Money, Money Money

Have you ever heard the expression, “If money grew on trees?”  We all know this expression is not real; however it would be so wonderful if it were. Can you imagine all the money we would have or the look of the trees if it was money instead of leaves? What would you do if money really did grow on trees?

While here in Spain, I have to be very careful about spending money. Unlike in the United States when I spend money, here I do not have a job and since money does not actually grow on trees I have no way to gain money back while I’m living in Spain. This produces many limitations on what I can and cannot do. However, I have been dreaming about this trip for a very long time, so I worked many years to save money so that I would not have to worry too much on what I could and could not do while I was here. I also have to make smart decisions on what I really need compared to what I want.

One example of how I save my money while in Spain is the meals. I very rarely go out to eat at a restaurant while here, because for one my mama’s meals do not compare to any others in town and two because it would cost a lot more money to eat out. The only exception when I do have to buy food is on my weekend trips and even on these my mama packs me a dinner. It usually includes two sandwiches, two or three pieces of fruit, a desert and a drink. This saves me from buying one more meal.

Another way I have been able to save money, is buy walking everywhere. Instead of having to buy a bus pass or getting a taxi to go to places around Segovia, I walk. Not only does this save me a lot of money, but it also allows me to enjoy the scenery, the environment and I am able to get more exercise. Now, with that being said it is easy for me to just walk from my house to the Alcazar which is the castle here in Segovia, but what happens when I want to go to Madrid? It is an hour bus ride, so there is no way I could walk from Segovia to Madrid and therefore I have to buy a bus pass.

Due to traveling, I have been faced with many transportation costs since I have been here. I have had to buy bus passes, tram passes and metro passes. In the beginning they may not seem like they cost a lot, but in the end they all add up to costing a lot more than I had expected.

One way however, I have recently learned that saved me money was buying a three day pass or something like this. Since I only am able to travel on weekends, I do not have much time in different places. For this, I do not need to purchase a monthly pass for the buses. However, on my trip to Holland, I was able to buy a three day bus pass. Instead of having to buy another ticket every time I rode the bus there all I had to do was swipe my card and I was set and it worked for all the public transportation in Holland. This was so wonderful, it only cost me a couple of Euros and worked for the entire three days I was there. I learned from now on to always look for the cheapest and safest way to get around the city.

Finally, I have also found that staying in Hostels (small cheap hotels) that include a breakfast, free towels and linens and free transportation passes save a lot of time and money. If I am able to find and book a hostel that includes all three of these things, it helps out my wallet a whole lot more than one without.

For example, if it includes a breakfast I do not have to worry about stopping at the local bakery and spending two or three Euros on donut. Also, since most breakfasts here are just bread and Nutella (chocolate peanut butter with hazelnuts) I am able to pack some from the table and eat it for lunch. This idea saves me even more money, because the only meals that I have to buy while traveling are dinners.

Since I have had to make more conscience decisions with my money, I have learned ways to stretch my money a little further. Have you ever heard that phrase? My grandma always says it and I never really had to use it until this trip and it has saved me a lot of money. Do you have any more ideas on how I can stretch my money? Or how can you save money at home?

Pretty money, these are Francs which are used in Swizterland.

The different types of money I have used on this trip

See there is no money on these trees

A packed lunch, is always a wonderful idea.

Finding all different ways to save money, even by packing coffee in a jar.

Walking around Is a wonderful way to not only explore the scenes, but also to save money.

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