Best budget holidays Best budget holidays

The ultimate guide toBudget Travel


Often we can put off an overseas trip because money is tight. But with regular flight sales and some careful planning it really is possible to explore the planet on a shoestring. Sometimes you just have to be a bit clever with where you go, and when you go.

If you’re hankering for a change of scene but don’t want to completely break the bank, you might find a little inspiration below.

Budget destinations

Some countries will always be cheaper than others, so consider these destinations that are known to be budget-friendly.

Bali is a popular cheap and cheerful destination for many Australians, thanks to air carriers offering regular cheap flights. Most Southeast Asian countries are easy to do on a shoestring – Vietnam, Thailand and Malaysia are all kind on the hip pocket (and you can eat amazing Asian cuisine for a pittance).

Another place that is relatively cheap and quick to get to is New Zealand. A great budget option is hiring a campervan to explore the islands (and it’s stress-free, as they drive on the same side of the road as we do).

Entertaining Champagne fantasies on a (domestic) beer budget? A large section of Fiji’s best eateries, activities and palm-fringed cottages fall right into the ‘Is that all?’ category.

Mexico and other parts of south and central America are also destinations to consider if funds are tight.

Many people presume European travel is expensive, but if you manage to land a good flight deal, there are some ways to travel in Europe that won’t bleed you dry. If you’re clever enough to take advantage of the many free museums, pack picnic lunches, tour cities by bike and foot, research transport passes and book Airbnbs in advance you can do it on the cheap.

There are also some destinations (such as Morocco) that will be more affordable than the big cities like Paris or Milan.

Budget travel tips


Investigate the different ways of getting about. Hiring a car or getting a tourist’s travel pass in advance may save you big bucks once you’re there.

Choose your time wisely

It may seem obvious, but check when peak season is before you go and schedule your trip around that. Do your research and make sure there isn’t a big event (ie Rugby World Cup) when you’re planning on going, or you might cop some nasty price hikes.

Set up flight alerts (and subscribe to airline’s newsletters for sale alerts)

It’s remarkable how cheap flights can be if you’re lucky enough to jump on a sale. If you’re flexible about your travel dates you really can land a bargain.

Budget accommodation

Your accommodation costs can amount to a huge expense when you’re travelling but there are some ways to keep the costs down. There are plenty of great camping options around the world, as well as new and excellent hostels (that are a far cry from the flea ridden joints you may remember from your 20’s). And of course, Airbnb has changed the travel game significantly – a hot tip is to try and stay in one place for a little longer, so you can get a better price with a longer term rental (plus you won’t have to pay so many cleaning and service fees). You may also like to explore the option of a working holiday, where you receive free board.