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12 Money Saving Tips to Help You Save For Your Next Vacation

Over the last 12 months I've noticed more and more people struggling to save money. Some people are struggling due to increase in rent prices, others are struggling because of the increase in the price of groceries - the list of reasons is endless.

Many people are cutting back on the things they used to enjoy because they can no longer afford to spend money on non-essential items. Many are longing for a vacation, but just can't seem to get any closer to their savings goal.

I'm going to share some of my own unique tried and true money saving tips, along with some popular money saving tips that seem to be floating around online. Hopefully some of these tips can help you save money for a vacation, a car, build up your savings, or maybe even help you cut food costs.

Let's get into it!

1 Use social media to your advantage when eating out

You are literally one click away from some of the most powerful tools for saving money. YouTube, TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook are a goldmine!

If you're looking for somewhere cheap to eat, it's as easy as typing in "Cheap Eats X City", for example "Cheap Eats in NYC" or "Cheap Eats in Sydney" (or something similar), and pressing the search button.

And when I say cheap eats, I don't mean cheap crappy food. I mean cheap GOOD food. There are some great YouTubers who visit cafes and restaurants that offer cheap meals, and offer their 2 cents on the cost vs quality. One YouTuber who does this well in New York City is Here Be Barr. I highly recommend checking out the cheap eats videos on his channel if you're visiting NYC on a budget, but still want to eat well.

Phone displaying social media apps.

2 Enjoy lunch outside, dinner at home

In my experience, dining out for lunch is almost always cheaper than dining out at dinner time.

Picture of table with chairs. Plate of food with glass of red wine on table.

Firstly, cafes and restaurants often offer a lunch special, making dining out for lunch a cheaper option. You can often order the same as you would at dinner time for a fraction of the cost. Some places also offer lunch specials that include a drink or salad bar for free, or for minimal extra cost. However, if you're really strapped for cash just order a glass of water - most restaurants will gladly give you this for free.

Secondly, if you love to have a couple of wines or beers with your dinner, you'll be less inclined to do so at lunch time when you still have half the day and a whole night ahead of you. Alcohol can really drive up the prices of going out, so keep that in mind before you call the waiter over for another $12 Chardonnay!

3 Declutter your home

Don't worry, I'm not about to ask you to Marie Kondo you home. But I am going to ask you to evaluate your belongings and have a hard think about the last time you used some of them.

Got a jacket that's in good condition that you haven't worn for the past three winters? Pop it up on one of the popular selling sites like Mercari, Poshmark or Ebay. You can even use Facebook Marketplace if you're too lazy to make an account on a selling website. Everyone has Facebook, right?

While you're at it, have a look around your kitchen and living room and inside your storage boxes. If there's anything you no longer need, see if there are any takers online or within your friendship group... You never know who's in need of a desk chair with squeaky wheels (and may even offer you a couple of dollars for it!)

Warehouse apartment (or possibly store) with jewelry and clothes on display.

4 Meal prepping (ugh, I know!)

I live in a very small apartment and simply don't have the space or patience to meal prep in my current space. But for those of you who do have space and patience, this idea is a great money saver.

Back when I did have a larger kitchen and was able to do some meal prepping, I found I was relying much less on take-out and food delivery, which honestly probably saved me hundreds of dollars a month.

Meal prep doesn't need to mean making breakfast, lunch and dinner for 7 days a week. Why don't you start by making a simple curry or soup that you can eat for a few meals throughout the week?

Three rectangular glass containers filled with brown rice and fresh vegetables.

5 Freeze leftovers

Rectangular glass container half full of curry next to pot filled with curry.

Did you overdo it on the meal prepping? Freeze your leftovers for later in the week, or to take out of the freezer for a lunch or dinner in a few weeks time. You don't need to force yourself to eat the same curry for 6 meals a week and put yourself off curry for the rest of your life.

Use that Tupperware that's sitting in the back of your kitchen cupboard and freeze your leftovers. The leftovers will come in handy for the nights you get home late, can't be bothered cooking, or don't have the right ingredients to make anything anyway.

For best results, I like to eat frozen food within a couple of months or so, but many foods will definitely last longer without any change in quality if sealed well.

