When you’re traveling, eating out at restaurants is just part of the deal. You’re naturally going to be eating out a lot more than you’ll have the opportunity to prepare your own meals. It’s more convenient and no one would argue that it’s enjoyable as well. Everyone loves having meals prepared for them, but most people don’t want to realize that a huge portion of their travel budgeting is going towards these meals eaten out at restaurants. But this doesn’t mean that you have to cut this luxury out of your travel plans. You can easily find the balance between enjoying some meals out, and saving your money for the things you really want to be doing, while still staying healthy all through it
1. Eat early
You might think that only old people eat at 5 pm, but you can actually save a bit of money if you go out to eat before the prime dinner hour. Many restaurants offer happy hour specials from 3-5 or from 4-6 during the week so you can get deals. You can also opt to go out for a drink and get some cheap appetizers during the happy hour time, then go out for a lighter meal later.
2. Skip the alcohol
Drinking can cut a huge hole in many people’s budgets. It can be very expensive to drink while you’re traveling, so to save your money for the things you really want to do on your trip, skip the extra booze at dinner. If you must, stick to one glass of wine. This way you’ll not only save money, but you’ll feel great the next day for your sightseeing.
3. Head out of the tourist center
If you always are eating in the center of town, you’re probably going to be eating at higher-priced restaurants. This is because many tourists eat at these restaurants so they are going to charge tourist prices. It’s okay to do this once in a while if you are really craving some food from home, but you might find your budget steadily dwindling. To combat this problem, head out of the center to the places where the locals are eating. You’ll know the food is great if it’s mostly locals eating there anyway! And you’ll be sure to find lower prices.
4. Grab some street eats
Not only is street food much cheaper than restaurants, but it’s often a great way to sample the local cuisine in a very authentic way. Grab a plastic table and chair and enjoy some Pad Thai and mango sticky rice in Thailand for $2- you won’t regret it! Southeast Asia is an amazing place to try incredible street meals for just a dollar or two and it’s some of the best food you’ll find there.