how to save money for travel

How to Save Money for Travel

For those of you that are new to the blog, Josh and I quit our full-time jobs this past January to travel for 6 months. This wasn’t easy to do since we had a mortgage to pay and a very comfortable life in Toronto but somehow the time felt right and we knew that if we didn’t take the chance now we would regret it. So, we rented out our condo, moved all our stuff to my parent’s place and booked a one-way ticket to Thailand; 17 countries and countless of cities later, we can say it was the best decision we ever made.

So how the we get all the money to do it? This one of the most common questions we get here and on Youtube. Many people think that the idea of long-term travel is completely unattainable or requires thousands and thousands of dollars. For the longest time, we also thought the same thing and it wasn’t until we read, How to Travel the World for $50 A Day by Nomadic Matt that we got inspired to turn our dream into reality.  

When you think about it $50 a day is not that much when you compare it to how much you would be spending at home everyday. Think about it, add up all of your expenses such as your phone bill, car insurance, daily Starbucks, transportation costs; I guarantee you that this averages more than $50 a day. And the crazy thing is that in so many places in Southeast Asia and even parts of Europe, you’ll be spending way less than that! 

So all in all, the good news is that traveling long-term without breaking the back is completely doable! Now the real question is how do you save enough without completely draining your savings? Below are our top 3 tips on how we saved money to travel:

1. Cut back on going out to drink and eat

I know this sounds hard but when you start adding up the numbers, it’s crazy how much money is spent on going out to restaurants and bars. For instance, a typical night of eating and drinking in Toronto can cost me an anywhere between $40-$60 and that doesn’t even factor in all the other costs I mentioned earlier (crazy!)

I totally understand that giving that giving these things up might be difficult, since it’s an important part of socializing. However, if you tell your friends what you’re trying to do, I’m sure they’ll be happy to support you in your goals and will be completely understanding. Also, I would recommend making lunch/ dinner at home when you can, it is much healthier and of course cheaper!

2. Save a percentage of your paycheque

This is something I started doing a couple of months before going away and would highly recommend to anyone who is looking to travel long-term. As soon a you get paid put a portion of your paycheque in a savings account that is designated only for travel.

Yes, this may mean that maybe you won’t have as much disposable income for shopping but trust me, the reward of traveling is so much greater than owning the latest trends. Also, just remember that even if you’re saving a couple of bucks every week, every little bit that you save will go a long way in so many countries.

Bonus: If you’re interested in saving on AirBnB, you can check this out to get $40 off your next stay

3. Sell, Sell, Sell!

This is one of the easiest ways to make money fast. I’m sure we all have things that we are no longer using that we can sell, whether it be clothes, furniture or even appliances. Take advantage of all the amazing sites out there like Craigslist, Kijiji, Poshmark, Ebay and Facebook groups where you can post your unwanted things. I’m positive you won’t miss any of these things when you’re partying on a beach in Bali! 

If you haven’t already make sure to check out my Youtube channel where I talk more about my tips on how to save for travel and my travel experiences! 

If you have any more tips or are currently planning your travel adventure, let us know below!


Need more help planning your trip? Check out these posts:

  1. International Travel Checklist 
  2. Guide to Booking Hostels 


    1. These are great tips to saving money for travel. We are planning a trip to Disneyworld next year, and have been saving for a while. It’s hard but we are making the sacrifices because I know our boys will love the trip!

    1. What an amazing way to spend your young adult years. My hubby and I were able to travel a lot before we had kids and I wouldn’t give that up for the world. And you’re right, travel can be very affordable!

    1. These are great tips! I recently lost my job but I’m trying to make up for it with freelancing. It pretty much cancelled my travel plans for next year, but maybe if I save up a bit from every freelance assignment I can go ahead with the plans again.

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