50 days long foreign vacation with family (even when my salary was Rs. 80,000)

I ditched the idea of short vacations in 2015 and embraced long vacations to live a digital nomad.

I was not rich but we spent our entire summer vacations in Thailand in 2016.

Anyone can do that, but there are two issues that steal away our freedom of long vacations

  1. We don’t have sufficient money for long international travel
  2. Everyone will not get a long leave from the job

I solved both the issues by working remotely and finding ways to save money on international travel.

I planned my travel well in advance and used a combination of credit cards + online offers + AirBnb accommodation.

Let’s find out how to afford long international trip events with a small budget.

#1. Save for your foreign vacation in advance

I do not spend any money without planning.

I saved 2 Lakh rupees for vacation over one year. Our goals were clear. We wanted to travel and explore the world rather than spending money on a new car or house.

We lived in a rented house to save money on home loan EMI and interest. Some people call us fool for not investing in real estate but we are happy with our stress-free lifestyle.

I did not have a regular but I made some money from freelance writing, consulting and selling some shares in the stock market.

By the year end, I got a full time job in a startup as content marketing head (80K/month + Equity)

Our day to day expenses were taken care of by regular salary and we planned our travel with our saved money.

Well, I started saving regularly for my next year vacation.

save in advance for vacation

A 20,000 contribution from my salary every month to my next year travel goal.

I will have 3L in my vacation account by July 2017 if nothing unexpected happened in life.

It’s sufficient for a small family to spend two months abroad.

#2. Booking International Air Tickets

I compared the prices on MakeMyTrip, Yatra, and Cleartrip

The cashback offered by MakeMyTrip and Yatra is virtual cash. It means you have to book other tickets from these portals within a short duration of 2-3 months. That is the reason they offer so much cashback with terms and conditions.

#1. Cleartrip offers actual cashback during the checkout (saved 1400 Rs)

cashback on cleartrip

#2. Checkout with PayU money or similar wallet that gives you additional cashback (saved 590 Rs)

cashback on payU

#3. Pay with Credit Card to earn cash back or reward points (worth Rs. 240)

reward points on shopping

Effective cost of Air tickets for 3 people = 58,200

#3. Book from AirBnb 

I prefer AirBnb than booking hotels.

Our apartment selection criteria are

  • Apartment with facilities like Gym, Swimming Pool, Security and Lift
  • Kitchen with stove and utensils
  • Near to Market
  • Near to Beach
  • Proximity to Public Transport

Other things to consider if water and electricity are included in the price or not. What are cleaning charges and how often they clean. Is there any security deposit?

We found a decent stay in 38,400 for 50 days.

Pattaya Travel

Most of AirBnb accommodations provide Towels, Bed Sheets, Blankets, and Toiletries.

To save more – Pay by money wallets like PayU (1%) and use a credit card for additional cashback (1%). Enjoy the additional saving of 384+380=764.

Effective cost of accommodation for 50 days is Rs 37,600. 

#4. Get Cheap Forex

I tried a couple of ways to get cheapest currency conversion.  I did some mistakes on this trip regarding forex which I would fix next time.

From the next time, I will plan my currency like this,

  1. 10% cash conversion in India
  2. Keeping 30% Indian cash currency that can be exchanged at destination.
  3. Spend rest of money on credit cards
  4. If you still need more cash then use Indian debit card to withdraw money from ATM

If the destination country is card friendly (US/Europe/Australia) then use more credit card or a forex card.

Local Expenses in Thailand

It’s difficult to predict local expenses unless you start living. We underestimated the living cost in Thailand.

Everything was almost the double the price as compared to India.

We were buying milk at Rs. 100, Fruits at Rs 120-180 per kg, and no vegetable was cheaper than Rs. 100 per kg.

We did not track our daily expenses like we did in Goa. It’s easy to calculate how much we spend by looking at my bank statements and forex conversion.

  • India – 7000
  • Airport – 30000
  • Debit Card – 40000
  • Local Counter – 10000
  • Credit Cards – 10000

Total – 97,000 living expenses for 50 days. 

Expenses in India

We had to pay rent for the home in India while we were away but we saved on regular living expenses on electricity, travel, and groceries.

On average, we spend about 30K per month excluding rent. Let’s say a saving of 50K for 50 days.

In summary : We spent 58,200 on travel tickets, 37,600 on AirBnb stay, and 97,000 on living = 1,92,800.

If we deduct the living cost of 50 days in India then the effective cost of our vacation is 1,42,800 rupees.

Anyone with 80K salary can afford this kind of travel. You can manage your finances but the biggest issue is getting a leave of more than 1 month or asking your boss to work from a remote location

Let me know in the comments, what you think about long vacations. 

About Pardeep Goyal

I talk about saving & investing money. You would love my articles related to Credit Cards, Travel, Shopping, Tax Saving. I share transparently how I am making passive income from multiple sources online.

