7 Costly Mistakes Every Rookie traveller Makes At Least Once

Tired travellers on a train, exhausted

Photo: Flickr/justgrimes

“When preparing to travel, lay out all your clothes and all your money. Then take half the clothes and twice the money.” –– Susan HellerIt’s ridiculous.

You work hard, track expenses, monitor budgets and count the days until you’ve earned enough.

And when you do…You blow all your hard-earned money on a two-week vacation, making countless and costly mistakes along the way.

Unfortunately, those were probably mistakes that could have been easily be avoided. Fortunately, the buck does NOT stop here.

Below are seven costly mistakes travellers make and how you can avoid them…

This story was originally published by Mint.

travelling during peak season.

People choose to travel during peak seasons for ideal weather, holidays or school breaks.

However, if you travel during the shoulder season -- a couple weeks before or after peak season -- you can save big on flights and hotels without compromising on quality.

Being inflexible with travel dates.

Paying full price for hotels.

Some hotels such as Choice Hotels and Hotel Indigo offer up to 20 per cent off your hotel if you book an advance purchase rate, which means you pay for the hotel in advance, not at check in.

Bookings need to be made in advance and are non-cancellable, non-changeable and non-refundable.

You can score great hotel deals at Hotwire.com which helps hotels book their unsold rooms. The only catch is you won't know the exact hotel until a couple days before your trip.

An alternative is to name your own hotel price at Priceline.com.

Forgetting about ground transportation.

Not negotiating.

Being unfamiliar with money internationally.

If you're travelling to a country that uses a foreign currency, you need to be prepared.

Avoid changing large amounts of money at airports or hotels. They charge high transaction rates because of their convenient location. Instead, change money at a local bank to get a better rate.

Use an international credit card for the majority of your purchases as credit card companies can secure better rates than individuals.

Avoid using travellers Cheques. Most banks charge a fee to issue and process travellers checks so you'll be paying for the checks upfront and to cash in the foreign country.

Use ATM cards and kiosks that don't charge an international fee or surcharge fee.

Call the credit card and ATM card companies to verify they do not charge international fees. While you're at it, inform them of your travel plans to avoid having the cards put on hold.

Travel tip: email yourself your credit and ATM card account numbers and emergency telephone numbers in case your card is put on hold, lost or stolen. If you use travellers Cheques, email yourself those numbers as well.

Taking paid group tours.

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