With a little planning, anyone can afford to explore the world… and we do mean anyone. UsingMiles.com has identified five of the best ways to travel and stay abroad on a tight budget. There are countless ways to satisfy your wanderlust and still have enough money left over for souvenirs!
1. Volunteering and Home stays
If you are a serious traveler, you know that costs can quickly skyrocket. If you’re willing to volunteer, however, you can live abroad for as little as $800 for five months. You simply spend a couple hours a day teaching English (or doing something specific to your field) and spend the rest of the time exploring the country. Not only do you benefit from the warm, fuzzy feeling you get from helping the less fortunate, you gain a first hand experience of how locals live by staying with a host family. The best part is, that $800 pays for all your meals too! Get started with the links below:
- International Volunteer HQ
- Peace Corps
- Center for Cultural Interchange
- Community Advancement Nepal
2. Organize your Frequent Flyer Miles…and use them!
Many people earn enough frequent flyer points to qualify for great rewards but either don’t know how to redeem them, or forget that they eventually expire. Loyalty point management can be tricky, especially if you have multiple accounts. Take a minute to sit down and enter your loyalty programs in the UsingMiles.com dashboard to efficiently manage all of your accounts. Secondly, you really CAN use your miles to travel. Airlines must reserve a portion of their seating inventory for awards (usually 5%), but many end up giving away 10% or more of their seats to awards. The ability to redeem depends on your timing and strategy. Searching for awards on UsingMiles.com allows you to search across brands simultaneously, which saves lots of time. Setting up award alerts can also help you get a ticket when it becomes available.
3. Exchange Work For Hostel Stay
Mountaineers who travel the world looking for the next big climb are well aware of how to live for free in hostels throughout Europe. All you really have to do is talk to the owner and organize to clean sheets or cook food. The first step is to figure out where to go. Next, using the links we’ve provided, you can start contacting hostels and ask them what they want you to do. Don’t be afraid to sell yourself, especially if you have a special talent that might help them solve a problem (handyman, marketing, PR, etc.) Hostels throughout the world are small, informal businesses and often will gladly except barters for free housing.
4. Be a Deckhand on a Cruise Ship
How do you feel about embracing the spirit of adventure in Moby Dick? You can actually work with cruise ship companies and smaller ships, as a “deckhand,” earning travel money while you experience life on the sea. Cruise ships sign short work contracts constantly and learning how to work on a ship could provide years of free travel. Besides, what could be more adventurous than traveling the world by sea? Like working for housing in hostels, the best way to start is by contacting cruise line companies directly. Here’s some simple tutorials to get you started.
- Simple steps to becoming a deckhand
- Being a deckhand as a career
5. Get Discounts by Traveling in Groups
If you can get enough people together, or if you can organize a company getaway, there are several companies who package group deals for huge savings. Here are a few of the best ones.
Anybody can travel. You just need to be creative, consider your options and go for it! We’ll see you there.
“Choose the World You See, and See the World You Choose.” —- Jonathan Lockwood Huie