You know the feeling when you arrive in a foreign country as a tourist and you start to overspend massively on aspects of your trip such as travel because you don't know any different? Yes, we’ve all been there. But even within the UK, some of us are making mistakes and spending more when we could easily be saving money on transport when visiting our favourite UK spots.
As someone who has made some of these mistakes, I wanted to share what I’ve learnt in the hope that I can save you all some pennies on your next trip. I’ve also included a £10 MegabusGold voucher just in case you feel inspired to take a coach trip this Summer! So, here are some key travel mistakes you could be making and how to overcome them.
1. Catching trains and coaches last minute
Yes, life is very unpredictable especially when we're travelling and it’s important to stay flexible and not panic if you miss a train or bus. However, for long distances especially, it is definitely worth booking in advance online. Most stations now also have points where you can pick up tickets from selected locations so you can order your tickets in advance and pick them up before you travel hassle free. If you are spending a few days in a certain area, places like London have specific travel cards such as Oyster cards which can save you spending a larger amount on multiple smaller trips.
2. Choosing the wrong form of transport
A lot of people who visit the UK assume the train is the best mode of transport. While it might be the quickest, it definitely isn’t always the cheapest. Coach services like Megabus and National Express are cheaper and contrary to popular belief, they offer quality and comfort. They also offer overnight travel which is unavailable on restricted train times, and even if you book slightly later, you always get a better deal on a coach. You also get more leg room and storage space, bonus!
3. Not travelling light
As a regular commuter, I watch painfully as tourists struggle with suitcases and bags almost the size of them while frustrated businessmen sigh as they shuffle behind them on a daily basis. Travelling light in the UK is key if you want to see as much as possible and save time and money carrying hefty luggage around. In many stations, you also have to pay a costly fee to store your luggage so I would suggest a backpack or a carry-on suitcase or weekend bag with wheels for convenience.
4.Not utilising free apps or travel tools
There are hundreds of apps now available to help make your travel much less stressful. Journey Pro is my personal favourite. It’s a free app which as everything you need to plan a trip anywhere in the country. It is particularly useful for planning a London Underground journey, providing up-to-the-second journey options and updates. The app also provides a journey planning map across the country from postcode to postcode. Once you have it, you’ll wonder why you ever travelled without it! National Rail and Wi-fi Finder are also my favourite apps to use when travelling around the UK.
5. Travelling during peak times of the day
Speaking of frustrated commuters, particularly in places like London, to avoid utter pain, if you can help it try not to plan your arrival during 7am-9am and 5-7pm to stay out of the rush. The trains will be jam packed, the stations will be hectic and if you have no idea where you’re going, it’s better to save yourself the stress and travel during a time where you have time to stop and ask questions. You will also get rewarded with cheaper options if you choose to travel outside of peak times. So if you can, why wouldn’t you?
Get £10 off your next journey with MegabusGold
If you’d like to travel in style this spring, why not choose to travel with MegabusGold and save £10? Simply enter your name and email address at the link below, then click on ‘send me a voucher code’ – and MegabusGold will send it straight to your inbox.
By signing up you’re also agreeing to receive future news and offers from them. Your £10 voucher code will be valid for any overnight journey with MegabusGold between London and Scotland up to 31st July if booked by 31st May*.
So hopefully my tips have inspired you to take a budget UK trip soon! Let me know where you go and if you have any savvy saving transport tips of your own.