Travel Funding Bootcamp: How to SAVE Money to Finance Travel

If you are really serious about wanting to head off on adventures you have to bite the bullet, get lean and sacrifice a few things. You might not like it, but it will mean you will have the money to do what you want, which is having amazing travel experiences. Spending can be controlled and once you see your savings grow it can be addictive!

Here’s how:

  1. Write down everything you spend over the week, e.g. Monday $2.50 magazine or £3.50 coffee. 
  2. Print a copy of your bank account statements.
  3. Get copies of all your big regular payments for mortgage/rent, insurances, utilities, loans etc.

At the end of the week, using your notes and statements you can analyse your expenditures. The best way to do this is to input all your expenses into my Travel Bootcamp Checklist and then use the tips below to reduce your outgoings.

*To access the checklist, you need to subscribe to the Soulful Travels newsletter.

You can try the tips without the checklist, but it really does help!


save money for travel

  • Mortgages and Loans

Get a better interest rate. Phone around to compare your current arrangement with the current market. Be careful of any clauses in your existing arrangement but there are plenty of lenders willing to give you a great deal.You can always mention this to your current provider and if you indicate you may leave because it’s so good, they often then ‘match’ the competitors.

  • Rent

Consider downsizing and moving to a cheaper abode. The more you save the less time you will be there, and possibly even leave for several weeks at a time, so why shell out extra? Take a look at house shares and cheaper areas.

  • Utilities

Switch to energy saving light bulbs, turn off the lights when you leave a room, air dry clothes rather than tumble dry, don’t take baths, have quicker showers, turn the heating down, unplug all your chargers and devices. Basically, become incredibly environmentally friendly. You can also switch provider to get a better tariff, phone around to see what deals are available.

  • TV bundles

Switch to online free streaming services. These are alternatives for US and UK audiences or just do something free like reading, cleaning or working out instead. 

  • Other housing expenses

Time to go DIY. One major expense is your cleaner – time to scrub up and make your home sparkling by yourself.

  • Credit card debt

Move your debt via a balance transfer to a 0% interest card and you will be saving every month, allowing you to pay it off quicker and be debt free. Make sure there are no or very small transfer fees. Try to prioritise repaying this and other loans with your savings, so that you are not wasting cash on interest and fees.

  • Car/Home/Health Insurance

Shop around and see if you can price compare your insurance policies with other companies. You can save a lot of money by doing this, as new customers often get special deals and preferential treatment. Go back to your provider and ask them to ‘match’ the deal, if they won’t, then move.

  • Mobile/cellular phone contract

Don’t take an upgrade if you are offered one. Keep your existing phone and move to a SIM only deal, on a rolling monthly basis. Then you can cancel the deal when you are travelling. Give your provider a call and see if they can move you onto a lower tariff.

funding travel by cutting out treats

  • Food and drinks

Make a list of the food you will prepare and eat for the week and shop smart, i.e. only buy these items. Make meals in advance in large batches and freeze some for easy eating. Include meals at work, bring in a packed lunch as those bought sandwiches are sucking your savings dry.

Swap all the take away, restaurant and ready meals for food made at home. This will  help you to save money whilst travelling too.

If you need some help, this website has loads of easy recipes for meals that cost very little. 

Coffee shop drinks – sharpen your own barista skills and carry in a flask.  There is a way to get store quality coffee at home, at a fraction of the shop price.

Snacks – cut them out completely. Do you want a doughnut right now or an amazing custard tart in Lisbon soon? Here are some handy tips on how to beat the cravings. 

Alcohol – cut down nights out. Drinks are usually much cheaper and more rewarding abroad. There are so many guides to help you achieve this.

There are even apps to get free food, which reduces wastage and saves you cash.

  • Transport

Cars are money pits – use public transport, ride shares, Uber/Lyft and bicycles.

