Travelling can be liberating. In this world of skyscrapers, office cubicles and cramped apartments, we’re always looking for a way out. No matter how much we suffer from wanderlust we shouldn’t forget about our pet companions and leave them behind while going on a trip.
Sharing your travel experience with your pet can be a wonderful experience, one that can’t be described in words. It’s also therapeutic – for you and your pet.
However, if you’re not prepared, you might come across an unavoidable expense along the way that might just break your bank!
So, here are some easy ways to minimize the costs of traveling with a pet.
1. Have the Paperwork Ready
Many traveling agencies, airlines and hotels require proper documentation in order to allow pets on their premises.
If the necessary documents are not presented, you might incur hefty additional charges. In some cases, your entry to the premises can even be revoked altogether, putting you in a difficult situation.
As a pet owner who is taking his/her pet while on a trip, you need to get your paperwork in order. This includes vaccination records and medical history.
Make sure your pet has their ID tags in place. If your pet is microchipped and take a copy of the document proving that to avoid unnecessary hassle.
2. Do Your Research
Researching on your travel destination’s pet-related policies and expenses is a proactive measure that will save you a surprisingly large sum of money.
Lookout for Surprise Expenses
While traveling with your pet, you might come across many expenses that you may not have anticipated earlier. With limited money at hand, these expenses could be dangerous for a traveler.
Through thorough research, you will not only have familiarized yourself with the costs and where they appear but you may also find cheaper alternatives along the way.
Search for Pet-Friendly Destinations
The biggest hurdle while traveling with a pet is that not a lot of places allow pets. If proper research is not done, you could make the mistake of making reservations at a hotel which strictly does not allow pets.
Therefore, while looking up places to go and stay, keep your pet’s safety and well-being in mind.
3. Look for a Deal
Pre-travel preparations can really drain your pocket. On top of the cost of tickets and medical expenses, you have to make sure you have adequate supplies so your pet is comfortable.
In some cases, buying supplies from your local area can be cheaper than going to your destination and buying supplies such as food for your pet.
Furthermore, it is always good to keep an eye out on sales or deals. You could go online and compare prices which will find you the cheaper options.
A convenient way to find the best deals is to use coupon apps. Some can help you save a lot of money by providing coupons for large retailers around the world.
4. Overcoming the Food Hassle
Carrying around a huge bag of your pet’s food in your luggage can be both heavy and expensive. You might also find yourself in trouble if your pet is on a strict diet or has certain restrictions in their food.
A good way to tackle this issue is by starting to cook for your pet.
Research a little on the nutrients they require and various animal-friendly recipes that are widely available. Consult your vet if needed on what you can feed your pet that can be prepared at home.
This way you can cook as you go, and you will not have to carry around a heavy bag of food. Besides, you will have some flexibility regarding the food in case some ingredients are hard to find.
Keep in mind that this is not a last minute measure. Some animals need time to adjust to food so this is a practice that needs to be developed over time – may be a few weeks leading up to your big trip.
5. Consider the Various Modes of Transportation
While on a journey with your pet, there are a lot of things to know and consider when it comes to transportation. You might want to know which transportation modes allow pets and how much do they cost.
Air Travelling with Animals
The most important thing to check for is pet-friendly airlines and to look up their fees and policies regarding pets. These may include required medical certificates and so on.
To travel with animals, it is also smarter to make reservations in advance or all the spots might get filled up.
Renting a Car
No matter where your destination lies, going by air is the quickest and safest choice. But if the distance is reasonable, going by car can be a better option.
That way, nobody can tell you not to take your pet with you, and the ride would be cheaper. Besides, your pet would love spending so much time with you and the sightseeing on the go. Road trips are where you truly bond with your companion.
Using Public Transportation
An even cheaper alternative to renting a car is to use public transportation. Contrary to what is widely believed, animals are actually allowed in some public transportation. For example, pets are allowed on the New York City subway if they can fit in a bag.
Sometimes they require a small fee and other times they can be completely free.
Again, however, public transport might have some restrictions such as keeping them in a carrier, not allowing dogs above a certain weight and so on. This is where your research will come into play again. So do a little digging and make the perfect transportation plan for your pet.
6. Plan Your Activities
Planning your activities around your pet and yourself could save you a lot of money.
You could leave your pet to a sitter at the hotel while you go out but that would also increase your travel expenses.
A better alternative is to think of activities in which you could bring your pet along with and they would also enjoy. For example, you could go hiking with your dog. It will be refreshing for you and is also an outdoor activity your dog would love.
A trip with your pet is one where you make memories together. But traveling with a pet can get quite expensive. By following the tips discussed so far, you can significantly reduce the expenses of your trip.
So follow these and make sure both you and your pet have a great time. Happy Tripping!