Thursday, September 7, 2023

5 Tips For Exploring South America On A Budget'

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Ready for an epic backpacking adventure? Imagine this: lush landscapes, vibrant cultures, and stories waiting to unfold - that’s South America for you. The best part? You don't need a huge bank account to make it happen. You can achieve this dream on a budget. That’s why around 686,000 UK travellers flocked to the region in 2019 alone. Below are six tips to help you explore this stunning continent without burning your savings. 

  1. Avoid gear rental 

A great way to make smart choices with your money is to pack the essentials instead of blowing your cash on rented gear like tents, sleeping bags, or cooking stuff. Sure, it might seem like a chunk of change upfront, but you can trust that it’s a wise move in the long run, especially if you plan to hop around different spots. Here is another thing: backpacking is about your personal touch. Renting gear might not be your style or match your unique personality. So, rock what makes you feel awesome, whether it’s comfy sneakers or a killer hat. Don't hold back - bring along as much as your airline allows and that you can comfortably haul around so you don’t have to spend too much on rentals. After all, your journey should an extension of you!

  1. Stick to public transport

South America has an impressive public transport web waiting to whisk you away. Forget about pricey private transport fares - buses, trains, and shared taxis are the way to go. Although it might take a smidge longer to hit your destination, the money you’ll save and the cool people you’ll meet make everything worthwhile. Here’s something to remember: navigating the roads in South America is a whole different ballgame compared to what you’re used to in the UK. Therefore, keep an open mind and go beyond expecting smooth, well-paved roads connecting every dot on your route. It’s worth noting that the folks running local tourism scenes are practically one with the land, the routes, and all the unpredictable conditions. They’ll steer you clear of the swamplands and make sure you get from A to B without any unnecessary hassle. 

  1. Safety first, always

You’re the boss of your adventure, so making safety a priority is vital. Before you even land, do a little homework on the safety of each spot. Then, take the necessary precautions - like choosing places to stay with good vibes and solid reviews. And when the sun goes down, sticking to well-lit areas and locking up your stuff is best. Arm yourself with the know-how: stick to secure accommodations, steer clear of dodgy areas at night, and keep your belongings locked down. Hostels with positive reviews and a friendly vibe are your best bets and don't hesitate to pick fellow travellers’ brains for safety tips. Additionally, it’s good to know when and where to use public WiFi, especially if you want to keep your devices secure. You can never tell who’s watching your every move online. Therefore, it’s also important to learn how to find WiFi SSID to enjoy the best security while travelling.

  1. Eat local food but with caution

Picture this: you’re savouring local flavours, sampling street eats, and diving into markets. Yum, right? But let’s be real; nobody wants stomach troubles while exploring. Play it smart - pick vendors with a line of locals who cook your grub fresh and hot. That way, you’re in for a culinary adventure minus unwanted surprises. 

  1. Balance your nightlife and skip overpriced tours

South America knows how to party - that’s for sure. But here’s the deal: while you might be tempted to dance the night away, partying too hard can eat into your budget and drain your energy. It’s all about choosing a few epic nights out and balancing them with chilled days, soaking in the local culture. Also, guided tours can be exciting, no doubt about it. But they can also cost a pretty penny. Here’s a tip: consider riding solo. Research cool places to check out, hunt down free or low-cost activities, and get chatty with other travellers to pick up tips and experiences. It’s like creating your own adventure recipe with all your favourite ingredients. 

Ready for an unforgettable adventure that’ll be the envy of all your friends back home? South America’s calling, and guess what? You don't need a fortune to answer. By getting crafty with your resources, rolling with public transport, putting safety first, finding your party pace, and going beyond your comfort zone with your explorations, you’re in for a South American escape that’s etched in your memory forever. 

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