on how to save money on food so that you won’t have to worry about breaking your budget during your travels. We would like to share with you some ways that we think could help you save on food while on vacation.
Go for the Local Cuisine
One way you could save a reasonable amount of money on food while travelling is to check out the local cuisine. Whenever you’re headed to a new destination, it is a good practice to research about all the local places to eat.
There is a high chance that local outlets will cost you less than international brands and cuisines. This works well for primarily two reasons. One, you get to taste new and exciting dishes from new cuisines, and two, you get to save money. A new experience at a lower price? Why not?
Make Use of Deals
There are a number of websites and online applications that can help you get lucrative deals and discounts for bars, restaurants, and other food joints. Apart from this, the local newspaper is another place you can look for information on attractive discounts that are available in the region you’re visiting.
Another way to go about this is to read guidebooks on the destinations that you plan to visit. These sometimes have discount coupons or vouchers in them that might come in handy when you want to check out some of the restaurants around you.
Hotel Food to the Rescue
When you are travelling on a strict budget, hotel food can turn out to be your best friend. Do thorough research and choose hotels with kitchens. Many such hotels give you free breakfast, helping you save on breakfast expenses before you head out for the day. Make use of such offers to cut down on food costs.
Another bit of information that can help you save money while travelling – as much as possible, avoid using the mini fridge in your hotel room. They tend to have ridiculously expensive items in them which may be charged to your bill if you use them.
Explore the Streets
It is no secret that some of the tastiest and most budget-friendly food comes from street vendors. It is inexpensive, fulfilling, and you can have as much as you want without really splurging too much money. But, it is very important to be careful while trying out these delicacies, as one stomach bug can ruin your entire trip. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before you try out any vendor:
- Is the food served fresh and hot?
- Is the kiosk hygienic and well maintained?
- Is the vendor following healthy practices around the stall?
It is completely natural to get hungry between meals, and buying snacks on the road can not only be more expensive than usual, but they may not be available either. Just before you start any travel, it is advisable to carry non-perishable snacks like chips, protein bars, dried fruits, etc.
Consider carrying containers, as they can safely store your leftover food and other perishable food items for a little while, allowing you to munch on them later on during your travels.
Moreover, buying bottled drinking water on your journey can be quite a costly affair. A reusable water bottle would be a more pocket-friendly option. Carry a water bottle or thermos with you on your travels as you can always fill them up in your hotel or from public drinking water kiosks.
Hunt for the Best Bargains
Generally, during your travels, you will come across various restaurants that will offer lucrative coupons and discounts. You may find such offers if you go through the tourism website of the destination that you are planning to travel to.
Further, you can also check out international restaurant reservation websites and make use of the various promotions and discounts that they have to offer.
Make the Least Expensive Meal the Splurge Meal
We have all been guilty of splurging a large amount of money on our favourite foods. Unfortunately, that might mean that you end up disturbing the budget you have allotted to food.
Something that can help you save money to a large extent is to control your urge to splurge. Good food is hard to ignore, but you must try and hold off from spending on expensive dishes as much as you can.
Try and make the least expensive meal of the day, the biggest. As we mentioned earlier, breakfast may be complimentary. So why not fill your stomach on a free meal so that you don’t feel too hungry and spend less on food for the rest of the day? Don’t feel shy to do it, it works. Following this strategy might help you save money on food while travelling.
While dining out on vacation, it is important to do your research and look for the best deals, just as you would in your home country. The money-saving habits that you follow at home may also help you save money while on vacation. Planning out your meals and budgeting accordingly might help a great deal. This way, you can enjoy the flavours of your destination without really breaking your travel budget.