Archive for the “Travel Tips” Category

How to Find the Perfect Apartment on Sites Like Airbnb

I used to hate renting apartments from websites like Airbnb, Wimdu, Homeaway, or Roomorama. As a solo traveler, I preferred the social atmosphere of hostels. It was simply easier to meet other people. And when I did want something other than a hostel, I used a hospitality network or stayed with friends. But since first writing three years ago about how I didn’t like this type of accommodation, I’ve actually grown to love it. A LOT. While I may not use […]

Help Stop the Promotion of Unethical Tourism (Boycott TBEX!)

Every year, a travel bloggers conference called TBEX is held in North America. I’ve gone many times. This year, the conference is being held in Cancun, Mexico and, as part of the offering of pre-conference activities, they are offering dolphin encounter experiences where you can go play and swim with captive dolphins. When I saw this, I was shocked. Captive dolphin experiences are a mass market, irresponsible form of tourism and it’s shocking that a travel organization that often talks […]

How to Find a Cheap Airplane Ticket

Airline tickets seem to get more expensive every year. That flight that cost $200 last year is $400 this year and, as flights often represent the biggest expense of someone’s trip, these higher prices are keeping more people at home. While the era of dirt-cheap air travel is over, there are still ways to find deals. The four major reasons prices go up and down are competition, supply, demand, and oil prices. Together, these four measures affect a lovely thing […]

How to Find a Cheap Hotel Room: Sites to Use and Sites to Avoid

As much as I love hostels and other forms of cheap accommodation, there is something nice about the luxuriousness of hotels. They are clean and quiet, feature comfy beds, strong showers, and lots of soap I can take for later. But luxury comes at a price. Hotels certainly aren’t cheap and I hate spending a lot of money for a room I am only going to be in for a few hours. It’s why I mostly avoid hotels – I […]

How to Take a Cruise for as Little as $30 Per Day

Cruises can be expensive affairs. First, ships reel you in with a “cheap” room and an onboard credit but then smack you around with high-priced drinks, non-included restaurants, and dollar-a-minute Internet. A couple of years ago, I went on the Oasis of the Seas (one of the largest boats in the world) on a seven-day cruise around the Caribbean. The listed price of this cruise? $800 USD. That’s expensive for a week of cruising. You could go to Southeast Asia for […]

How to Use the Sharing Economy to Travel on a Budget

The Internet has changed travel. Sometimes hasn’t been for the better (one just needs to see how many people are checking Facebook in a hostel to agree) but it has allowed people to share, connect, and collaborate in ways that haven’t been possible before. And for the budget traveler and culture enthusiast this change has been terrific. There are now so many more ways to travel on a budget as well as get the most out of your destination and […]

How to Avoid Paying Bank Fees While Traveling

Banking overseas is more than just putting your card in an ATM. When you travel abroad, banking overseas involves knowing three things: how to avoid paying bank fees, eliminate foreign transaction charges, and get a good exchange rate. I know too many people who travel overseas and pay ATM fees and get hit with credit card transaction fees. There’s no need for it. You didn’t save up all this money in order to give it the banks, right? I know […]

How Pat Got a Free Business Class Ticket (and You Can Get One Too!)

Last month, my friend Pat came to me with a problem – he wanted to fly Cathay Pacific business class round-trip from the U.S. to a conference in the Philippines. He had only a few frequent flyer miles and was all like “travel hacking, what?” He needed help. In the words of Barney Stinson: “challenge accepted!” I had two months to get Pat the 110,000 miles he needed. I’ve written about traveling business class for free before, but as with […]

Cheap Places to Travel on the US Dollar

The United States dollar isn’t what it once was. Though it has gained strength recently because of the ongoing debt crisis in Europe, it has fallen against the Australian, New Zealand, and Canadian dollars as well as just about every other major currency in the world. (It dropped greatly against the Swedish Krona while I was there this summer!) As a constant traveler, I worry about currency moves like only a Wall Street trader would. Small changes in the value […]

Cheap Ways to Travel Across Europe

Even with the falling Euro, traveling around Europe can still be fairly expensive, especially if you are traveling long distances or miss out on that killer fare from Ryanair. I sometimes get sick to my stomach at how much transportation can cost even for the shortest distances. But, despite the high valued Euro, high transportation costs, and general expensiveness of Europe, there are still many ways to travel around Europe affordably: Megabus Megabus is a cheap way to get around […]