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How to keep within budget on your gap year

In a recent study conducted by Kalixa, the prepaid card payment company, it was revealed that when it comes to budgeting when on holiday Britons are hopeless. It’s perfectly understandable really. You jet off away from your native land, arrive in a beautiful, warm climate and want to let of some steam.
Be it dining out at some fancy restaurants or trying out he local bars, it will mount up eventually. So here are some useful tips to stop you running out of cash before your holiday has even started.


Designate yourself set days where you plan on doing things that will inevitably cost money. For instance, seeing an important landmark that you are desperate to see.  By doing this, you’ll be able to keep an eye on the amount of proper blow out days that you can feasibly have.


One of the most common financial errors those holidaying make when first arriving in a foreign land is going for food or drinks in the first place they see. If you research before you leave on your adventure, or even from the comfort of your place of stay, there’s a good chance you will be able to find some top venues at a reduced rate, rather than those of the obvious tourist traps. You don’t have to look for dives either, just places that aren’t extortionate. (Why not read our recent piece here of how to do Tokyo on the cheap here for inspiration?)

Eat in often

You can still enjoy the new tastes of the country you are in without spending your lifesavings on one entrée. Of course, one way of cutting back is partaking in the recent trend of street food (if the country you’re residing in is into it, that is). It’s cheap and a handy way of eating whilst exploring. However, it’s also possible to head over to the nearest supermarket and rustle up something at your abode. Just make sure you have a recipe book of the local cuisine, else you’ll spend your time eating scrambled eggs.

Check your change

An ostensibly minor aspect of budgeting, sure, but an important one. Of course, only a very small minority of hospitality jobbies would have the audacity to attempt to bamboozle a visitor to their country, but it can happen. As such, always inquire how much things are before you purchase them, ask for a proper bill and politely speak up if anything seems untoward.

Check the currency rates at your local bureau de changes

Before you leave on your travels, it’s always important to assess which bureau de change will take your money further. On many occasions, it’s the Post Office that will offer the best deal, but there could be place that offers something slightly better. Currently the pound is worth $1.70 (dollars) and €1.26 (euros). Keep this mind when seeking out a god exchange rate, and never do it at the airport, definitely don’t do it when you get there!