How to Save Money for Your Trips and Extreme Saving Tips

After 4 Countries and 8 local destinations in 8 months, one might think that I have a lot of money to burn. I’m glad I’m working in a BPO which is where I get most of my funds for traveling. But even online moneyso, when you know you’re going away almost every weekend to far-flung places and you have a lot of bills to pay, funds get depleted right away. I would like to share some of the things I did on how to save money for trips.

Times like these, I make sure that I budget my money in order to ensure that I still have enough funds for my travels. Some of my tips may be extreme, but they’re definitely doable.

Saving Money for Your Backpacking Funds

Tip: Food

Food is one of the necessities that we spend everyday. I stopped going to medium-priced restaurants because they’re too costly at around 80Php to 100Php per meal. In our pantry, I’d usually spend about 35Php for rice and viand. However, I was able to save more when I decided to bring my own lunch from home. Doing so prevented me from ever spending on this need everyday. Saving 35Php a day already amounts to 700Php a month (20 days in a work month).

Extreme Saving Tip: Sell Food!

There came a point wherein my companions wanted to eat the same meals that I brought. Hence, I decided to have meals cooked in batches to accommodate them. By the way, the meals that I prepared were purely vegetables – with no hint of meat at all. Doing this not only helped them save money (since my veggies were not expensive), I also assisted them with their diet issues.

chayote, carrots, cabbage – stir-fried

How much did I spend in total? –43Php a day. Yes, that’s a Negative 43 bucks on expenses which means that I earned a profit because of selling lunch outside the office. I earned roughly a minimum of 50Php a day and I spent 7Php as my jeepney fare to work since I needed to bring a bag of food.

Simple mathematics would say that if I saved 35Php on not eating pantry food and profiting 43Php for selling, it would be a total of 78Php per day. Multiply it by 20 workdays, that’s already 1560Php savings a month!

Tip: Transportationjeep

The flag-down rate for a taxicab is 40Php and cost is 3.50Php per succeeding kilometer. Saving by not taking taxis isn’t really that applicable to me since I don’t hire taxis on a regular basis. But you can choose to live near your office in order to minimize on costs. I take a jeep to commute to and from work. Hence I only spend around 14Php for the fare alone.

“Your lifestyle should not change just because you got promoted to a higher position.” – A very inspiring advice I got from a friend. Truly, she still takes jeepney rides despite how far she lives from work and is already managing a number people.

Extreme Tip: Walk to Your Office or Back!

Since I live near the office, it only takes me 13 minutes of brisk-walking. In line with promoting an active lifestyle, you can use this as an opportunity to fight off hours of sitting on a chair on your work shift. The 14Php savings can be utilized for snacks at work if the veggies are too much.

Tip: Clothes

Choose the type of clothes you buy. Pick classic items so you can wear them anytime. So long as it’s comfortable, you’ll definitely feel good wearing whatever your like. I’ve ample shirts for work because of purchasing them in flea markets. But for brand new clothes, instead of buying branded clothes, I choose to purchase items outside the country as it’s a lot cheaper. To date, I’ve never purchased a new shirt in 7 months.

tshirts for sale
Cheap quality shirts in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Extreme Tip: Sell Clothes!

Buy clothes outside the country and sell them to your friends. Aside from clothes, you can also buy other items that they might fancy. During my trip in Cambodia and Bangkok, I bought items for my companions which actually aided in offsetting my travel fare going to those countries.

Tip: Work on the Night Shift

If your company operates 24/7, you will be given a night differential allowance (mandated by the Labor Code) whenever you work in the graveyard shift. A percentage of your basic salary will definitely add up to your travel fund.

I chose to work in the graveyard shift since I found out that I could earn more than the profit that I made out of selling food outside the office.

Extreme Tip: Do Overtime!

earn onlineIf it’s available, you may do overtime at work or clock in during your days off. You can get a premium if you work beyond your required hours, especially when you work on holidays. Just make sure that you don’t tire yourself in the process. Take time to rest.

Tip: Freelance Jobs – Work at Home

Due to increasing cost of living expenses, our full-time jobs are mostly just enough to cater to bills and basic necessities. Aside from cutting down on costs of those needs by doing the things above, you can also increase your earnings through sideline jobs. Use your skills wisely, if you’re good at Photography, tell your friends that you’re available for hire.

In my case, I got hired as a copy writer for employers who are in need of content for their websites. You can check out, or for available work. Different employers are on the lookout for content writers, web designers, programmers, etc. It’s a whole new ball game in the freelance world. Just make sure no conflicts of interest will arise with your regular job.

