Over the years, while Singapore has been a hot spot of tourism for foreigners, the number of Singaporeans spending holidays overseas is constantly growing and is even bound to rank as the fourth outbound city market until 2020.
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It seems everyone will grab every opportunity to spend the long weekend in another country and escape the grueling work life. So where have your neighbors and relatives been going? According to GfK’s Travelscan data, most Singaporeans headed to China, Thailand and Hong Kong, with China getting 20% of the outbound Singaporean flight with intent for leisure. As for Thailand which gets the 16% of the outbound flights, Bangkok, Phuket and Chiang Mai are its most visited cities. However, though China is still at the highest rank, its flight bookings had decreased by 6% as many are now eyeing Japan due to the increasing strength of Singaporean Dollar. This means you can buy more stuff in Japan now, and you can enjoy more of the cherry blossoms.
Budget Travelling Mistakes
- Avoiding other travellers
Do not avoid other backpackers, you are missing out the fun of backpacking and the great chance to save up on your ride to your next destination. You will be ecstatic to know their willingness to offer you a shared ride to your next destination if you are luckily going to the same direction. They may also give you tips on where you can get cheapest yet good place to sleep and eat. Instead of spending too much time walking around and figuring transportation and accommodation on your own, fellow backpackers can teach you the route of intercity buses or perhaps how to haggle fare with tuk tuks and songthaews.
- Taking hostel security lightly
You can never be too sure about your safety when you sleep if you are stingy enough to sleep in a shared accommodation. Always keep your valuables near you. You can even purchase a bicycle chain to lock your bag in the bedpost. It may sound silly but it might just save you from a lot of worries and unnecessary expenses if you lose your stuff.
- Paying for not pre-booked luggage
Pre-booked luggage of 15kg can cost S$20, failure to pre-book may cause you S$50 and more. So if you went to Thailand with just a backpack and now you have a couple of large colorful bags beside your bedpost, remember to book your luggage. If you already booked your flight, then do not hesitate to call your airline to adjust your luggage booking.
- Unorganized backpack
There are times when you have stuff in your home, yet did not mind to pack it up, so when you need it in your trip you end up buying the same item at the most ridiculous price.
Things you have to keep in your bag:
While we have 7-11 in almost every street to grab a bottle of iced cold water to quench your dried throat, it might not be the same in other countries. If you are not sure about the availability of convenience stores in your travel destination, it is better to have a water bottle you can refill in water dispensers available in your accommodation than buy expensive bottled water while going on your adventure.
We all know snacks are like gold in hot tourist spots, it is very expensive and it might not be too mouthwatering for your palate, yet you have no choice but to chomp it down because you are too hungry walking under the scorching heat.
Always carry a small bag of biscuits or crackers around, this can replenish your energy for a while until you reach a restaurant more soothing to your taste and budget.
Going to tropical countries where it is too humid? Expect swarms of mosquitoes to ruin your night escapades and sleep. These mosquitoes are also potential carriers of dengue and malarias virus, to protect yourself you must carry your insect repellant. Some local repellants and bug sprays don’t work well, it is better to have your trusted insect repellant than regret with sleepless nights during your holiday.
We all know the growing attachment Singaporeans have with Wi-Fi, yet this is not only for games such as Pokemon Go. Smartphones are now a necessity to navigate places at ease and to contact your family to assure them of your safety. You can also download offline maps in case you are not sure of your constant connection with the web.
Power bank and charger
Of course, you smartphone will be useless without power. Always be sure to have your power bank and charger with you every time you go out. Also have an outlet adapter if possible. Different countries have various kinds of electricity outlets. The last thing you want is an incompatible charger with the accommodation’s outlet and your smartphone battery is already drained for hours.
Quick dry towel
Since you are a budget traveler, you tend to sleep in hostels, cheap hotels and guesthouses which charge fees for dry towels. To save up, a quick dry towel will be handy. It is usually light weight and can be folded into smaller size to save up on space. It also takes only a couple of hours to dry unlike the regular towels.
If you are considering skipping travel insurance in your must have list, then you are endangering your safety and finances. While there is a chance that you will not even use the insurance, there is also a chance that you will be thankful you have purchased one. Most travel insurance cover medical bills abroad, others even cover lost luggage, delayed flights and missed connection.
- Using credit cards
Overall spending might increase by 2.5% to 3% if you keep on swiping your credit card overseas, so make sure to get your SD converted into Baht, Yen, or any currency used in your travel destination.
- Buying travel insurance offered by airlines
There are a lot of travel insurance shoved on your face if you look online, however you have to make sure that you get the best one you can have. Take time to shop around and remember that there could be better travel insurance than the ones offered by your airline.
Pre-existing medical conditions
Check if the travel insurance cover pre-existing medical conditions. In case you collapse while chomping down on steak while enjoying the Bahamas sunset due to a pre-existing heart problem, most airline travel insurance will not cover you.
It seems that most of the travel insurance will entice you by promising money claims if you experience disrupted flights due to unforeseen circumstances, however be sure to read their fine prints and you will see that some insurance have wider range of coverage than others. You usually get a payout with cancelled, postponed, or delayed flights, but only a handful of insurance will pay your extra plane ticket or accommodation if your flight is cancelled while you are overseas. This covers illness, natural disasters and strike or riot.
Long flight travels need connecting flights and stories of missed connecting flights are not new to us. It is like a nightmare nobody wants to experience in real life. If you are in a budget flight it is your responsibility to book your two separate flights at the most convenient timing. Only few travel insurance will payout your missed connecting flight.
Overbooked flights and public transport
Overbooking results from oversold flights, because airlines expect some no-show passengers, however there are times when passengers get bumped. This means there are limited seats for too many passengers. If you get bumped then you might have to stay at the airport for a while or find an accommodation. Some airline travel insurance will only give you a $100 voucher as compensation. Choose a travel insurance which will cover not only your overbooked flight ticket, but also your accommodation and other overbooked transport such as trains and buses.
Kidnap and hostage
Singaporeans know that there is a slim chance of getting kidnapped and hostage, but won’t it be a bit relieving to know you are compensated by your travel insurance?
Some of us do stupid things when we get away from our own country and experience a whole different environment. Others get too drunk and get into a bar fight, some run over pets or even locals due to irresponsible driving. Only a handful of travel insurance will cover personal liabilities and will cover your legal fees.
In need of extra cash for your overseas holiday with your loved ones? Do not let this be the reason to miss out the once in a lifetime chance. You can get a personal loan from Cash Mart in just 30 minutes. Drop by Cash Mart office today to start your smooth loan transaction.
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