By John DiScala, Founder and CEO, Johnny Jet,
Business trips are important investments that many businesses can use to help them expand. That’s especially true for startups that need the growth, but don’t have the funding to back it.
The good news is that traveling with a limited budget isn’t hard. Here are a few tips that’ll help you save money on your travel expenses while still experiencing an enjoyable trip.
1. Travel during the week.
When you’re looking to cut corners on your travel expenses, one of the first things you should look at is what day of the week you’re traveling. The best and cheapest days to travel are Tuesday and Wednesday. Adjust your business trip so that you’re scheduled to depart on either of those days. It doesn’t hurt to look at later flights either.
2. Compare budget airline hidden fees.
Budget airlines are the cheapest airlines around, but they come at a price. If you decide to fly with one, then you have to plan ahead and know what you’re getting into. Things like Wi-Fi, checked bags, seat assignments, and even food and drinks often come at an extra price. If these factors aren’t deal-breakers, a budget airline can save you money.
3. Use points earned from your travel rewards card.
If you’re looking to save money on traveling, consider redeeming the points and miles you’ve earned. A few ways to earn are through the airline’s dining program and shopping portal, booking and using your card for travel, and putting bills on autopay.
If you’re new to earning points and miles, look at signing up for credit cards that earn the most for your frequent purchases. For instance, if you spend a lot on dining or on advertising fees, look at cards that earn points for that.
4. Rent a house.
Consider using sites like Airbnb and Booking.com to find apartments and houses that are for a reasonable price near your destination. Sometimes houses are more expensive than hotel rooms, though, so make sure you’re comparing prices.
By renting a house, you can buy groceries and cook a meal instead of having to eat at a restaurant for every meal. Plus, it can be fun to see what the locals eat.
5. Use Uber or Lyft.
There are times when you don’t need to rent a car, and you can walk to your destinations. But there may be other times when you need a vehicle, and taxi fares are high in that area. With ridesharing services, you can pay less than you would for a taxi or rental car. Plus, you won’t have to worry about parking fees.
6. Travel light.
When you’re traveling on a budget, one of the last expenses you need is a checked bag. If you’re going on a short business trip, you should only bring a carry-on. Try to minimize the number of things you will need.
If you’re going on an extended business trip and need to bring your luggage with you, consider using a luggage shipping service, like Luggage Free, to help cut costs.
7. Put your money on a debit card.
If you’re trying to stick to your budget but you know that you’re easily tempted, don’t bring your credit card. To avoid overspending, put your money on a debit card. Then, the only money you’ll have to spend is on that card.
Although you can leave your credit cards at home to prevent you from spending money, unexpected situations are always occurring and you don’t want to be caught off-guard by not having access to your money. If you’re traveling with a trusted team member, consider giving your credit cards to them. If possible, get a small business credit card to help you remain more accountable.
When you’re traveling on a budget, with a little planning, you can have a pleasant experience. Just remember to pack light or ship ahead, put your allotted budget on a debit card, and opt out of the traditional rental car and hotel. You may even find a new love for travel by doing business trips unconventionally.