Extreme Tip: Build Your Own Business!

Instead of working for other employers, why not build your own sites so that you can be your own boss? Because of the skills I learned through blogging, I was able to set up websites for myself and I’m still in the experimental stage on different niches but I’m positive that I’ll get somewhere I want to be. Who knows, you might even be able to quit your job in order to focus on freelancing. I know a couple of people who did.

You may check out my other site,, for a history on how I started earning online.

Tip: Stop Going to the Gym

At 1200 Php/month, I stopped going to the gym. It was unwise for me to spend a monthly membership when almost every month, I was out of town. Knowing that things could get busy at work (and my other works), I spent the remaining time for sleep.

dumb bells
pound for pound

Extreme Tip: Invest in Your Own Gym Equipment

If it can’t be helped for you to be active, you can invest on a couple of dumb bells for weight-lifting. Jogging, push-ups, sit-ups, pull-ups, yoga poses are also free. Just ask help from Google on how to execute them properly.

I’m still planning to renew my membership after a couple of months when I don’t have travels planned. My fitness goals are not really to lose weight but still, I saved a hefty sum because of this simple decision.


These tips not only apply to travelling, but to saving money as a whole. I hope I was able to share useful information to open your mind about other possibilities. I’m not saying that I’m financially stable; I’m still living on pennies every payday.

Also, with the things I’ve done; it’s a matter of getting down to the basic necessities of living. So long as there’s decent food, shelter, and clothing, one can survive.

Don’t get me wrong though, sometimes I do deviate from these extreme saving practices because I want to reward myself a little. Like eating that double cheeseburger meal once or twice a month. But ultimately, these pointers can be done so long as you don’t lose focus; and sometimes you can’t lose focus when you have no choice.

I posted my plans prior to the excursion and Chyng never said it better when she left a comment in my blog entry:

“force saving is effective for me. for sure it will work for you too!” – Chyng

Proper Mindset – FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS.

All in all, you need to have the proper mindset. Don’t be pressured to go beyond the trend. There are a lot of people in the world doing normal things so doing something extreme can help you gain something else.

You’re biggest challenge is yourself and how to concentrate in finding out which goals matter more. Remember, saying “I Can’t.” will totally screw everything up. No one said it was going to be easy. Redefine your priorities and focus what you think is more important.

What were my motivations? Definitely the travelling aspect and reaching my goals. Because of these, I was able to

Let me leave you a conversation I had with a sari-sari store attendant when I went out of the house in order to buy food for dinner.

Me: Miss, how much is the canned sardines?
Woman: 15Php.
Me: How about the canned tuna?
Woman: 28Php.
Me: I’ll get the sardines!

— Ah, the things I do to save money.

If you want to learn more tips about saving money for your trips, I suggest you check out these entries from other Pinoy Travel Bloggers:

Flip of – Smart Planning for Long Term Travelling: Saving Money
Chichi of – Sole Sister’s Guide to Saving Up for Your Escape Fund
Lois of – Sole Sister’s Guide to Saving Up for Your Escape Fund (Part2)
Nina of – Earning Money For Travel

Next on my Travel Tips series, I’ll discuss how to save money while you’re already on the road.

What about you? What tips can you share? Anything Extreme to make them more challenging?





This post has been updated and submitted as my entry to the Pinoy Travel Blogger’s Blog Carnival themed How to Fund your Wanderlust? which is hosted by James of Click on the Blog Carnival Logo on the left to see more interesting posts and topics.




Check out my other Money & Travel Tips articles here:

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Please don't forget to confirm your subscription by checking your Inbox. is a travel blog by Edcel Suyo. He enjoys performing headstands and crazy stunts during his trips in the Philippines, Southeast Asia, and the Middle East. Now based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates and working to earn a living, he takes time to enjoy the city and travel during weekends.
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46 thoughts on “How to Save Money for Your Trips and Extreme Saving Tips”

  1. I'm already practicing some of your tips, some I can't…lol specially the "Overtime" thing. I do overtime when necessary but the company would what you to have a work-life balance…
    Build your own business is the way to go. if you want extra money for any reasons…pagkakitaan ang mga bigay kung saan tayo magaling…

  2. Great set of tips, I've been thinking of just bringing a pack lunch to work too. Agree with the shopping, the only thing I bought at the malls the past year was a backpack and some travel gears. I bought a few cheap shirts to use for traveling and that's it. I also do not take taxi cabs. But that earning online thing looks promising. 

