Updated May 10th, 2016
If you haven’t heard, I’m currently on a plane headed for Irvine, California (with a short stop in Newark) for this year’s Women In Travel Summit! Organized by Wanderful, an incredible international community of travelling women, WITS is the only travel blogging conference that’s organized by women, for women. Would I have believed you if you told me two months ago that I’d be heading to Southern California this year to attend? I would have thought you were crazy! When this opportunity jumped in front of my face, I was able to accept it with open arms thanks to these easy guidelines. By adding some of these to your current saving habits, your travel fund will grow quicker without spending a dime!
No 1 – Enter Contests
May seem like a no brainer, but you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take! Enter into as many contests as you can and you’re bound to win one. This is how I ended up heading to WITS16 as I won a contest one of the planning committee members was running. Originally I wasn’t the first pick but fortunately for me the original winner wasn’t able to go, so you can imagine how excited I was to get this message! Keep reading to find out how I managed to fund the rest of my trip.
No 2 – Loyalty & Points Programs
I’m sure you’ve heard of points programs like AirMiles or WestJet Rewards, as well as loyalty programs like Wyndham or Hotels.com Rewards. These points programs don’t cost you a penny as you collected them on purchases you’re already paying for like gas and groceries. I’ve collected AirMiles for over 5 years now (with help from my family) and it’s thanks to persistently collecting these AirMiles in a variety of stores across Canada that I’m able to fly to California! All I had to pay was the taxes and fees, which in total came to less than $200CDN. Not too shabby for a flight across the continent! In regards to accommodation, I often use Hotels.com because after you book 10 nights through their site, you get a night free that’s worth the average of the 10 you booked! Free money towards another hotel stay that I was going to book anyway? I’m in!
No 3 – Money Back Credit Card
These bad boys are great not just for travel, but for ANYTHING! I was recently approved for Tangerine’s Money-Back Credit Card Preview and it’s the best example out there for making FREE money. On any purchase you make, you earn 1% back on every dollar you spend using it. EVERY DOLLAR! It gets even better as if you open a savings account with them (no fees, great interest rate) and agree to put the money you earn each month into it, you can select three categories and earn DOUBLE that – 2% on certain types of purchases! For example, I earn 2% on groceries, gas, and eating out at restaurants, like you can see below in a previous statement of mine. The best part? You can change your categories! Say you know you’ll be travelling a lot in the next few months, then you can change your categories to include accommodation purchases and earn even more! The only catch is that you have to keep the categories for 3 months after changing them, so just do the math ahead of time to see what categories would benefit you the most! I’ve already made over $100 just for spending money! Give me another 3 months and I’ll have covered the taxes and fees for my flight, meaning I flew entirely for free!
No 4 – Referral Programs
Tangerine is also great because when you open a bank account with them, you can earn money for referring your friends. How cool is that?! Any time a friend signs up with Tangerine using your referral code, you AND your friend will each earn $25! So if you sign up using my code 41796480S1 you’ll get $25 for free OR maybe even $50 if they have a promo happening! The BEST part? The more people you refer, the more money you’ll make! Once you sign up, you can refer your friends and keep the money coming in! Another website that’s great for referrals is Airbnb. Haven’t used it? Sign up using my referral link and you’ll get $20+ off your first booking, and I’ll make a few bucks too! So why not make some money for just signing up FOR FREE?
No 5 – Ebates.ca
At the beginning of April I started using Ebates.ca, a site where you can earn money back while shopping online. I wasn’t 100% sure about it at first but I received my first cheque in the mail in May! Paid quarterly, you earn a percentage of your money back by shopping online on sites like Amazon, The Body Shop, eBay, and more! There are over 650 stores to choose from, so why not make money on items you’re planning to purchase anyway? You’ll get a free $10 for signing up and if you’re like me and pair it with a money-back credit card, you’ll be making double the cash! How sweet is that?!
These processes may take a while and they take some dedication, but they’re a fabulous way to bank some cash. So when that spur of the moment opportunity arises, you’ll be able to jump at the chance without worry! Will any of these opportunities help you bank some money for your next trip? What do you do to save money for your future adventures? If my tips help you grow your travel fund, please let me know! I’d love to show others how my methods do work!