When traveling to Europe on a budget, your cost will mostly depend on the type of traveler you are.
When traveling to Europe, I would always end up spending more than I had originally planned.
However, I have grown wiser with time as I managed to spend less than $2,000 on a 4 week-long trip to 7 cities on the most recent trip.
I have learned a number of cost-saving tips that I have shared in this article. I hope you will find them helpful if are planning to travel to Europe on a budget.
These tips will also help you spend less on any budget trip.
This is what we are going to discuss in this article:
- How to save on meals
- How to save on transport.
- How to save on accommodation.
- Tips for saving on meals on a European trip
- Tips to help save on transport on a European trip
- Tips for saving on accommodation on a European trip
Tips for saving on meals on a European trip
1. Before ordering a meal always ask for the price
If you are traveling on a tight budget, I would recommend that you always know the price of the drink and meals before ordering.
I learned this the hard way and it took me not just one but a few times to realize that I needed to know the prices of the meals beforehand.
For example, in Florence, I ended up paying $50 for a Cappuccino. I also found myself paying $18 for a cup of coffee.
For a budget trip, this was quite expensive and not planned for considering that I could get a nice set of meals for just $10 to $15 in other places.
This ended up ruining my daily budget.
See also the Best Money Tips For Traveling To Mexico.
2. Buy meals at grocery stores and bakeries
I realized that most grocery stores have cheap hot meals.
Bakeries are also very cheap, especially in Rome. You can easily get a slice of pizza and a drink for just $5 to $6.
3. Plan your meals wisely
If it is okay with you, you can have one nice meal a day, then eat snacks for the rest of the day.
You may also like these 15 Top Destinations to Travel Internationally Even on a Tight Budget.
Tips to help save on transport on a European trip
4. Buy your train tickets upfront before traveling to Europe
I recommend buying your train tickets online early in advance.
In some cities, it was a rip-off and not worth it. This takes us to the next point.
Most places in Europe are very accessible by foot, Paris particularly.
Therefore, you can just walk and use the money for something else on your trip.
Tips for saving on accommodation on a European trip
6. Avoid traveling during peak season
It goes without saying that the cost of accommodation will be high if you are traveling during the high peak season.
7. Avoid staying in popular city centers
You will pay lesser when you book your accommodation outside the city centers.
8. Stay in hostels
Hostels are much cheaper than hotel rooms and most Airbnb.
But if you are worried about your privacy, you can book private rooms in hostels at a decent price.
NOTE: If you decide to stay in hostels, just make sure you have less backpack, no suitcase, and you’re carrying a lock to lock your bag in the hostel’s lockers when you’re not around.
You may also like these 10 Hotel Safety Tips To Consider When Booking A Hotel.
If you are on a very tight budget you can offer to volunteer at the hostels in exchange for a free room. I have seen many backpackers do it, and they always end up spending so little on accommodation when traveling on a budget.
Other than saving money, these are the other advantages that you get from volunteering at the hostels in Europe:
- You get to interact with other travelers/backpackers and share your experiences. Backpackers usually have very valuable information!
- You get to understand the basic culture and language of the people.
A good place to start is Couchsurfing.
10. Take free local tours
If you’re on a very tight budget, you could consider taking free local tours in Europe. You will easily find many free museums in Europe to visit.