  3. Food Savings = Fail (Sbarro and Pizza Hut are always tempting me to give in. hahaha)
    eto napapala pag walang sariling kitchen at hindi marunong magluto. 🙂
    Taxi Fare Savings = Fail (don't have a car here in Cebu)
    Rent Savings = Fail (I pay an exorbitant amount for my rent and I live alone. tsk tsk)
    Great money saving tips Ed!
    If I may add, here's another helpful tool from BPI wherein we can automatically save a portion of our money deposited in our BPI Account. It can be done with minimal effort – just deposit money in our BPI account regularly, set the amount for the automatic transfer and we're done! It's all done online, even the application is done online. As simple as that!
    Temptations could be resisted since we don't have any ATMs for this type of account. And since its automatic, we won't have time to think twice of saving! It definitely promotes discipline in Saving. 
    If you don't have a BPI account, you can easily apply for one under BPI Direct Accounts. Just ask a banker nearest you. Check this out to know more about BPI Direct's Save up + Insurance:
    Disclaimer: Wala akong bayad from BPI sa pagpromote   It just helped me save money for more than a year now, hassle free. Just want to share it with you guys. 🙂

  4. Practicing these already, I can sooo relate! I remember there was one month I worked 60 hours overtime so I could fund my then approaching Cambodia trip. Talk about extreme… all for the love of backpacking. Great post Ed 🙂

  5. Great tips! My weakness is food. Hard to resist going to restos. 🙂 But you're right, you have to save for travel funds. They don't fall on your lap like manna from heaven.
    In my case, since I pay airfare by credit card, I pay it up before departure. Then save up for pocket money. It's easier to make tipid if you know how much exactly and what it is for.
    And I make sure I don't travel again until I've fully paid for the previous trip. 🙂

  6. These are very helpful tips… especially taking a freelance job, just be sure not to be in conflict with your regular job… Me, I stopped the weekly "gimiks" that I'm used to when I was younger… it's definitely a change in lifestyle but with it I'm able to save more for my next travel… 🙂

  7. These are very helpful tips and I really admire you for practicing all of these. It only proves that we don't have to be rich in order to travel a lot. Hindi ko pa to nagagawa lahat but I agree with the freelance/online jobs. Dyan din ako kumuha ng pangtustos sa mga travels ko  🙂  Thanks for sharing these tips Ed! 😀

  8. With my current mental state (mental talaga nyahaha), yung Build Your Own Business talaga ang ine-exercise ko ngayon. Sa mga blogs muna para hindi kelangan masyadong capital. Mahirap, pero i know marami pang rewards later on 😀
    Pansin ko din di ako maluho sa damit hehe. Intentional din na puro plain colored shirts binibili ko para kahit paullit-ulit, di masyado pansin 😀 Kaya ko gawin lahat yan pero di ko talaga magive-up si coffee :)) Nice post Ed! Good reminder na rin toh for me

  9. Ikaw na talaga Edcel Suyo! Hahahahaha.
    Too bad I don't think I'm willing to let go of my current lifestyle and practice what you do. Masyado pa akong maluho. But maybe baby steps for now since I want to be able to travel as much as you do.
    Mahirap din gawin yung iba dyan for a Manila boy. Hahaha.

  10. haha…true to all of those…u learn the value of money once u get to earn what u work for…
    well, since i save up for traveling too, i do those except the clothes stuff nd the night shift thing…napagod na ako sa night shift way back…haha…and as for the clothes, *shucks* mahirap maging babae…haha
    online jobs is a good idea…mukhang kelangan ko na ata talaga magsideline in a way….
    i quit my membership sa gym just recently…pero sana un sa clothes, magawa ko den… =)

  11. @supertikoy: I can understand the overtime, Jerome. That’s why we sometimes travel, as a vacation from work. In my case, I had an overload of travels, hence, I had to also work double time. Hope the Photography sidelines will go full-fledge for you.

    @marky: haha, same here. I’m just glad that I won my backpack which saved me a lot of cash in the process. But I definitely want to buy a tent, I need to learn how to set up one by myself first. You should check out those sites I mentioned and build your profile there. It’s a whole new ballgame, this freelance writing. Hope to talk about it more in the future.

    @Berniemack: salamat bernie! Baon is already a big factor! I know of those who spent at least 200Php a day for food alone. That’s big savings if you’re able to eliminate eating in expensive places. 😀

    @dylan: whoa, that’s a handful but thanks for sharing your tip! Going back, it’s really more on focusing on what matters more for you so you won’t get tempted to veer from spending too much on items that you can live without. I have a passbook account in another bank but your suggestion sounds interesting. Di nga, binayaran ka siguro. haha. 😀

    @RON: haha, iba pa rin ang extreme adventures ninyo ni monette, Ron! hehe. I’m planning to write a separate post while we’re already traveling but I can’t wait to read your post! I’m sure, full of punch na naman toh.

