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How to Travel Smart and Save Money: 5 Tips from a Financial Adviser

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Introduction

Traveling is one of the most rewarding and enjoyable ways to spend your retirement. You can explore new places, cultures, and experiences, and create lasting memories. But traveling can also be expensive and stressful, especially if you don’t plan ahead and use the right tools. As a financial adviser who loves to travel, I have learned some tricks and tips that can help you travel smart and save money. In this blog article, I will share with you some of the best resources and strategies that I use when I travel, and how they can benefit you too.

Wise Card for Travel Spending

One of the biggest challenges of traveling is managing your money across different currencies and countries. You don’t want to pay high fees for exchanging money, withdrawing cash, or using your credit or debit card abroad.

That’s why I recommend using Wise Card, a debit card that lets you spend in over 50 currencies at the real exchange rate, with no hidden fees. Wise Card also gives you access to a multi-currency account, where you can hold and manage your money in different currencies and send money to over 80 countries with low and transparent fees. Wise Card is easy to use, secure, and convenient. You can track your spending, lock and unlock your card, and get instant notifications on your phone. Wise Card is a must-have for any traveller who wants to save money and hassle on their travel spending.

TripAdvisor and Google Reviews for Finding the Best Things to Do

Another challenge of traveling is finding the best things to do in your destination. You don’t want to miss out on the attractions, activities, and experiences that suit your interests and budget. But you also don’t want to waste your time and money on tourist traps, scams, or low-quality services. That’s why I always check both TripAdvisor and Google Reviews (found either on google maps, or by searching the destination in google) before I book anything.

TripAdvisor is a great source of information and reviews from other travellers, who can give you honest and helpful feedback on hotels, restaurants, tours, and attractions. You can also find useful tips, photos, and videos, and compare prices and availability. Google Reviews, on the other hand, is a great source of information and reviews from locals, who can give you a different perspective and insight on the places and things to do in your destination. You can also find maps, directions, opening hours, and contact details. By looking at both TripAdvisor and Google Reviews, you can get a balanced and comprehensive view of the best things to do in your destination and avoid any unpleasant surprises.

Skyscanner for Finding the Best Flight Deals

One of the biggest expenses of traveling is airfare. You want to find the best flight deals that suit your schedule, budget, and preferences. But you also don’t want to spend hours browsing through hundreds of websites and comparing prices and options.

That’s why I use Skyscanner, a flight search engine that helps you find the best flight deals from thousands of airlines and travel agents. Skyscanner lets you search by date, destination, departure and arrival time, number of stops, airline, and price. You can also set up alerts and notifications and get tips and suggestions on when and where to fly. Skyscanner is fast, easy, and free to use. However, you should also be careful of hidden fees and charges that some airlines and travel agents may add to your booking, such as baggage fees, seat selection fees, or booking fees. You should always read the terms and conditions carefully and check the final price before you confirm your booking.

Booking on a Credit Card with Travel Insurance

One of the most important things to do when you travel is to protect yourself and your trip from any unforeseen events or emergencies, such as flight cancellations, delays, accidents, illnesses, or theft. You don’t want to end up paying a lot of money for medical bills, lost or damaged luggage, or missed connections.

That’s why I always book my flights and hotels on a credit card that offers travel insurance. Travel insurance can cover you for a range of situations and expenses, such as medical expenses, emergency evacuation, trip cancellation or interruption, baggage loss or delay, and more. However, not all credit cards offer the same level of coverage, and some may have exclusions, limitations, or conditions that you need to be aware of. You should always check the terms and conditions of your credit card’s travel insurance policy, and make sure that it covers your needs and expectations. You should also keep your receipts, confirmation emails, and other documents that prove your booking and payment, in case you need to make a claim.

I have 2 credit cards with travel insurance, but the one I use most is the AMEX Airpoints Visa Platinum Card. It’s not as widely accepted as other Visa or Mastercard’s, but the earn rate for Airpoints is excellent, and the travel insurance is very good.

Klook for Booking Experiences

One of the most fun and exciting parts of traveling is booking experiences that let you enjoy your destination to the fullest. You can book tours, activities, shows, attractions, and more, that cater to your interests and preferences. However, booking experiences can also be time-consuming and costly, especially if you book on the spot or through intermediaries.

That’s why I use Klook, a platform that lets you book experiences online or on your phone, at discounted prices and with flexible cancellation policies. Klook offers a wide range of experiences across Asia and beyond, from cultural and historical tours, to adventure and nature activities, to entertainment and nightlife options. You can also find skip-the-line tickets, exclusive deals, and local guides. Klook is convenient, reliable, and user-friendly. You can browse, book, and pay for your experiences in a few clicks, and get instant confirmation and vouchers on your phone. You can also read reviews, ratings, and recommendations from other travellers, and get customer support 24/7.

Other Useful Tips

  • Use a VPN (virtual private network) to secure your online activity and access geo-restricted content when you travel. A VPN can protect your data and privacy from hackers, advertisers, and government agencies, and let you access websites and services that may be blocked or censored in your destination. You can find many free or paid VPN services online, but make sure to choose one that is reputable, fast, and secure. I use NordVPN, which is a paid service, but very comprehensive.
  • Use Google Maps offline to navigate your destination without using data or Wi-Fi. You can download maps of your destination before you travel, and use them to get directions, find places, and explore your surroundings by saving destinations. You can also use Google Maps to find public transportation options, bike routes, and walking paths.
  • Use Google Translate (an app) to communicate with locals and understand signs, menus, and labels. You can use Google Translate online or offline, and translate text, speech, or images. You can also use Google Translate to have a conversation with someone who speaks a different language, by using the conversation mode or the transcribe mode. This was an absolute lifesaver for us in Japan and made thew whole experience really easy.
  • Use Google Photos to backup and organize your travel photos and videos. You can use Google Photos to store your photos and videos in the cloud, and access them from any device. You can also use Google Photos to edit, share, and create albums, collages, animations, and movies. You can also use Google Photos to free up space on your phone, by deleting the photos and videos that are already backed up.

These are just all tips and tricks that I personally have found useful. None of these links or comments are sponsored or paid, they’re just all in here to help.