Savings Under the Sun: How to Spend Less on a Spanish Holiday

If you’re traveling to Spain but you’d like to be sensible with money, there are ways you can visit the country without breaking the bank. You have all kinds of options open to you to keep the costs down and your wallet full while still having an excellent time.

Naturally, the country has its expensive areas, particularly in popular places with heavy tourist footfall and the main city thoroughfares. With this in mind (and for a more authentic experience) you should step off the beaten track. There are lots of spots on the coast and inland that offer a quieter location, allowing your Spain holiday to become significantly cheaper. Not only that you’ll have new places explore — and more money to do it with.


Getting those holidays booked

Think about when you’re booking: generally, the further in advance you book the less money you’ll spend. If time isn’t on your side, however, look into last-minute deals. They can sometimes prove just as rewarding. Also, keep your eye on budget airline sales.

Be flexible with your dates if you can, and fiddle around: sometimes adjusting one flight by one or two days can save you hundreds.

Finally, avoid travelling during school holidays if you can help it.

Finding somewhere to rest your head

Holiday accommodation in Spain isn’t as expensive as it can be in other western European destinations, especially if you know where to look.

Location: If you’re flying into a popular resort or airport town, consider getting public transport to the next town a few miles away. There might be cheaper accommodation there and it might be quieter too.

Hostels: The cheapest options are often dorm beds in hostels, with private hotel rooms also offering a cheap and cheerful option. Often hostels have communal kitchens as well, so you can save money on meals by cooking.

Self-catering: If you’re looking for something more up-market and private, try self-catering or half-board. You’ll save money by not eating out every night (tasty as those tapas are!), but you can still browse the local supermarkets to ensure you’re sampling the local cuisine.

Locals: To really immerse yourself in the local culture and save money, couch surfing or spare room websites are the best option. They give you the chance to stay temporarily in a family home for a small contribution (sometimes they like to practice their English). Make sure it’s safe, and agree a rate in advance. You can make new friends while you travel and maybe at the same time pick up further money saving tips. The knowledge of locals can go a long way.


Filling your stomach for less

Think about eating out at lunchtime for better deals, since evening meals tend to be more expensive. If you’ve eaten a large lunch and fancy an evening snack instead of dinner, head to a local bar where you might find that you get a small plate of tapas — cheap, or even free — with your drink.

Many Spanish restaurants have a ‘menu of the day’ at lunchtime, offering several courses for one budget price. This is a chance to sample typical Spanish cuisine and keep more euros in your pocket.

Finally, enjoy Spain! You’ll find it easy to have a tremendous holiday without clearing out your savings. Makes it that little bit sweeter still!

Images by scotbot and Leshaines123, used under Creative Commons license.

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