    @pinaytraveljunkie: haha, adik ka gay! 60 hours in a month! Pero I can also relate, one time din, almost 4 hours a day and even on weekends, nagtatrabaho ako ng 8 hours. Ang yaman natin nun! lol. hehe. Thanks!

    @flip: thanks flip, hope to add more Quality content in that site. But the earlier entries are the better ones. Shoot me a PM if you have some questions and hopefully I can help. If not, I’ll refer you to Doi. haha

    @AJ: haha, can totally understand the restos. Cutting down on that really added a lot to my funds. Ahh, credit cards, I’m still working my way thru paying it all off. I want to cut the rest the soonest time possible. But you have great discipline when it comes to traveling when you’ve fully paid for the previous trip. nice!

    @pinoy adventurista: mas magala ka pa sa’kin. mas marami kang pera na natipid! Thanks for sharing your tip with the ‘Gimiks’. Definitely maganda yung reward of traveling. 😀

    @renevic: thanks bro, high five!

    @aleah: haha, wow. galeng ng 2 years na shirts! yan dapat barometer ko bago ako bibili ng bago! 😀

    @lovely: thanks lovely! glad you could drop by this site! It’s really nice if we have more skills para mas marami din tayong trabahong makukuha. No problem. 😀

    @micamyx: It helps a lot when we surround ourselves with other people who have the same goal. Thanks for Krispy Kreme slash Blogging Sessions! Dami kong natutunana dun! 😀 haha, re: coffee, yun nga. Di ko masabing ‘Stop the Frappes’ kasi di ako maka-kape. hehe. pero thanks din, hope you can share your tips! 😀

    @robbie: lol rob. everytime I hear that line (IKAW NA!), ikaw na talaga ang pumapasok sa isip. It’s okay if you can’t let go of your lifestyle, just make sure that you’re earning more lang. And yes, baby steps will be really helpful. I’ve had my share of spending on a lot of not-so-useful items but I’m glad that I’ve started focusing on other things. Haha, relocate na kasi kayo sa ibang region na mas mura ang costs. hehe

    @calai: night shift is nakakapagod talaga. I went back to the night shift after about 2 years of being in the day sked. kaya medyo namiss ko na rin ang eyebags. hehe. I’m planning to go back to the gym though, I need to ensure lang na macompensate sya thru my earnings. yep, magsideline ka na. thanks! 😀

  12. love this post! I've been on a shopping ban to myself on clothes, shoes, bags, etc just to have enough funds for my upcoming trips. It's all about priorities and motivation 😀

  13. Savings is really what we are doing right now while we are still young. Formula in savings i'd like to share is 10-20-70. Ten percent for tithing, twenty (20) percent for savings and the 70 percent would go to your expenses. If the 70 percent can be squeezed up more, then that's even better. In food diet, we are now into some vegetarian's dishes to improve our body's alkaline content. The more acid in our body, we are in fact prone or vulnerable to cancer.
    On owning a business, I already started last 2009 when I already registered my realty business in DTI as my sideline. I have already been affiliated with other realty offices in Region 10, or at least they are 4 in numbers right now, doing brokerage, appraisal and engineering design works. Tamang tama lang din sa mga pangtuition sa mga bata. Lalo na pag private school. In blogging business, or earn online, I am in the infant stage right now. I still have more to learn about money making online. Fortunately, somebody from the US hired me to be her partner on a website. Currently, I am still developing it. I am not an IT expert, but I am willing to ask some of my PTB colleagues for some tips. The website is Please check it out ed. Give me some tips on this. Kayod jud ta bai. But of course, we have to take some rest through traveling. Take some leisure time. 

    BTW, thanks for sharing this post. It enlightened me more to do more savings. Malapit na akong magkaron ng highschool, so I need to save more.:-).

  14. @supertikoy: haha, dapat. magaling ka kaya sa field mo! 😀

    @Astrid: thanks astrid! haha. let's definitely work on our focus. I'm just happy I don't get easily tempted when I go to malls. I always say "it's a lot cheaper if I were to buy it in BKK or KL"

    @Sony Fugaban: thanks sony! we need a little bit of reminder along the way. Really appreciate the subscription! 😀

    @kill3rfill3r: you should, employers are always looking for those who have skills especially those related in blogging! 😀

    @bonzenti: thanks for sharing your insights especially about the 10-20-70 sir! re: the site: i think it’s great knowing your providing more valuable information on the site. content lang ang katapat and somehow the navigation isn’t really cluttered. just my opinion but thanks! let’s keep on saving! 😀

  15. I've been doing most of your tips but this time I will try your extreme tips naman. I need to save up for my ultimate dream which would probably take up at least 5 years of consistent saving to become a reality.

