If you are currently in college, chances are you wish to see the world and travel as much as possible. But also, chances are you often find yourself pretty broke. The idea of traveling on a dime is sometimes overwhelming. However, it is entirely possible and it might bring you even more fun and adventure than you would imagine. You can use these ten tips to start planning your next trip on a budget.
10. Travel with (more) friends
College students usually travel with friends – it is just more fun that way. If you previously went with friends, you can now consider traveling with even more of them. This can be a good way of cutting your traveling costs. For instance, it is often a lot cheaper to rent an apartment (or even a house!) if you are traveling with more than five people. Also, if you are staying somewhere a bit longer, it is a lot cheaper to buy food in bulks from some of the local supermarkets. Can you imagine exploring some exciting region with your friends while also sharing the costs of a car rental? Sounds good.
9. Choose what you do and where you go wisely
Your money on the road can disappear pretty fast. Once you covered travel cost and accommodation, you will most likely spend the rest of your budget on activities such as bars, touring museums, transportation rentals etc. But remember that you do not have to do and see every possible thing while staying somewhere. Choose your activities depending on the cost and the importance of the activity. Hiking, for example, can cost very little while giving a great opportunity to spend your time exploring. Get on the history of the town you are visiting – most cities are full of iconic landmarks with rich history you can visit for free.
8. Travel during the low season
This advice applies to pretty much everyone traveling on a dime. If you can allow yourself to be flexible with your time and planning the trip, you can get pretty fantastic traveling deals. Both accommodation and transportation costs much less in the low season. Take advantage of your time flexibility and pick one of these periods for your trip. Extra bonus? You will most likely avoid huge crowds of tourists!
7. Get a part-time/work-from-home job
Yes, we get it, this is maybe the worst sounding advice someone can possibly give you on this topic. But think about it! This could be your opportunity to not only create a budget for traveling but you could also expand on other fun stuff. Festivals (which usually include at least SOME traveling), shows, fancy dinners, etc. Explore the options in your place of staying or, get online and search for many freelancing work-from-home jobs. You can use part of your free time to work and then treat yourself with an exciting travel trip.
6. Travel slowly
This advice comes from experienced travelers who realized that slow travel can offer many benefits. According to this idea, staying in one place for a while will give you an opportunity to find out all the tricks about the cheapest food, drinks and places. In the majority of low-cost accommodations, you can even negotiate a lower price for a longer stay. Staying in one place also means cutting a lot of costs for transportation.
5. Choose a hostel as accommodation
Choosing a hostel for your accommodation brings down the costs significantly. There is now a variety of hostels, especially in Europe. You pick a hostel not only according to price but even according to your taste in music. Hostels are generally the places for gatherings of like-minded and young people traveling, so there are big chances you will end up meeting someone fun. If you are more of a loner type, you can choose a single room – in most cases, you will end up paying less than you would in a hotel.
4. Make use of public transport
If it is good for the locals, why not try it? It is understandable to fear public transport if you are traveling to developing countries. Especially if you plan to visit some of the biggest urban areas of the world. But compared to tourist shuttles and taxis, public transportation is really cheap and much safer than you would imagine. Sure, it is not as comfortable, but you can try to embrace the adventure and remain within the budget.
3. Look for free tours and museums
Nothing brings joy as free stuff, especially for college students! Look for free walking tours, events or museums. These are great ways to explore your destination, especially if you are traveling alone. It can be quite an experience to have a local showing you around. This will help you to really dig into the local culture and everyday life. Also, most people agree that there is something quite special when people show you their city not for the money but just out of love.
2. Avoid eating out
Many experienced travelers suggest that eating out is the fastest way to burn through your cash while on the trip. Of course, if you are visiting Italy, you will not skip on Italian pasta and pizza. Generally, if you are visiting a place famous for some of its dishes, those will be worth the splurge. But otherwise, limiting yourself to supermarkets and cooking will save you tons of money.
1. Focus on local travel
People usually associate traveling with long-distance flights, visits to exotic areas, which make up for amazing social media posts. All of that is certainly exciting but there are a lot of opportunities to travel close to your location, which are equally as exciting. Did you explore all of your local surroundings? These trips usually will not cost you too much and they are often doable over the weekend. If your university is far from home, this is an excellent opportunity to find out more about your new home.