I even often freeze fruit when I realise I've bought way too much and there's no chance I'll eat it all before it turns bad, so keep that in mind! Food waste = money waste!

6 Buy fruit and vegetables that are in season

In-season fruit and vegetables are almost always cheaper than anything that's been grown out of season and is being sold at the supermarket.

Persimmons in a wicker bowl.

For example, I live in Japan and even though I love persimmons, trying to buy a persimmon in April is a stupid idea. I may as well wait another 6 months until they're in season and in abundance, and supermarkets can't get rid of the things fast enough.

Prices shoot through the roof when fruit and vegetables are grown and sold out of season, plus sometimes the quality just isn't the same. Keep it in mind when going grocery shopping!

Remember I mentioned freezing leftovers before? You know what freezes well? Bananas! And pineapple! And lemons!

By the way, are we all on board with what a persimmon is, or have I just lost half my audience? (They're those orange things in the picture above!)

This actually brings me onto my next point...

7 Buy frozen or canned fruit and vegetables

Let me start by saying - I was not a fan of frozen fruits and vegetables until recently, and to be honest, I'm not someone who will ever buy all of my fruits and vegetables frozen (or canned). I am also very aware that some fruits and vegetables freeze/can better than others, and want to make you aware of that too.

For example, canned asparagus? Never again. Canned or frozen corn to add to fried rice? YES!

If you're a smoothie fan like me, buying frozen fruit is the way to go. Not only does it save me money, but I love the texture of the frozen fruit in my smoothie.

Take any leftover canned foods out of the can and put them into a proper airtight storage container before placing them in the refrigerator for later use. Unused frozen (not thawed) vegetables can go back into the freezer in an airtight container.

Different types of canned vegetables on a supermarket shelf.

8 Buy off brand (the stuff without the fancy label)

This is a huge one!

Do you ever see raspberry jam with a super plain and boring label? And then you see the fancy French jam with the cute floral label and decide to buy that instead cos the fancy French one MUST be better? Buy the cheap one!

Person standing in supermarket aisle with green shopping basket in one hand and bottle of dark liquid in the other hand.

Buying off-brand food can save you a good chunk of money. I know for some people there is a negative stigma attached to buying the cheaper (or cheapest) option, but I challenge you to compare your regular brand and a cheaper brand and see if you can really taste the difference. And, if you can taste the difference, is the price difference worth it or not?

And to be honest, here's a little secret... The company that makes the $6 jam is often the exact same company that makes the $2 jam using a different label.

So, do I personally buy off-brand items? Sometimes. For me, it depends on the item, and maybe it'll be the same for you too.

9 Use store apps, loyalty cards, discounts, coupons & sales

While some apps and loyalty cards may offer huge discounts, others may not. For some people, using apps and loyalty cards may be more hassle than they're worth.

Person standing at a cafe or restaurant and looking at an app on their phone (only hand visible). Cook in background.

I've seen all kinds of deals on apps, for example 'shop on X day and receive 10% off' or 'spend over $X and receive free delivery on your next order'. There are two important things I want to say about any sale or offer...

Firstly, don't get sucked in! If you use this offer will you end up spending more on your shop than you otherwise would have? Secondly, some of these offers may actually be a great deal and actually save you money! Do your research!

I recently got a 10% discount just by adding a store to a messaging app that I use. Totally worth it! But, joining a membership program that requires a minimum spend of $100 to get a 10c discount? Not for me!

Do your research, know your prices, and don't be afraid to ask staff about loyalty programs. Keep an eye out for deals on social media, as well as in newspapers and junk mail, and be sure to check terms and conditions carefully.

10 Compare prices for accommodation and attractions

Compare, compare, compare! You're never going to save money if you just book the first offer that you see.

When booking accommodation I always enter my travel dates on and, and compare the prices and inclusions to find the best option. Some friends of mine like to call hotels directly to ask about pricing and have often snagged a great deal!

So how about attractions then? It's the same concept. Check the official website to find the price for buying direct, and then check websites such as and for any deals. As always, be sure to check terms and conditions!

Bx office for movie theatre with two people standing at the window buying tickets.

