Travel expert shares ‘biggest tip’ to ‘save thousands’ on hotels and restaurants

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From hotels to food and even tourist attractions, Express.co.uk spoke to Travel Writer, Shebs Alom aka Shebs The Wanderer, who shared his tips and travel advice on how to save money when travelling abroad.

Shebs owes his love of travel to having ”saved thousands” since he was bitten by the travel bug 15 years ago.

First things first, before jetting off abroad you may need a visa. Shebs recommends to “always do your research”. 

Depending on where you’re flying to, purchasing a visa online may be cheaper, however for some destinations the airport may offer a more reasonable price.

Apps usually give “better deals” and this is especially true when you use them consistently.

Booking.com has been his go-to for the past 10 years.

Shebs’ loyalty to the app has quite literally paid off as he automatically receives 15 percent off every time he books a hotel.

If you’re lucky, the hotel will throw in an upgrade and a perk such as free breakfast which can be beneficial as breakfast can sometimes add £10 extra to your bill each day.

A clever trick is to book just one or two days on the app then book more days once you arrive at the hotel.

In Shebs’ experience, when the accommodation has been cheaper on a third-party website compared to the hotels website it has become an opportunity to “negotiate a deal” with the hotel.

He boasted saving £300 on his villa during his recent trip to Santorini in Greece.

Hoppers, Agoda and even Hostelworld are apps that also “give fantastic deals”.

Shebs said: “A lot of people think that Hostelworld only features hostels but there are hotels on there too.”

He used the app for a trip to Manhattan in New York City, and found a hotel that was only 20 dollars a night.

When it comes to food – “If you see locals eating in a restaurant it’s always better”. 

Ask the concierge or locals their favourite restaurant. They will recommend restaurants off the beaten track that will be cheaper.

More importantly, food at local spots will always be more authentic and often more delicious.

Shebs advised buying water and snacks in supermarkets to avoid “extortionate prices” at tourist attractions.

The days of bureau de change are long gone. Shebs disclosed: “My biggest tip is that I don’t ever carry cash with me”. It’s best to use a bank card but make sure to choose local currency in order to avoid exchange rates and save those bucks.

Shebs suggested making the most out of a Hop-On Hop-Off ticket. After all the sights have been seen, the ticket usually lasts for the entire day therefore it can double up as the mode of transport. 

Speaking of tourist attractions, always speak to a local or someone who has previously visited the destination. They will guide you on the best tours to take so that no money is wasted.

Last but not least, don’t be shy to haggle. Especially when shopping.

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