  16. I feel so guilty about that brownie! 
    But anyway, nice tips! 🙂 I do away with not taking the cab, but there are times I would say I can buy this coz I didn't take the cab! Hahaha! 😀

  17. @Dylan: haha, im reading your tips on Boracay right now. dapat tipid mode talaga. and galing ng Midsea express experience mo ah.

    @chyng: this is where we show our mahiwagang baon. mas masarap talaga pag lutong bahay! 😀 yep, sell food outside the office kasi bawal sa loob :p

    @Rizalenio: In my case, I want to go back to the day shift! haha. but not right now. need to add more funds. 😀

    @lakwatsera de primera: go for the extreme tayo claire! is this a Euro backpacking trip? galing ah. tock is ticking though so no worries. 5 years will come by in no time!

    @tina: hahaha, don't feel guilty sa brownie. that was my reward for the month. at least I've finally bought a warm brownie cup sa La Marea! I do that too, reward myself a little when I do a little sacrifice. This time, it's all for the big rewards — traveling. 😀

  18. Very well said, and this is timely since sumasakit currently ulo ko kung pano ko magba-budget for two upcoming trips. Sadly though madaming hindi applicable sakin like walking to work since I work at home. Hehe. Thanks for these tips! 🙂

  19. @cedric: haha, since you work at home, you've definitely saved a lot of money because of the fare & time (since time is money too)! What if we just toss a coin up in the air and hope that a million coins will fall on the floor? too hopeful. haha. thanks ced!

    @christian: hardcore na hardcore especially if we don't have any other choice! haha.

    @dong ho: I've been hired as a blog spammer, blog writer, wordpress builder, virtual assistant, data researcher, excel spreadsheeter (lol) and more. different tasks for people who are too busy to work on these simple jobs. thanks Dong!

  20. This is really amazing Ed. I can't seem to save money no matter how hard i try. 
    Being a girl make this so much more difficult too,
    add the burden of being a penniless student,
    and hating the scorching manila heat.
    and getting extreme nausea from vegetables. I think im allegic to veggies. 😛 lol
    Looking at this is so inspiring and what a challenge indeed. 😀

  21. found  it  quite  hard  to  get  good  veggie  food  when  i  in  the  Phils!   hope  to  do  better  next  time!!!  did  hope thet  would  be  soon..  as  i  had  hoped  to  make  a  short  trip there when  in  Thailand  later  this  month.. if  time  and  money  allow!!  lol.  both  in short  supply!!!!    bernie

  22. These are such great tips.  I've been doing most of the regular ones, but the extreme ones are new to me.  I'm not sure how much I'll be able to do any of those though.  I live too far away to walk to work, but I've been thinking about downgrading from a car to a motorcycle.  That will save money in the long run.
    I love the ways you've found to save money.  You've got a good system for saving money and using it to travel more.  Well done.

  23. @Pandelicious: I wished I knew how to save like this before I was FORCED to save like this! haha. Wow, daming bawal ah.  hehe. It was a challenge for me too. But like robbie, baby steps lang. A small one goes a long way. 🙂

    @bernie: we have a lot of vegetables in the country! it's ok, it's understandable that the Philippines is a bit difficult to travel to since you need to travel by plane. Still when you visit, we have so much to offer! Thanks.

    @Steve: anything to save us more and makes us realize that we can do away things that we can live without! thanks, steve! Definitely nice if we want to save up for traveling.

    @Roman Leo Reyman: no problem! 😀

  24. inspiring..i love reading your blogs especially your HK-Macau trip..
    hope you can share more of your Bangkok trip..we're planning to go there next year =)
    keep 'em coming!!

  25. 60 hrs per month?..that's crazy..hahahahaha..but morning shift naman ako month na lang cguro..(bwahahahahaha..parang tinamad ako bigla)..summer ngaun eh..hehehehehe..but I think If I'll work every Rest Days, that will be 9 hrs a day equivalent to 72 hrs..I think that would be a good savings nah..I'll be travelling to Korea this August..malau-lau pah but at least ako nang maaga..Thanks for the advise pipz..


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