11 Stop spending money out of convenience

Corner store just 2 minutes away, but supermarket 10 minutes away? I don't know about you, but I can often find the same item a the supermarket for a fraction of the cost.

Girl with red umbrella walking on city streets in the rain.

Do you live in a safe neighborhood and have time to walk the extra 8 minutes to the supermarket? Do it. Every dollar adds up. Don't believe me? Let's look at an example...

1 bottle of orange juice at convenience store: $6.00

1 bottle of orange juice at supermarket: $3.20

Let's say I buy one bottle of orange juice a week over the course of a year (and we all know there are 52 weeks in a year).

So, price of orange juice x 52 =

Money spent at convenience store: $312

Money spent at supermarket: $166.40

Total difference: $145.60

That's a difference of $145.60 a year just on orange juice. What else could you do with that money? Stop being lazy!

12 Side hustle (it's what the millennials call part-time work) if you have the time

If you have the time, why not pick up some extra work? It's become easier than ever to work an extra job, even if you have very limited hours.

Four dogs in park on leashes. Dog walkers hand visible holding leashes.

Do you speak another language fluently? Take a look at online translation work. Love dogs? Walk dogs in your spare time! Qualified and able to work with children? Babysitting can pay extremely well! Do you have a bike or car? Deliver food! Are you creative? Design invitations!

There are so many options!

Here are a few well-known websites I've come across that are popular with people wanting to make some extra cash.

Freelance services: Fiverr

This website is also great if you aren't sure what you can offer yet. You can get some great ideas for side hustles on this site! I also occasionally use Fiverr to purchase services myself.

Odd jobs: Task Rabbit

This one is recommended for people who don't mind getting their hands dirty. Some examples of work on here include moving furniture, assembling IKEA furniture, and delivery services.

Dog walking: Wag, Rover

What can I say? If you love dogs, then these apps are for you. Probably best if you live in a city, or an area where dog ownership is high.

Food delivery: Uber, Wolt, Doordash

I think these go without saying. We've all heard of these food delivery services before and know what's required.

Language teaching: italki

This is a good one if you are confident with teaching, and you don't need to be a qualified teacher to join. The teaching is all done online, so you can easily do it from home. I also highly recommend it for language learning, and have used it myself in the past. In fact, if you use this link (as a first-time language learner on the website), you can get $10 free credit when you spend over $20.

What are your money saving tips?

How did I do? Did any of my tips surprise you, or was it a total yawn fest full of ideas you've read on 5000 other blogs before?

Do you have any of your own money saving tips that you'd like to share? Head on down to the comments at the bottom of the page and let me know your best money saving ideas. You'll not only help me out, but you'll also be helping out your fellow readers who may be looking for some new ways to save money.

As always, thanks for reading, and I'll catch you in the comments, or over on my Instagram!

Personal recommendations for booking accommodation, day trip tours and related travel needs. Accommodation: Agoda, Booking, HostelWorld Short tours, activities and day trips: GetYourGuide, Viator Reviews (restaurants, accommodation, local attractions etc.): TripAdvisor Travel Insurance: Visitors Coverage Learn the lingo: italki Cheap travel essentials: Daiso, Amazon

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Image: Hogwarts at Universal Studios Japan. Text reads: "12 money saving tips. Start saving for your next vacation."

Image: Pink plum blossoms with blue sky taken in Japan. Text reads: "12 money saving tips. Start saving for your next vacation."


26 bình luận

03 thg 5, 2023

This is so helpful! After implementing I can’t wait to splurge on my next trip!


02 thg 5, 2023

I love the cheap eats idea! I will definitely have to try that. Thanks for the tip!


23 thg 4, 2023

Off brand buying is what I also have started doing off late. Very often, there is no difference in the taste and texture.

23 thg 4, 2023
Phản hồi lại

I'm glad you agree - it's a great little trick isn't it?


22 thg 4, 2023

Great tips. I plan to use a few.


22 thg 4, 2023

You can also save a lot of money by going out to happy hour and ordering their cocktails and appetizers at half price over the dinner menu! Terri

23 thg 4, 2023
Phản hồi lại

Great advice! Thank you for sharing 😊


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