How We Travel Affordably

One of the questions we get asked most frequently is about how we travel so often. The answer is pretty simple – we’re actually second cousins to the Kardashians, so we have lavish expense accounts, and secret private jets to fly us everywhere. KIDDING GUYS. Please don’t send me hate emails. But really – we don’t. We’ve been travelling this much since before it was my fulltime job, and when we were both poor college kids working at a restaurant. How you might ask? A secret deal with the devil? An elaborate Bonnie and Clyde routine? No! Just some simple tricks that you can do too (do I sound like a self help book yet?).

I heard the other day that millenials are killing the credit card industry (along with everything else except the color pink), and got really sad. I’m not an advocate for irresponsible credit card use, but I am an advocate for free miles. Basically the only way that David and I can fly anywhere is because we’re mile wealthy. We chose one airline (American), to be loyal to a long time ago, and have all of our bills and expenses hooked up to American Airlines credit cards, which loosely translates into us never paying for airfare.

-Can You Drive It?
We both drive super fuel efficient, practical cars (you’ll have to pry me out of a Honda with the jaws of life). A lot of times, when we’re taking a trip, we road trip it, which cuts the cost in half (and saves our miles for Europe or Hawaii!).

-Who Do You Know?
Growing up, my dad always said that half of life was who you knew. I think that he meant that in the business world (hi dad!), but I’ve applied it to my travel world, and shamelessly crashing with friends when we travel (hi friends!). A lot of times when we’re going somewhere, and we know someone, we’re staying with them.

-Stay Local
If you’re going somewhere that you don’t know someone (we still haven’t managed to make any friends in Europe, much to my croissant loving hearts despair), consider choosing a rental over a hotel. Normally you can find something on Airbnb or VRBO for considerably cheaper, and having your own space means you can make a meal, or a coffee at your own place, which will also save money, which can add up.

-Have a Plan
We’re pretty elaborate vacation planners – not just because we’re OCD, but because we’ve found that it saves us a ton of money. Knowing what we’re doing, and where we’re eating, allows us to create a budget, and stick to our budget. Before I go on a trip, I have a fairly detailed plan for each day – that way I know how much I need to have saved for a trip, and I don’t get hit with a surprise bill when I get home. I try to mix up a variety of free activities, paid activities, fancy restaurants, and local food trucks when planning a trip.