A fashion writer from London has told how she has adopted a frugal lifestyle – limiting herself to a £100 budget on food and travel per week – in a bid to live out her five-star globetrotting dreams.
Bridie Wilkins, 23, who writes for a fashion magazine based in London, says she has cut back on her outgoings, sticking to a diet dominated by tinned fish and vegetables and opting for walking over taking the Tube to save the pennies.
Thanks to her cost-cutting measures, which see her save up to £600 per month, the brunette has checked into dozens of luxury resorts in 19 countries and she is set to hit Copenhagen, Los Angeles and Mexico over the coming months.
Cheers to that! Frugal fashion writer Bridie Wilkins, 23, from London, has told how she limits herself to a £100 budget on food and travel per week in a bid to live out her five-star globetrotting dreams (above, pictured in the Maldives at the high-end Velassaru resort)
Confidence-booster: Bridie says that exploring the world has done her the power of good
Life’s a beach: Bridie (pictured in the Maldives) says she’ll be taking a city break to Copenhagen in October, then LA in November, and Tulum in Mexico in March
The Velassaru in Maldives offers ‘water villas, beach front villas, turquoise seas, dreamy dinners, and staff to wait on you hand and foot’, according to Bridie
Some of her most memorable high-flying holidays include a stay at the luxurious Anantara Uluwatu hotel in Bali, a spot of relaxation at Velassaru island in the Maldives and a sunny break in the town of Seiano on the Sorrento Peninsula at the ocean-facing Grand Hotel Angiolieri.
On the subject of city breaks, Bridie says she loved the marble-adorned Le Quattro Dame Suites in Rome and the Radisson Blu Le Metropolitan in Paris where she had a four poster bed and ‘TV spanning the entire wall’.
In a bid to save for her celebrity-style jaunts, she says she spends £15 on food each week, opting for own-brand supermarket goods, and then a further £5 to £10 is spent on travel. There is also rent and phone bills to factor in.
Talking to MailOnline Travel, Bridie says that exploring the world has done her the power of good and she doesn’t care about a no-frills diet when she’s back in Blighty.
She explains: ‘I don’t think twice about restricting my diet to things such as canned fish – if you love something as much as I do travelling, the sacrifices you make don’t even cross your mind.
‘Travel has changed everything. I absolutely love seeing new parts of the world. It has made me into a more well-rounded person.
‘I’m a lot more confident – I’ve flown alone multiple times and I’m only 23, while I’ve also been on a week’s trip alone.
BRIDIE’S TOP LUXURY SPOTS
Bali – Anantara Uluwatu
Pool villas overlooking the popular surfing bay of Uluwatu. I can safely say the beds here were the comfiest I have ever slept in.
Maldives – Velassaru Maldives
Water villas, beach front villas, turquoise seas, dreamy dinners, and staff to wait on you hand and foot.
Sorrento Peninsula – Grand Hotel Angiolieri
A hotel home to the greatest sunset I’ve ever seen and a Michelin star restaurant to trump everywhere I’ve ever eaten in London.
Rome – Le Quattro Dame Suites
Marble bathrooms and high ceilings set the scene for this Italian guest house. The Nespresso machines and 12 flavours of capsules are a bonus.
Paris – Radisson Blu Le Metropolitan
I stayed in a suite overlooking the Eiffel Tower complete with four poster bed, free standing bath, TV spanning the entire wall and the tastiest breakfast in bed.
Room with a view: The fashion writer strikes a pose on a sun-soaked balcony at the ocean-fronting Grand Hotel Angiolieri in the town of Seiano on the Sorrento Peninsula
Bridie said of the Grand Hotel Angiolieri, above: ‘A hotel home to the greatest sunset I’ve ever seen and a Michelin star restaurant to trump everywhere I’ve ever eaten in London’
‘I’ve also got a new zest for life – I’m so excited to see what else is out there.
‘When I’m not travelling or working, I spend most of, if not all, of my waking hours researching where else to go. The world is a beautiful place.’
While Bridie’s life might appear to be very glamorous on the surface, she says it hasn’t come without a price.
She says she has given up a lot of her social life to travel.
Lost in thought: Bridie pictured in Rome (left) where she stayed at the boutique Le Quattro Dame Suites and gazing out towards the ocean in the Maldives (right)
Bridie said of the Le Quattro Dame Suites in Rome: ‘Marble bathrooms and high ceilings set the scene for this Italian guest house. The Nespresso machines are a bonus’
While she used to be a big fan of nights out, she now thinks they seem a huge waste of money when she could be making ‘memories that last a lifetime’.
In a bid to keep travel costs low, she tries to book trips well ahead of time and keep her eyes peeled for deals.
For example, she booked a trip to the five-star Velassaru resort in the Maldives on Black Friday, which enabled her to get a bargain price. Prices on the island can top £2,300 per person in peak season, but the savvy-saver got it at a heavily reduced rate.
Ooh la la! Bridie found herself in Paris recently and she checked into the Radisson Blu Le Metropolitan. She was treated to a suite overlooking the Eiffel Tower with a four-poster bed
The avid traveller says the beach holiday was her favourite trip to date and instead of her usual tinned fish, she feasted on $25 pizzas.
Recalling the sunny adventure, Bridie said: ‘The moment I arrived, I felt like I was dreaming.
‘The water is crystal clear, the beaches are pure white, the villa was amazing. It’s the one place where you can truly switch off.
Well-earned break: Bridie says she has cut back on her outgoings, sticking to a diet dominated by tinned fish and vegetables and walking instead of taking the Tube. She’s pictured here on a boat in Ibiza
Loving life: Bridie says it’s amazing what you can achieve if you put your mind to it. Above, pictured at the uber-hip Ibiza hotel, Pikes
‘I’ve never felt so relaxed. I can’t believe a place like that even exists. I’d go back in a heartbeat.’
So what’s on the agenda next?
Bridie, who blogs about her travels via bridiewilkins.co.uk, says she’ll be taking a city break to Copenhagen in October, then LA in November, and Tulum in Mexico in March.
In a bid to encourage others to follow in her footsteps, she concludes: ‘You don’t have to save for months – if you really want something, you can make it happen.
‘You’d never imagine it was possible to stay at some of the resorts I do on my wages, but I make it happen. I’m a live-in-the-moment kind of girl and, so far, it’s taking me far.
‘My family and friends think I’m mad for restricting myself as much as I do, but I’d like to think sharing my experiences will inspire others to stop being complacent and take the leap.’