My Travelling Tips - $100 Budget
Everyone have their own way on how to arrange their own budget when it comes to travelling. One thing you have to agree on is that travelling is an expensive hobby. I have my own way of decreasing the impact of financial expenses that you might felt when you have to spend on travelling.
For me, it is back to the $100 rule.
Every month, once i get my paycheck, i will set aside some money and change it into the denomination of $100. For instance, last year when i planned for my travel to Europe, i started saving up since early of the financial year (i travelled on December, so i started saving up since January). Since the country that i had in mind use EUR and GBP, i went to the money changer and exchange my money into EUR50 and GBP50 respectively since the early month of January.
Some might said that i might lose some due to the currency exchange. But one thing about currency exchange is that it is always fluctuating. One day it might go up and another day it might went down. My simple reasoning is that, i do not want to feel burdened by exchanging my money in one shot for instance exchanging EUR1,000 which might cost me RM4,210 based on the current currency exchange. Therefore, i split it into 12 consecutive months (11 actually since when i flown to Europe that time i still have not gotten my December paycheck).
It is just a trick of mind. When you exchange your money constantly every month, it taken away the sting a bit. For instance, EUR50 will cost about RM210 and GBP50 will cost about RM270. Combined together it was less than RM500 per month. It felt as if i was paying for another car or unseen expenses every month. Subconsciously you will start adjusting your monthly expenditure into paycheck minus RM500. The impact however will be entirely different if you save it to another account coz the possibility that you might use it is high. However, once you converted the money, it felt as if that RM500 is non-existent as it has been converted into another currency.
By the end of the year, you will roughly have about EUR550 and GBP550 cash in your hands.
Some might argue that you will lose it to the poor or good currency exchange. Like i mentioned before, you cannot predict the financial market. Currency is fluctuating every day and for me the rate is not the main issue coz with the fluctuating trend of the currency exchange, you might end up spending less while converting your money or perhaps more. The main point is, to have the money ready once you ready to travel. The concept is like buying something, you can choose to either pay it in lumpsum or split it into installment. You will totally feel the financial impact when you pay it one whole sum as compared to paying it by installment plan.
This does not include paying for the flight tickets yet. For me, by saving up my money this way, once i am ready to travel, my main focus will be paying for the flight tickets. Just imagine, perhaps a flight ticket to Europe cost around RM2,500. If i have not converted the money since early of the year, you have to add in another RM5,000 to be converted into cash. One time expenditure of RM7,500 as opposed to solely focus on the flight tickets.
As for this year, i did not have any particular focus but i do dream of going to US. So i started converting my money into USD100 each month. Up until now, i have USD800 in my hands. But the US dream trip might not materialise this year. I might go somewhere else this year end. However, given the fact that USD is the most exchangeable currency in the world, i could very much adjust it to the destination i have in mind. You can go to any parts of the world and the money changer will accept USD. So, it might not be necessarily for US but also for other countries.
My method might not necessarily suits everyone but i just want to share it for the sake of sharing. This is the second part of my travelling tips. More to come insya Allah.