International vacation is nothing less than a dream for at least 70% of the Indians as it requires a lot of money, which is scarcely available with the urban middle class. While there are a lot of budget international holiday destinations that one can think of, but sometimes you want to visit your dream destination, planning for which mind burn a big hole in your pocket.
Greece is one such fancy and expensive destination that not all travel junkies would prefer to visit.
Even though Greece is cheaper than most other of European countries, it is not a typical destination for Indian budget travellers. With the help of travel or personal loans, budget travellers too can satiate their inner wanderlust and explore the country’s breath-taking ocean landscapes, distinct architecture and delicious food. With banks and a lot of NBFCs offering low personal loan interest rates, it is only practical for travel-lovers to borrow now and pay later. Those who are still worried about the expenses can follow the following tips to enjoy sightseeing at Greece for less.
- Visit the city during off season
If you’re visiting Greece with a tight budget then choosing an accommodation can be challenging. Though, tour and travel companies can help you crack a lucrative deal, chances of burning a hole in pocket will remain high. However, you can make the task easier and save on accommodation expenses and a lot other expenses by visiting the city during an off season. When it comes to Greece, the best time to visit the country is spring and early summer, i.e., (mid-April to mid-June) or autumn, i.e., Sept to mid-Oct. These months are the best to avoid scorching heat of the sun and to swim in the still-warm salt waters while enjoying cool breeze. During these months, the number of tourists visiting the country is considerably less and as a result the hotel prices and a lot other expenses are quite low.
Avoid visiting the country in July and August as during these months the climate is incredibly hot and humid. Moreover, the number of tourists during these months is high and resultantly the hotel rates are inflated. Thus, if you’re planning to go during these months it is advisable to check the rates beforehand through a travel website or book with iTraveller to cash on the deals that are often presented to the travel planning websites and agents.
- Stay at less populated regions
In most places around the world, accommodations are quite expensive. In Greece, hotel rates are high but you can avoid it by staying in hostels. If you do not fancy living in a hostel, then stay in places that are away from highly populated islands such as Mykonos, Santorini and Crete. These islands are popular among tourists and therefore have high accommodation costs. Hence, escape the maddening crowds and enjoy the picturesque beauty of lesser visited destinations such as Astypalaia, Koufonisia or Milos. These islands are just as beautiful as the latter three islands, however, are not yet spoilt by mass tourism. You can also explore various other unsophisticated and lesser-known enchanting islands that budget travellers can dare to test. Try these destinations before they too get popular and out-of-reach for you. If you still want to visit Mykonos, Santorini and Crete, plan trip with iTraveller and stay at various popular destinations without breaking your bank.
- Navigate around the city via public transportation
There is no doubt in the fact that public transport is a fail-safe way to save money while traveling. It is way cheaper than rental cars and in some cases the fastest way to reach a destination. When it comes to navigating around Greece, subway trains, electric trolley-buses, tram, metro and city buses are some of the fastest and the cheapest public modes of transportation. Since taking taxis within the city will cost you a lot, therefore, wherever possible take public modes of transportation. Even from airport to the main city, take a bus instead of taxis as it would be more cost-effective. If you’re in Athens, stay somewhere close to the centre as from there you can get an easy access to other places. Athens metro, tram and suburban railway are also some of the economical modes of transportation that can take you from the capital city to other destinations. If you’re taking metro don’t forget to take a 3-day tourist pass as it will cost you lesser than an everyday ticket. If renting a car will cost you a lot, explore even the remotest destinations with KTEL – the national long-distance bus line service that travels throughout the country.
Everyone who’s travelling to Greece will for sure visit to at least one of the breath-taking islands. While most people will go to the port of Piraeus presuming that taking ferry to the islands will be a lot cheaper than a flight. However, this isn’t the case always. Quite surprisingly, taking a ferry to an island could cost you twice as much. Therefore, compare the flight and ferry rates before choosing any one of the two. An early booking may also get you discounted rates from companies. Moreover, booking your return ferry or flight will be cheaper than booking a one-way ticket.
- Think before splurging on food
The next big expense for a traveller is of food. After all you cannot roam in Greece without satisfying your appetite. Also, any trip is incomplete if you haven’t enjoyed the authentic cuisine of that place. When in Greece, don’t miss out on the local cuisine of the places you visit. Avoid going to the main tourist strip as at such places the prices are normally higher and the quality lower. If possible, walk down the side streets and try delectable street food items. At least try Gyro or Souvlaki for at least a few of your meals. Gyro or souvlaki is a Greek recipe made of meat (usually of chicken, lamb or pork) and served wrapped in pita with onions, tomatoes, tzatziki sauce and at times French fries. They will usually cost anywhere from 2.00 – 4.00 euros, i.e., 160 – 320 INR, which is way cheaper than a meal at a restaurant that will cost you around 7 – 15 euros i.e., 560 – 1202 INR per person depending on where and what you choose to eat. Besides Gyro, try out other popular Greek dishes at various inexpensive eating joints or small restaurants.
When you are out to satisfy your taste buds in Greece, go only for those eating joints that have a line of customers waiting. Such places usually serve food that is good to your taste buds as well as to your gut.
- Look for Free and Affordable Sites
All cities have at least one tourist site or a place, which people can visit free of cost. If we talk about Greece, the city has many top attractions that are either free or inexpensive for tourists to visit. Museum of the History of Greek Costume, for instance, is a small and beautiful museum which showcases numerous Greek Costumes from the past. Tourists can visit the museum absolutely free of cost. Other National Museums that you can visit for free includes Philatelic and Postal Museum, Museum of Greek Popular Instruments, G. Gounaropoulos Museum and Athens University History Museum.
As far as free sites are concerned, Lycabettus, or Lykavittos, hill is enchanting. The 19th century church of Saint George rested on the summit of the hill is the highest point in Athens. You can either reach the hill by walking up the steps or take funicular railway from Aristippou Street. Besides the slopes of Lycabettus, the parking lot close to the Lycabettus Theatre is considered to have the most spellbinding and extensive view of the city. Diomides Botanic Garden is another beautiful tourist spot which can be visited without a charge of money.
We hope you liked our list of tips and will definitely include them in your Greece itinerary. Feel free to get in touch with iTraveller for booking your Greece package or Greece 5 days package if you wish to enjoy a budgeted trip.