Travelling is the dream of millions around the world, but most feel like it’s not feasible due to the costs of transportation, accommodation, and other living expenses. Fortunately, there are a number of effective ways of travelling around the globe while also saving as much money as possible.
Taking the bus is usually the recommended way of getting around after touching down. Many cities offer multiple transit options to get into down town, ranging from trains to buses to mini-busses to group vans. Explore the city where you’re headed, and consider multiple forms of transport; or take a step further and hitchhike until you reach the destination you want. Also, fares to a hub city can be significantly less expensive than flights to distant locations. For example, in Germany, Frankfurt trains depart every few minutes— and can sometimes be significantly cheaper than airlines. If you’re travelling light, and like to have the chance to take in the incredible beauty of a train ride down the Rhine, you can save by taking a train the rest of the way.
Couch surfing is quite popular at the moment, but certainly not for everyone. You will often find a person at your destination with a spare room or at least a sofa for you to sleep on, and even play and enjoy online bingo during your off time. The great thing about it, apart from that mysterious “free” term, is that you can get lucky and have a new city guide to show you the sights. Many people hosting surfers are thrilled to show you around, or at least point you toward the best things their city has to offer. The downside is, of course, bunking with a complete stranger. If you’ve only ever stayed in hotels, this might be too far beyond your comfort zone— but for many, it’s a great option.
There are several sites that connect people seeking house sitters to people wanting cheap or free accommodation. Sure, there may be some tasks involved, such as taking care of plants or gardens or looking after pets — but you have access to a full home including a kitchen and maybe laundry facilities that will help you save even more money. (If you plan to stay longer, you may be asked to pay utility bills, but it still tends to be much better than a hotel.) There are several reputable sites deigned to help travellers find place to look after.
If you’re a city dweller who grew up in the country, it’s likely that you will begin to miss the country life after a while. Thankfully, programs like WWOOF exist, allowing those from the city to go out on a wild adventure, where they can work on organic farms growing food or looking after animals. With WWOOF, you apply to room and board jobs on organic farmsteads throughout the world. You learn farming techniques, how people live elsewhere in the world, and often even some language skills. It’s a totally immersive, authentic experience for cheap plane fare and some pocket money.