CAN YOU PICTURE YOURSELF HERE?
Are you travelling or would you like to travel on a budget? Why would you? No money? Well, yes, but do you have other reasons?
For me, it’s all about the adventure. You can find 5 star resorts anywhere in the world very much like our 5 star resorts on the Gold Coast.
You might as well stay at home. I would rather stay longer in one place and absorb the culture, meet some locals, learn about the history and customs and experience some of their traditions.
Secret To Frequent Flyer Programs
I like to plan my trip well ahead so I have plenty of time to fine-tune and make changes if necessary. I can book a seat using my frequent flyer points 12 days less than 12 months ahead- this gives me the best chance of getting a seat on the flight I want.
With the Qantas Frequent Flyer Program I earn frequent flyer points by shopping and paying my bills using my Qantas American Express card as much as possible and shopping at Woolworths, Big W and BWS using my Woolworths Everyday Rewards card and choosing the option to convert those points to FF points automatically.
It’s really surprising how quickly your points accumulate. You may even be able to save enough points to fly business class!
You need to be aware of the taxes added to your “free” fare. You cannot avoid these but you can minimize them by choosing a less popular airport. From my experience, Heathrow has the most expensive airport taxes.
Secret To Finding Cheap Flights
Another budget option is I Know The Pilot if you are flexible with travel dates and happy to travel on any airline. My friend flew return to Milan with Singapore Airlines for less than $1000!
Next, I have to decide where I most want to go. This is the hard part. Almost everywhere is on my bucket list. For me, Europe continues to be high on my list.
When to Travel?
I recommend travelling to the northern hemisphere in our summer (their winter) to avoid our stifling summer heat and humidity and to take advantage of the fact that most Australians, and perhaps others, visit in the European summer.
Crowds and queueing up are not my favourite things to do on holiday. I much prefer to stroll along an empty street than to be jostled along in a throng of tourists.
Accommodation may also be cheaper and more available during winter months, but make sure your chosen destination or transport is not completely closed. Inclement weather, closed shops and restaurants are often found in beach and island destinations.
The coldest I have felt during a European winter was actually during a visit to Santorini where the icy-cold winds made outdoor activities impossible, including travelling by boat to swim in the warm waters of the volcanic caldera.
For an extended trip, leaving Australia in September/October allows my body to become accustomed to the cold more gradually.