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2024: The Year of Travel

January 03 2024

2024: The Year of Travel
2024: The Year of Travel

 

With the dawn of 2024 upon us, many people set resolutions aiming for personal growth, better health, or improved financial habits. But what about resolving to enrich our lives through travel? Traveling more isn't just about seeing new places; it's an investment in experiences that broaden our perspectives, challenge our comfort zones, and allow us to discover unique cultures and lifestyles different from our own. Read on as we break down our top 4 recommended strategies on how to make 2024 your most traveled year yet. 

 

  1. Financial Planning

To make travel a reality, it’s crucial to get your finances in order. Here are some things you can do to start saving today.:

  • Start a dedicated travel fund: Open a savings account specifically for travel. Even small, regular contributions will add up over time.
  • Cut unnecessary expenses: Review your spending habits and cut back on non-essentials. Redirect these savings to your travel fund.
  • Look for travel deals: Subscribe to newsletters and alerts from travel websites to stay informed about deals and discounts. Some places we've found great deals include The Dollar Flight Club and Going. 
  • Automate your savings: Set up an automatic transfer to your travel fund right after payday. Apps like 'Digit' or 'Qapital' can help by automatically saving small amounts.
  • Use budgeting apps: There are numerous personal budgeting apps available. Test drive a few and find the one you like. Tools like this can help you track your expenses and find areas to save.
  • Travel rewards programs: Sign up for travel rewards credit cards and loyalty programs with airlines and hotels. Websites like 'The Points Guy' offer great advice on maximizing these rewards.

 

  1. When to Book Your Trips?

Planning when to book your trips can significantly impact costs. Below are the Matador Team's favorite tips for saving on your next flights.:

  • Book early for peak seasons: Don't get lazy, if you're eyeing a popular destination, book several months in advance. Early bookings often come with better rates and more choices.
  • Last-minute deals: For more flexibility, test your luck with last-minute bookings. They can often yield great deals, especially for hotels and tours that need to fill up their last few spaces.
  • Off-peak travel: Consider traveling during the off-season. Not only is it cheaper, but you'll also experience destinations without the crowds. Shoulder Season for the win. 
  • Best time to book flights: Studies suggest that booking flights on Tuesdays and Wednesdays can offer the best deals. Tools like 'Google Flights' and 'Skyscanner' provide price trend insights and an objective view of the current rates.
  • Use fare alerts: Set up email or text alerts on sites like 'Kayak' or 'Hopper' to notify you of price drops for your chosen destinations.
  • Consider alternative accommodations: Instead of hotels, look into vacation rentals through 'Airbnb' or budget hostels. Websites like 'Hostelworld' are great for finding affordable options.

  

  1. Scheduling Your Life Around Travel

Balancing travel with work and personal responsibilities requires strategic planning. The earlier you can put it on your calendar, the more likely you are to actually pull it off.:

  • Utilize long weekends and public holidays: Plan short trips during these times to maximize your travel without using up much PTO. 
  • Flexible work arrangements: If possible, negotiate with your employer for flexible working hours or the ability to work remotely. Remote work has become far more acceptable in recent years. 
  • Combine business and leisure travel: If you travel for work, consider extending your stay for leisure. This way, you're already at the destination, and your employer picks up the tab on your travel costs.
  • Remote work-friendly destinations: If you can work remotely, explore destinations that are conducive to 'workations.' Check out our blog post “Countries that offer digital nomad visas” for insight on the best places to go while working remote.
  • Staycation adventures: Explore local or nearby destinations for shorter trips. This can satisfy your travel itch without needing extensive time off. Sometimes the biggest adventures are right in your backyard.

 

  1. Creating More Time for Travel

It's all about creating opportunities within your existing schedule. We all lead busy lives, so when we have some availability to travel... carpe diem. 

  • Prioritize travel: Make traveling a non-negotiable aspect of your life. This mindset shift can help you find ways to integrate regular travel into your routine.
  • Involve your family or friends: Make travel a group activity. It can be more fun and sometimes more economical when costs are shared. 
  • Join travel communities: Online communities and forums, such as 'Lonely Planet’s Thorn Tree' or 'tripadvisor', offer valuable advice and can help you find travel buddies.
  • Volunteer or educational trips: Consider combining travel with learning or volunteering. Websites like 'Workaway' or 'goabroad' provide opportunities for immersive experiences.

 

Making 2024 your year for travel doesn't require a radical lifestyle change. With smart financial planning, strategic booking, and a little creativity in scheduling, you can add more travel into your life without disrupting your work and personal responsibilities. Remember, travel is not just about the destinations you visit, but the journey of experiences along the way. Here's to traveling hard in the new year!

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