Hiking has many health benefits, but it doesn't have to be expensive. Follow these tips to save money on hiking.
Hiking provides you with a plethora of benefits. It is great physical exercise as it provides a full-body workout while improving your heart health and your cardiovascular fitness. Hiking also gives you a great mental boost as it reduces stress, lowers depression risks, and calms anxiety. But it also requires a certain amount of gear. Follow these 11 tips to save money by hiking on a budget.
Shopping for gear can get you a massive discount if you wait for the end of the season. The trick is to choose a color that will no longer be in production going forward. Stores and manufacturers will be looking to unload that gear. So you should be able to purchase those items at a discount.
Hiking boots are one of the most critical pieces of gear you need. They are also one of the most expensive.
Your feet play such a crucial role in hiking, you need quality boots that will be comfortable on your feet as you negotiate various terrains and walk longer distances.
Initially, you might not need them for easy hike trails. But you’ll want the best hiking shoes on a budget once you become experienced and graduate to challenging trails.
Once you determine the type of boots you need, you’ll have to weigh that against your budget to determine if you go with top-of-the-line, middle-of-the-road, or gently used. If you splurge for an expensive pair, look to trim other areas of your hiking budget so you can justify the expense.
Yes, buying high-grade quality hiking gear will cost more money than buying a lesser quality brand. So initially you will spend more out of pocket. The savings come down the line. The best quality gear won’t wear out as fast as other gear. So, you’ll get more seasons out of it, meaning, you’ll spend less money in the long run, replacing gear that needs an upgrade due to regular wear and tear.
Used hiking gear doesn’t mean cheap hiking gear. You can find gently used high-end hiking gear from various sources including at local thrift stores, second-hand sporting goods stores, or even online buy/sell marketplaces. You’ll save twice. First, you’ll get a deal on top-name hiking gear that is relatively unused. Second, since the gear is of higher quality, you’ll still potentially get more seasons of use from it before making a few replacement purchases as it becomes worn.
Pack a hiking knife or multi-purpose tool for extended hikes. These tools offer plenty of versatility as they are used in food preparation, gear repairs, making kindling wood, and first aid. You save money by purchasing only one tool that performs multiple useful functions. As a bonus benefit, it is less gear to carry.
Brown bagging your lunch is another way to save a few dollars on hiking expenses. Sure, it is tempting to celebrate finishing your day hike at a local restaurant, but that can drive up your overall hiking tab. Bringing food allows you to stop during your hike for a lunch break and snack as you go to keep your energy up.
You can use a gift certificate whether you shop for your gear online or at brick-and-mortar stores. So, now you know what to request when people ask for gift ideas for your birthday or the holidays. You could also email a link to something you want to your loved ones so they can purchase the item as a gift.
Discount codes are another option for your online purchases. You can get some decent discounts with the right coupon code. And the retailer will still be glad to have your business.
Hiking with a group of friends is a good way to divvy up some of the costs. One person can drive while the passengers chip in for gas. You can also coordinate lunch. Each person brings one item and the entire group shares what everyone brought.
Practicing patience before purchasing is one way to keep a few dollars in your wallet. Take advantage of yearly sales like Black Friday and Prime Day. Retailers are looking to move lots of merchandise on those days, so deal-seekers are sure to score! You might even find bigger than typical discounts.
This is one area where you need to use your judgment. Renting gear that you regularly use isn’t a wise financial decision as that will be more costly in the long run. But, renting an item that you only use occasionally can be a cost-effective way to avoid spending a lot of money on gear you’ll only use a few times.
Buying top of the line gear is one way to make sure it lasts. Taking proper care of your gear is another. This is especially true if you purchased second-hand gear or a brand that isn’t as sturdy as high-end products. Make sure you regularly clean your hiking boots and backpack while also correctly washing waterproof jackets and pants.
Hiking is a great way to get in better shape. There are plenty of other ways too and Save.com has you covered! You’ll find delicious budget breakfast ideas and a 10k training plan guide. You’ll even find ways to limit the screen time so that you get off the couch and get moving! And of course, there are plenty of money-saving tips!