This is a special edition of frugal things I have done this week because……Hip hip Hooray! We are having a sunny holiday.
I know that a sunny holiday might not seem much to some of you, especially since many parts of the world are now having a heat wave, but to us, it is a Godsend! Man, I thought that Winter would never end! I was so cold for so long! I don’t know about you but I really do much prefer the sunshine to the colder weather. So now we are super excited to be in sunny Jamaica!
Three whole weeks of bliss. I might be a tiny bit partial but I think this is the best place in the world to be! Some of the most beautiful sceneries I have seen so far have come from Jamaica. Just take a look at some of these and I am sure you will agree.
I think you will be pleased to know that we still carry on with our frugal agenda. Yup! Being on holiday does not stop this agenda. Don’t get us wrong, being frugal does not mean you can’t go on holiday. What it does mean is that you save up and pay towards it rather than borrowing money to pay. You also try whatever else will work (legally) to make the stay not too expensive.
Whenever we go on holiday outside of Europe we tend to stay for at least 3 weeks, so it has to be during the Summer holidays. It’s not cheap, in fact, it can be quite expensive but if you continue reading you will see how we manage to make it cheaper than it would normally be.
Go self-catering for part of the holiday.
Like I have said, for holidays outside of Europe, we make it an extended stay so that we can soak up as much as possible of what is on offer. We don’t want to head out those many miles away and by the time we land, it is almost time to return. On this trip, we are spending a little over three weeks. It is quite expensive to spend 3 weeks in all-inclusive accommodation, so we have reduced the cost by having part of the stay self-catered.
That has reduced the cost significantly. Towards the end of the stay, we book into an all-inclusive and make use of all the amenities available. Self-catering gives us a chance to cook what we want when we want it and it also gives us a chance to go out into the community and meet and mingle with the locals.
Carry Own food
There are many advantages to taking your own foods on holidays. For one, it is cheaper. If you have children who are really picky eaters, then it helps to have what they will eat normally. That way you know they won’t starve whilst on holiday. We have brought a lot of our own food from home that we know everyone will love. This includes staples like rice, pasta and flour, savory snacks, chocolate and drink mixes. Take a look.
Don’t Use Air Condition all the time
Frugal means frugal wherever you go, and although we are not at home, we carry out the frugal agenda. It might not save us any money to use the air condition as little as possible but it does save someone and in the end, it saves our environment. We are lucky (blessed really) to be living in the penthouse suite for a part of our stay.
It is really hot in Jamaica and so the tendency would be to lock indoors and turn on the air condition, but we don’t. We open the windows and glass door and make use of the refreshing breeze that comes wafting across daily. At night time (only when we are ready to retire to bed) we put the air condition on and sleep in air-conditioned comfort.
Walk instead of paying for public transport
When planning your trip, it helps to figure out what local spots you would like to visit. Find out the cost of transport and weigh up the possibility of walking to some of the destinations rather than paying the cost of public transport. It has worked out for us. You get to have a jolly good time meeting the locals, learning the lingua and saving your money. Another advantage lies in the fact that many of us overeat and get little or no exercise. Walking to some destinations instead of paying for transport, which can sometimes increase when the locals figure you are not one of them, is more beneficial in terms of the cost and is also more beneficial healthwise.
Hang out with the locals
You must be mega careful with this one. Note well. Up to a few years ago, we were locals ourselves and we are also good judges of character. There are those who would take advantage of others (moneywise) and so you need to be with a local who speaks the language, knows the prices of items and who is willing to barter for you. For some traders, once they hear a foreign accent, everything has gone sky high in price.
Needless to say, we have made a few new local friends and get useful tips for where to shop, places to eat out, or places to visit.
Hand wash smaller items so you use the washing machine less
In our self-catering facility, we are privileged to have facilities to wash and dry our clothes. It would take a number of loads to wash a week’s supply of dirty clothes for all of us. That would cost a lot in terms of electricity and water and so we do our own small items of laundry by hand and use the washing machine for larger items. I can hear some people snickering and thinking: ‘who washes their own clothes on holiday?’ Well, we do. And so we have. We have pledged to be eco-warriors and we are committed to doing our bit to save our world.
So yes we are having a great time on this vacation. We are almost at the end of the first week and it is going great! Be sure to check out what frugal things we get up to next time around.
Are you a frugal living warrior? Do share some of what you do when on holiday to save money.