Everyone wants to see the world; however, students in particular feel a rush to travel prior to settling down.
There’s no denying that travel, especially international travel, can be quite pricey, though. This doesn’t mean that you should give up your dreams of traveling more, but rather keep your budget in mind and plan well in advance to make your ideal trip a reality.
Beyond finding an affordable apartment for rent and otherwise keeping costs down while you’re not away from home, there are some other considerations to make when it comes to seeing the world on a budget. If you’re flexible and have a plan in place, you can make it happen.
But where do you start?
Pick the Proper Destination
While it may be your dream to spend a month abroad in Spain or Germany, the fact remains that such locations are often out of the price range of most college students.
On the flip side, there are plenty of budget-friendly travel locations out there, most of which are located in Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe and Central America. Destinations such as Thailand and Vietnam, for example, are incredibly affordable and accessible to foreigners. While such destinations may not be your “first choice,” they represent ideal options if you’re tight on cash but still want to see an exotic location.
Search for an Exchange Program
Perhaps the best way to see the world as a student is by immersing yourself in an entirely new culture. There are a number of programs and internships out there which allow you to teach English overseas, for example. These programs are especially popular in Southeast Asia.
Keep a Close Eye on Flights
What ultimately makes or breaks your travels plans will be your ability to find an affordable flight: doing so represents a two-way street.
For starters, you’re probably going to want to book months in advance; likewise, flight prices fluctuate wildly from day to day. Therefore, you should sign up for a service such as Google Flights which alerts you when prices rise or fall accordingly so you can sweep in and book a ticket when prices have dropped.
Secondly, you may want to consider a budget airline as means of keeping flight costs down. While they may not offer as many amenities as bigger names in the industry, they’ll still get you from Point A to Point B and that’s what matters, right? Regardless, you should do your homework on budget airlines to avoid any potential travel-time snafus.
Stay at an AirBNB
Hotel costs can be astronomical, especially if you’re trying to book an overseas trip. Opt instead for services such as AirBNB who hosts can provide a more authentic cultural experience. Although it may be a bit of a culture shock, you can spend exponentially less on lodging this way. If you go the AirBNB route, make sure to read plenty of ratings and reviews before booking a room.
Focus on “Free”
Despite popular belief, overseas travel doesn’t always mean spending a ton of money on attractions. Try to focus on free museums and sight-seeing versus booking a bunch of tours and excursions. If possible, try to get the local experience by simply enjoying the free sights of major cities versus splashing a ton of cash.
Being a college student doesn’t mean that you can’t travel anywhere special. Simply allocate your budget and plan in advance so you can make your next dream tip a reality.