Traveling the world has a special spot on anyone’s bucket list. It is a once-in-a-lifetime trip you’ve saved for over years, and now you have a big pot of cash to spend on it. This is not an ordinary short trip you can cancel anytime if something goes wrong and just come back, hopping from country to country requires a whole new level of organization and. Managing your budget is the essential factor for enjoying your trip around the world to the fullest. Here are some crucial tips you should consider to avoid running out of cash halfway through.
SET YOUR BUDGET
Before you can start tracking your expenses while traveling, you have to set a budget, to begin with. You will want to create a financial plan realistically based on your previous research on what you expect to spend in each country. In addition to this, it is advised to include a healthy contingency for unexpected extras. Planning your budget requires thorough research of various factors like the exchange rate and cost of tickets for your route, cost of living and accommodation in each country, etc. It might sound like a lot of work, and that may be true. However, setting your budget precisely upfront will save you a lot of potential trouble.
OPEN A NEW BANK ACCOUNT
The main way you will access your money during your trip is by withdrawing money from debit cards using ATMs. They can be found almost everywhere and it’s the easiest way to withdraw money when you need it, so you don’t have to carry huge amounts of cash with you all the time. However, many banks charge huge fees for withdrawals abroad. That’s why we strongly advise checking your bank’s current fees and if they are high, change to a different bank account with lower fees. This may save you quite a bit of money that can be spent on a much better cause.
When it comes to tracking your expenses, different things work for different people. Some prefer using old-school methods, such as writing down everything in a notebook and calculating the costs manually. On the other hand, if you are used to using excel (which now operates as google spreadsheets) for just about everything, you will find it more than a useful tool for your expenses tracking during your long trip. As you will be transiting through many countries along the way, it will be super handy to make different columns for different destinations and categories and tally the totals up at the end.
USE MOBILE PLATFORMS
There are many personalized mobile platforms available today on the market, to help you stay organized on the go and keep up with all your purchases. These platforms are connected to your bank account and designed to automatically monitor your expenses and gather them together. As the professionals from Keeper Tax explain, besides allowing you to have a clear insight on all of your purchases in one place, the platform also scans for multiple potential write-offs you would have probably missed. This largely contributes to saving money on anything you can along the way.
TAKE MULTIPLE CARDS
Cards can often get stolen, eaten by ATMs, and blocked by banks, so if you have any problems with your main debit card you won’t be able to access your cash. Besides, since you are traveling almost permanently, it can be tough to get a new card if the current one has a close expiration date. That’s why we strongly recommend taking multiple debit and credit cards on the trip with you. An alternative to a debit card is a prepaid card you load up with the money. This may give you a bit more control of your spendings. As an additional backup, you can keep a part of your money stored on your PayPal account.
Some travelers suggest using cash rather than cards, which can be lost or charged high fees for overseas transactions. The cash can be stolen too, maybe even more easily than cards, moreover, when you lose cash, your money is gone, while the cards are protected and can be canceled quickly. However, withdrawing the exact amount of cash you have planned on spending at a particular location or a particular day, may give you better control over finances and help you avoid spending more than expected.
Traveling around the world can be a life-changing experience, and it is crucial to organize it well in advance. As the financial aspect can be the most challenging part, having these tips in mind will hopefully save you a lot of trouble during your trip.