Cheap Travel - Food

Cheap Travel - Food
When you travel on a budget you need to set rules and goals. When you plan your travel itinerary you look for budget hotels, cheap air line tickets, European Rail Passes, etc. But one thing you cannot know, unless you contract full board with your stay, is the price of food in each destination. And underestimated food costs greatly increase the cost of a cheap travel plan.

Eating out in Europe can be very pricey. But here are some tips and tricks to take into consideration while travelling through Europe.

1. Before you start traveling, do some research. It's a pitty to go to Valencia and not try la horchata or Agua de Valencia, two of the most valencian drinks. If you find out about them too late is not likely you will go back just to taste them but you will be left with a bitter taste because of the missed opportunity.

2. Don’t buy food at the airport. Ludicrously expensive and often poorly made, airport food can cost you precious calories and cash. Skip the plane chow, too. Airlines need money for gas, and they’re taking it out of your meal budget. Why pay $8 for a sandwich you might not even like?

3. Many European hotels have all you can eat buffet breakfast. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day so eating in comfortable limits can save you some money later in the morning. If the breakfast is not included in the hotel package, just go find a local coffee shop or bakery. Now here is where you are going to sample some of the local specialties and they are always cheaper than hotel breakfasts. It's a win, win situation for you and your pocket.

4. When in Rome do as the Romans do. This applies very well when you try to travel cheap. Just adjust your eating habits to you destination habits. It's as much a part of your visit as the highly rated museum or scenic outlook.

5. A picnic lunch purchased at a deli, market or take away is a great idea too. Bread, local cheese and fresh fruit make a filling lunch for a fraction of the restaurant costs. You don't pay for the table in the restaurant and you can choose the view. Just imagine having lunch in Champ de Mars looking at Eiffel Tower. Priceless!

6. Lunch menu prices are often lower than dinner ones. You can always alternate. Rules are meant to be broken. Just not too often if you still want to travel cheap.

7. Guidebooks direct you to certain local restaurants but in time these places become more and more expensive as the owners know that no matter what they do, the restaurant will still be full at dinner time. It's also good to make your own discoveries. As you walk through the city, some restaurants will definitely call your attention. You can come back later on and try their specialties.

8. Cheap travel is not about cheap experiences. A typical restaurant a few streets away from the center can be a few times cheaper that an over rated restaurant in the main city square. It's not always about the view.

9. And, for goodness sake, don’t get carried away in lovely Irish pubs and spend your food budget on Guinness. Yes, you might get some free peanuts, but that’s not going to help you tomorrow when the only thing that will cure a hangover is a trip to the buffet. I never understood the people that can only have fun when drunk.

10. From my experience the cheapest way to travel is by buying food from the supermarket. This doesn't mean that you don't get to taste the local food or you don't go to a fancy restaurant once in a while. It just means that you can save some money and invest them in other interests.
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