How to travel cheaper? (and not with Ryanair)

People travel more and more every year. Roughly a billion people a year spend abroad at least one night. And they, or more realistically, we, spend trillions of dollars to do it. The less you travel, the more willing (probably) you are to spend on your travels. But once you've gotten to the regular travel mode, which means that you don't travel just once every few years, but instead do it rather often, you start caring amount of money you spend on traveling more. Or to be more exact, you start to notice places where you could spend less because of your gained knowledge, because of your experiences, because of your growing "street-smart".

And when it comes to streetsmarts, it turns out that cheaper is often not cheaper at all. For example, think about Ryanair. It's a great cheap airline, and whoever says it's crap, doesn't know what they are talking about. But as it is with cheaper things, they are meant for certain situations. In case of Ryanair, it makes sense to use it on short direct flights with just your hand luggage. And it *can* be perfect for that. Even though even in this perfect scenario, the distance of the airport from the main city might make kind of a mess in your wallet.

Now, thinking of Ryanair, what's a bad money-wasting situation?
- Let's say you are based in...Lithuania? You want to go to Malta? Ryanair doesn't have any direct flights for that. But they just happen to have two cheap tickets, one for Lithuania to Milan, Italy, and the other one from Milan to Malta. Each ticket costs only 20 euros, so 40 total. Not bad at all.
- But you also want to bring luggage, something extra than just your carry-on. One bag for one flight during high season costs 35. You're taking two flights, thats 70. In this case it might actually make sense to use an international shipping service for your bag, even though it sounds weird, Send My Bag for example has better value than Ryanair!
- Due to the bad connection times, you also need to stay the night in Milan. Or actually in Bergamo Airport near Milan. You are willing to spend the night at the airport, but still want to go see Milan for the day just not to stay at the airport that long. Bus there and back...let's say 10 euros total. You eat, you have a coffee, a beer, another 20 euros minimum gone.

So far you've already spend 40+70+20+10 = 140 euros for your 40 euro ticket. If the airports were different ones, you might actually have to pay more than 20 euros just to get from the airport to the town, so it could even be worse. In some airports where Ryanair flies, they might also ask you for something like 7 euros for "Airport Security Coupon" which actually just means extra fee.

All in one, cheaper might not be always cheaper. I got a bit carried away here, as I usually do when thinking about Ryanair (even though, I still don't think badly of it, in general) but you can read more about how you can ACTUALLY save money even before going travelling, here.

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