Money-saving travel tips for retirees

Retirement isn't always about taking it easy; it's about embracing newfound freedom and embarking on delayed adventures. According to COTA's 2023 State of the Older Nation report, a whopping 67%* of retirees are gearing up to hit the road in the next year. And guess what? That number spikes to a staggering 88% for those with incomes over $100,000. 

In this article, we’ll explore

  1. Budgeting travel wisely
  2. Seeking off-season destinations
  3. Utilising travel cards
  4. Making your travels unforgettable and affordable!

So, whether you're a seasoned jetsetter or a new explorer, here are some money-saving travel tips to ensure your retirement escapades are as fun-filled as they are budget-friendly.

1. Budgeting for your journey

Embark on your adventure with a well-crafted travel budget. Dive into the details, from transport and accommodation, to meals and souvenirs. With a clear budget, you'll dodge any unexpected money hurdles. Plus, researching average costs for your destination can help you set realistic expectations and identify money saving areas.

2. Travel in shoulder/off-season

Why follow the crowds when you can beat them? Embrace the beauty of traveling during shoulder or off-season periods. Picture this: pristine beaches all to yourself, shorter lines at famous landmarks, and best of all, hefty savings on accommodation and activities. Plus, you might stumble upon hidden gems and local festivals that are off the beaten track.

3. Consider the exchange rate 

Stretch your travel budget by choosing destinations where your dollar goes further. Researching currency exchange rates and economic trends can help you identify destinations that will allow you to enjoy luxury for less. Whether it's eating pierogi in Poland or enjoying cocktails on the beach in Thailand, pick places where the exchange rate works in your favor.

4. Look at travel cards to reduce transaction costs

Say goodbye to pesky transaction fees and hello to savvy spending with travel cards like the WISE card. These cards offer real exchange rates, no mark ups, and often waive foreign transaction fees, giving you more bang for your buck. Plus, some even come with perks like travel insurance and airport lounge access. 

5. Uncover free/low-cost activities

The best things in life are free. From captivating street performances to breathtaking nature trails, there's a world of adventure waiting to be explored without spending a dime. Keep an eye out for free walking tours, museum days, and cultural events that offer a glimpse into the heart and soul of your destination. 

6. Eat like a local

Save on dining expenses by eating like a local and exploring street food stalls and markets. Dodge the tourist traps with inflated prices and opt for authentic local eateries, where you can sample delicious cuisine at budget-friendly prices. Pack snacks and drinks for day trips to avoid overspending on meals while soaking in the sights.

7. Use public transport

Opt for public transport around town. Ditch the pricey taxis and private transfers in favor of buses, trains, and ferries, which not only offer more budget-friendly fares but also immerse you in the local culture. Take advantage of multi-day passes and discount cards for additional savings on transport.

Retirement is the beginning of a thrilling new chapter. So, pack your bags and get ready to make memories that'll last a lifetime (without breaking the bank!). Remember to plan ahead, stay flexible, and prioritize experiences that offer the greatest value for your money. Happy travels!


Information correct as at 10 April 2024.