68 thoughts on “50 days long foreign vacation with family (even when my salary was Rs. 80,000)”

  1. Hello Pradeep

    very nice article, I too have long dream of working from home at my own pace and you have already accomplished all that, I hope and pray that my prayers also come true. Please explain more about fiverr and amazonturk.


  2. I’m not sure why you did not opt for cheaper flights like AirAsia that would have cut your flight expenses by 50% in the least. Anyhow, some great hacks here!

  3. Hey Pardeep,
    Very Good Article and liked it honestly. The plan behind your successful trip was brilliant. Can you share some finance plan embroiled in excel, so that I can use for my personal plans.

  4. Hi, So I am really impressed with your planning skills. Now the question I wish to ask is; As one of the millennial with a BFA Degree in Art History, I want to work and travel both at the same time. writing for me is not only an hobby but rather a serious pursuit, and the same could be said about travelling. I know in this realistic world, there is no dream job, no tailored pursuits that matches all our needs. I am not one who runs after the payout much as long as it is reasonable, I am fine. I am looking for a job that sends me places on the clients money, and in return I provide writing services and after all of that still able to have some money to put into my bank account for a rainy day. I am not sure who can answer this fantastical dream of mine, but somehow I feel hopeful that If there is an answer to where I can find such a job or clients? or what are the prerequisites I might have to show? or how I should plan my approach?, those questions can only be answered here

  5. Great post!! Learned an important lesson- Plant your work and work on your plan. Looking forward for my own trip. Thanks for sharing Pradeep πŸ™‚

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  8. hi, please add details of internal travel. sight seeing. diving ,snorkelling ,tiger kingdom or whatever other activities u enjoyed.
    which all cities ,beaches u visited? how much time u spent indoor at ur bnb stay.

  9. Very Interesting. Not just an article but a practical experience. Well Done Pardeep.
    You planned and did something which most can’t even think of , this time it’s Travel , Great !!

  10. hi pardeep ,

    my income is around 4 lakh per year
    and i have sbi elite credit card , can you suggest me any other card for which i can get approved like american express gold or standard chartered manhattan card ,i want it for online transactions
    please reply

  11. Great stuff Pradeep.
    I just opened one article and got hooked to your blog. I have read atleast 10 posts in a single day. This is now on my favorites list.
    Simple, short, relevant and informative articles.

  12. Thanks Pardeep for sharing such a nice informational article. As I am planning to travel around the world, it will be very beneficial for me.

  13. This is simply amazing, Pardeep. An eye opener to find the way out from our daily stressful life. I agree it will be difficult to get this implemented, but it can be done with careful planning. You have proven that, thanks for sharing.

    • I also thought that long vacations will be difficult to implement. It took me a while to convince my wife πŸ™‚

      First we travelled for a month last year in Goa.. got confidence and travelled for two months this time.

  14. Hey Pradeep you shared wonderful ideas here for having amazing trip. Thailand is my favorite destination till date for fun. I am single so I can go with friend and have great fun. I have lot of affiliate marketer friends there in Bangkok and we all have lot of fun while making money.

    • Thailand is the best place for singles.. [but my wife allowed me to enjoy Thai Massages πŸ™‚ Lucky me]

      I heard that Thailand is favorite place for SEO and Affiliate experts.

      Would love to explore more on that front.

  15. A great insight… it is always nice to read something like this which gives you something to think about and since it is coming from a friend makes it more special.. Read your Goa article as well. Hoping to read more such stuff.. Cheers

  16. Just wonderful and awesome, definitely well planned trips helps you enjoy more and spend less. I hope you let your wife shop around in Thailand which is not to be counted :).
    One compliment I would like to give you that after reading your inspiring articles I make sure that I also go atleast once a year to enjoy my vacation with my family be it a small or long which ever my job and salary allow me. Thanks.

  17. Just the kind of thing I was looking for. One question though, how were to able to focus on your work when you were not at your work desk? Wasn’t it a challenge to travel and work at the same time?

    • Infact, the work productivity increased during my travel.

      No visitors.
      No household shopping.
      No birthdays, no marriages, no outside disturbances.

      Only family time and work time.


  18. You are absolutely honest, transparent and open.You have also described various tools in a way one can easily understand and execute. You are an ‘open source’ of wonderful ideas. But please mind it, this is ‘financial planning’ and not ‘a journey to financial freedom’. Financial freedom is when you don’t need to look out for coupons and small savings. Nevertheless, the article is brilliant and will inspire a lot many people. You are really wonderful. Don’t change. Stay this way. God bless !

    • Thank you Mr. Khurana.

      If you see on left side, I wrote few articles on earning passive income. That is beginning of financial freedom πŸ™‚

      And sorry, I could not visit your restaurent till date.. Every day if busier than previous day. Will see you soon…

  19. Totally inspired reading this. Have been thinking of getting onto the location independent lifestyle for a long time and this just inspires me more.

    Love the honesty in your posts.

  20. Nice article Pradeep. I also like to book accommodation through airbnb. They are good. Nice to know about Cleartrip.
    Would love to do this type of trip myself. Thank you very much.


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