Switching to motorcycle or moped can also reduce your outgoings if public transport is not an option.

cut out unnecessary expenditures

  • Personal

Ditch the gym fees – use an app, for example, Sworkit to work out at home or swim, run, power walk as they are free. Here are some free gym options in the US and UK.

Beauty treatments – no more spa manicures, waxes, pedicures, instead save on these by going DIY for treatments or use these tips to spend less. There are usually coupons online to get discount haircuts so use them! 

Beauty products – there are plenty of cheaper options from the non-luxury brands. There are lots of helpful guides to finding great drugstore make up so take advantage of a bargain. 

Clothes – do not buy any new items, try thrift or second hand clothing stores.  

Also no more dry cleaning or ironing services.

  • Luxuries

Flowers – you can live without buying them, honest!

Cards and Gifts – try making them instead. This site will inspire you.

Lottery tickets, bingo, scratchcards, are no longer affordable.

If you do really need to buy something use discount vouchers and coupons, buy reduced items or scour free recycling apps.

  • Finally

Check your account, are there outgoings that you have forgotten about? Get rid of them or reduce them down. This could be subscriptions such as magazines, music streaming, or other regular payments.

Find more things to cut out from your list. Look at anything you bought and didn’t use or didn’t need. Then look again and be hard on yourself. Don’t make those mistakes again.

You really can get down to the bare essentials if you really want to travel further for longer!

get rid of direct debits

Here’s a working example:

In one month if you cut:

  • Bought coffee: £2.50 x 5 days x 4 weeks = £40
  • Cinema outings: £10 x 2 times a month = £20
  • One magazine per week: £3 x 4 times a month = £12
  • Two nights out: £50 x 2 times a month = £100
  • Ready meals: £10 a week x 4 times a month = £40
  • That’s saving: £212!

Add in a few extra savings from shopping around for cheaper insurance or cutting utility bills and you could be adding more than £300 a month to your travel fund.

Remember, when you are tempted to buy anything ask yourself –

Do I really need this


do I really want to travel?

If you need personal coaching to complete this task and reach your travel goals contact me now.

Whether it is how to fund endless travel or to embark on an ethical trip I will get you there.

Within a few weeks, you will be going further, for longer and experiencing more rewarding travel adventures.

Next in Series: Funding Travel Bootcamp: How to MAKE Money to Finance Travelling Further for Longer


7 thoughts on “Travel Funding Bootcamp: How to SAVE Money to Finance Travel

Add yours

  1. Thanks for thanks for this! Some of these things I’m already doing. I want to look through and see what else I can shave off. One thing about the phone. T-mobile offers a $40 plan and whats good about them is that they offer you a small amount data when abroad. I’m not sure which countries exactly but when I was in Germany, Netherlands, and England we had data and no roaming charges when texting. I would say check with your cell phone carrier and ask them what benefits they have for when you’re out of the country.


    1. Sure, that’s a great option *if* you go to those countries regularly enough to warrant the $40/month. If not, pay as you go and getting a local sim card when you land can be even more cost cutting! Worth bringing up Summer as a good saving potential, thanks!


  2. Great ideas! One of the biggest killers for people I think is the amount of subscriptions: Netflix, Hulu, Spotify…

    I saved so much money when I cancelled my Amazon Prime — not only did I not pay the fee, but I wasn’t constantly buying things anymore that I didn’t need, just because I had free shipping!

    Keep saving and traveling 🙂


  3. Really great tips, I think the biggest thing is the mentality of consuming. Travel (long term) made me a lot less materialistic so I’ve been saving tons of money since I’ve been home purely because my priorities have shifted to become second nature. Yet in the past couple of weeks we’ve been surrounded by people who ARE materialistic and it’s made me start to want “stuff” again. It’s so easy to be sucked back into it again!


    1. I know exactly what you mean! I just wrote about the Japanese way of life, especially minimalism in the Soulful Travels newsletter. I try and see every advert as a way of the company tricking me to spend my cash on them rather than me and to focus on selling and downsizing. Let me know if you want a free coaching session with more tips 🙂


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