There’s so much to do and to think about when you’re traveling, from getting a passport to packing your luggage. Then there's the whole budgeting ordeal, making sure you can afford the trip you are about to take. No matter how well you plan, there are always travel expenses you’re going to forget about. Here are the expenses most people forget to budget in.

Departure Fees

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In many places it won't be an issue, but there are some countries that charge you departure fees at the airport at the end of your trip. This happens in many popular tourist destinations, including Costa Rica and Argentina. This fee is typically $20 to $50 USD, though some countries do charge significantly more. Look up departure fees for every country you plan to visit and factor this into your overall travel expenses.

Phone Fees

Many service providers charge fees if you use phone data, send texts or make calls while outside the U.S. Find out how much your phone company charges for these fees and include that into your budget. Don't forget to account for extra calls and data you may use, as inevitably this will happen. If you want to use your phone often, consider an international plan or a portable Wi-Fi unit.

Airport Meals

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Many savvy travelers include the cost of meals in their budget. But you'll also want to factor in extra funds for snacks and meals at the airport. Food at the airport is often very expensive. If you happen to get delayed, your expenses can start to add up quickly. Include this cost into your emergency travel fund so that you're well-prepared if you have an extended stay in the airport. If you are delayed, contact your airline about getting a meal voucher. Many airlines offer this service, and that can save you money.

Credit Card Fees

When you're out of the country, your credit card company may charge you additional "foreign transaction fees." These fees can be added to every charge you make, so keep an eye on your balance. You can always call your credit card company or look at their website to find out if they charge for foreign transactions and learn how much the fees are.


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This is one of the easiest travel expenses to overlook, and it's one that you're going to encounter every time. It costs money to park everywhere, including the airport. If you want to save, look into a lot with shuttle transport that's a bit farther away than the one right near the terminal. Better? Find a way to leverage public transit. Make sure you budget accordingly, or you'll find yourself going through your vacation money much more quickly than you intended.


You may carefully add up the cost of your room, budget for your meals and even remember to include how much you're going to pay for gas and other travel expenses while you're enjoying your vacation. But it's very easy to overlook the tips. Remember that you'll be tipping people at the hotel, at restaurants and at venues you visit that have valet parking, so include this into your list of travel expenses.