Long distance relationships are often much more expensive than close proximity relationships. The main reason for this is the cost to visit your partner.
Whether you live a few cities away, or whole continents, making regular trips requires a lot of saving. So it is important that when you are able to be together at last, that you make the most of your money.
That is why we have put together a short guide to some of the best ways to save money when visiting your partner, and make your budget go even further.
There are a lot of flight comparison websites that claim to save you money on your travel costs. However, the one that stands out to us is Google Flights.
Powered by the Google search engine, this tool will trawl through hundreds of airlines and providers to find you the best prices for any given dates. A couple of other features make this tool a standout too, including; the graph search which shows a visual representation of the cheapest dates, the +/- modifier which allows you to search for the cheapest flights with a range of time for your trip’s duration (e.g. 10-12 days), and the best deals.
The best deals use an algorithm to sort through and show the most attractive offers. These may not be the cheapest flights, but a combination of the cost, journey length, number of stopovers and more.
After flights, the next largest expense for many couples is accommodation. In a lot of situations, it is possible to stay with your partner, where they live. However, we also realise that there are situations in which this is not the case.
This could be due to a lack of room in the house, a less than desirable situation at home, or simply because you want to take a holiday together. In these cases, we would recommend against shelling out for hotels, and instead consider short term letting service Airbnb.
We prefer Airbnb for a number of reasons. The first is that most hotel rooms include very little cooking equipment, meaning you are forced to eat out nearly every day. With an Airbnb let, you have access to a full kitchen! Also, an Airbnb let can feel a lot more homely than a hotel, not to mention the significant cost difference.
3. Planning Daytrips
It can be very easy when visiting your partner, to leave planning until when you arrive. However, if you are travelling on a budget, it is usually best to plan your daytrips and activities before you arrive. If they involve travel, most tickets are cheaper when purchased in advance.
Similarly, any tourist attractions, or local landmarks that you plan to visit will offer a discount when booking online (and in advance). This is something that may not make a significant difference in isolation, but if you are planning to do a lot during your trip, it can add up quickly.
4. Cook at Home
Another area where long distance couples spend a lot of money during trips is on food. This is a significant issue when staying in hotels in particular, but also can be while staying at home (or an Airbnb sublet). So, instead of eating out for every meal, try to cook some of your meals at home too. You can make use of the ingredients you already have, or buy them in for a particular meal.
Either way, when feeding two, it usually works out cheaper than a restaurant. And, of course, it includes the added benefit of planning meals, and cooking together – giving you both an insight into what your future life may be together, when you are able to close the distance for good.
5. Travel Prepared
This one may sound simple, and obvious. But it is surprising how often we leave to visit our partner, having left something important at home. From clothes for the right weather, to toiletries, towels, electronic devices, and more.
To save yourself buying replacements when you arrive, try to make sure you pack everything that you will need for the duration of your trip. The easiest way to do this is to make a list before you leave, check it with your partner (to make sure there isn’t anything you have missed) and try to stick to it as much as possible.
6. Budget Yourself
While most of us do not enjoy budgeting ourselves, it can be really helpful to make sure you stay on track when visiting your LDR partner. There are a couple of ways to do this, the simplest being simply setting a budget for the trip as a whole. A slightly more detailed method would be to break your budget down into days, and work out how much you can spend per day to stay on budget.
If you have planned your trip in advance, then you may also want to consider weighting your days – as some days you will spend more than others. And remember, it is okay to sometimes be under budget, in the same way that sometimes it is okay to be over budget.
This is by no means a comprehensive guide to the ways in which you can save money while visiting your partner. However, it does lay the foundation for some savings. By following some of the steps we list here, you should be able to make your money go further and, hopefully, be able to stretch out the time you spend with your partner for a little longer.
Let us know what ways you save money on your trips to visit your LDR partner in the comments below.