15 Tips on How to Travel on a Budget

I have been able to travel to many places because I have been smart with my money. You don’t need to stay in luxurious hotels in order to have a good time. When I was a hiking guide in Alaska I met a woman who told me she spent $25,000 on her Alaskan cruise! I wanted to tell her that I spent $500 on my Alaskan vacation, but I held my tongue!

1. Instead of eating out for every meal, go to a grocery store and buy food.

2. Camp instead of staying at a hotel. If that is not an option, stay at a cheap motel like Motel 6 or stay at a hostel. Most people don’t realize that it is possible to get a private room at a hostel. Go to hostels.com.

3. I have become so frugal that sometimes I sleep in my car! You can sleep at most rest areas.

4. Another idea is to house-swap or rent out your home. Go to HomeExchange.com, HouseSwap.com, homeexchangevacation.com or CasaCasa.org. Rent out your home while you are away on vacation.

5. Couchsurf! Stay on someone’s couch for free. Often times, your host will show you around. Go to CouchSurfing.org.

6. Instead of buying travel books, get them at a library.

7. Spend your days cheaply. Walk around, and visit free or cheap attractions. Visit tourist information centers to find out what you can do for cheap! TripAdvisor.com has some great ideas for what to do in any place! My favorite things to do while traveling are hiking, visiting art galleries, going on free brewery or winery tours, visiting cemeteries, going for a walk in the park, going to free festivals, and going to a coffee shop to hear live music.

8. Do not travel during the holidays or midsummer. Prices are usually higher on hotel rooms, restaurants, and tourist attractions.

9. Don’t buy souvenirs. Take pictures instead!

10. Use public transportation.

11. Carpool or hitchhike. You can travel with someone going the same direction as you or if you have a car you can look for people to join you. Go to erideshare.com  or hitchhikers.org. Rides are also advertised at hostels.

12. Find airfares at a discount. Go online to Travelocity, Expedia, Orbitz, Kayak, Sidestep, and Priceline.

13. Instead of going on a guided hiking/bus tour, research information about the area yourself!

14. Work where you want to visit. I wanted to go to Alaska so I decided to work in Alaska. I was a hiking guide at Denali National Park. I was able to go on free plane tours, glacier tours, bus tours, jet-boat tours, and rafting trips. I am now working at Stowe Mountain ski resort. For cool jobs in cool places go to coolworks.com. I get to ski all season for free!

15. Go WWOOF. This acronym stands for World-Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. You work on the farm in any location and you get free room and board. Visit wwoof.org.