So you say you’ve made the epic choice to sail Croatia. While it’s sure to be the trip of a lifetime, you might be wondering how you’ll stay on budget given how overwhelmed you’ll be by the beauty of the coast. You’re in luck – I’ve got five valuable tips for you:
DON’T HESITATE ON AIR:
Book your flights as soon as you can because it may be difficult to find a deal! To say that Croatia is hot at the moment would be an understatement. I’m pretty confident that me and my 27 friends that took an adventure there together are slightly to blame for the price increases, but I painfully watched my preferred flights go up to almost double the cost in a matter of weeks. By the time I paid for the flight, I was flying in with one airline, flying out with another, had to add days in destination (not such a bad thing) but then had to sacrifice on the quality of accommodation to compensate for the fare increase and stay within budget.
Adjust your start and end city to avoid what’s known as an open-jaw ticket. Generally speaking, flying in and out of Dubrovnik is cheaper versus Split round trip, but most, if not all, seven-day sailing trips that make their way down the Dalmatian Coast will start in one and end in the other. Travelling by bus is the most convenient and economical way to get between the two. The journey is approximately 5 hours long and roughly 12-19 EUR per person. This will give you the option to save even further on your airfare by purchasing a round trip ticket.
BUY IN BULK:
Most yachts sleep eight travellers so do activities as a group and negotiate! Interested in a sunset kayak excursion? Ask how much you can save if all eight of you book at the same time. No discount? What can they throw in for free? Want to rent scooters to get around an island? Maybe it’s a better price if you book 2 or 3 at the same time. Are you unafraid to drive on island gravel roads? Take the lead and rent a car, then recruit and get others to share the cost. Nervous drivers will appreciate someone else taking the wheel.
When each traveller puts an equal amount of dollars in to a pool for general yacht purchases, that’s called a kitty. Use the kitty for practical and expensive things that everyone will use. Buy things like coffee, sugar, milk, cereals or quick and easy breakfast items. Stock up on liters of water for drinking and staying hydrated. Make sure you have bread, meats, condiments, et cetera so you can also eat lunches on board.
PRETEND IT’S SUNDAY DINNER:
Croatia is not a cheap destination when it comes to food, so family-style dinners may help you to save. Order carafes of house wine. Get a few appetizers that you can all sample and split the cost on. Divide a main in to two if someone is willing. With all the heat, sun and swimming, you may not have much of an appetite come dinnertime. A destination is best discovered through its food, but you always have the option of self-catering while on the yacht. This is where the home cooks in the group can really shine!
Got any more tips for being frugal while sailing the Dalmatian coast? Let us know in the comments.