First, if you really would like to travel and know other places, people and even other cultures, you first lesson is: make it a priority and planning for it! If travel is not a priority for you, you will always find some other things to spend money on and you’ll never have “enough” money to travel. In the case of Sandra Domingos, one of our regular contributors, life couch and backpacker traveler, a car is not a priority for her. “I can use metro, bus, uber (or BlaBlaCar), bike or simple, walking to reach where I go. I never have enough money to go shopping every week or to spend it in a fancy or new trend restaurant, because I put travel first than these things”.
Not making enough money at your job? Why not get a job overseas? There are plenty of opportunities in the world as long as you aren’t picky – and after all, this isn’t a career you are starting, it’s just a way to earn money for travel. Here are some jobs you can get to pay the bills and fund your travels: Au Pair, Hostel Worker, Waitress/Waiter, Casino Worker, Cruise Ship Worker, Tour Guide and Dive Instructor (some certification is required), Seasonal Worker at Ski Resorts or Farmers. These jobs don’t require advanced degrees or a lot of work experience either. Of course, with this type of jobs will get a shitty, low-wage job but that will pay your expenses while traveling and knowing the world.
Here is two websites that will help you find some overseas jobs: www.ciee.org (Council on International Educational Exchange Work Abroad Program) and the www.bunac.org (BUNAC for Work, Intern and Volunteer Abroad). Why not teach English or Portuguese or your native language overseas? You can make good money teaching and is one of the best ways while traveling. “I have an American friend teaching English while Brazil and other teaching English while in Thailand. The world is yearning for teachers and this is a job in high demand. I have heard that companies in Asia will even pay for your flight over, said Sandra Domingos.
To jump start your trip, there are so many ways to earn free flights. “The most popular way is sign up for credit cards to collect miles and then fly for free. Most cards offer sign-up bonuses up to 30,000 points – and if you sign up for both an airline card (let’s say American Airlines) and a general rewards card (let’s say Amex card) you can combine the two point balances and get a cheap flight faster” said Magali DaSilva, our Travel Agent and Tour Organizer. The best way to reach the points you need is to pay as much as you can on the same card.
All airlines have special offers with all the big stores such as Amazon, Apple, Best Buy and Target. Shopping at those preferred stores will earn you 2 to 4 miles per dollar spent- sometimes even more. If you spend 1,000 dollars a month, you can earn up to 3,000 miles just by going through their websites. So watch out of deal, shop at their member stores and put everything on the card.
Do you know that there are services that connect travelers with locals who are willing to let them stay with them for free? Using this site you will never have to pay for accommodation. We mention Couchsurfing – www.couchsurfing.com (*best) and Servas – www.servas.org. Other option are taking care someone’s house while they go on theirs. You can sign up for one of the sites to follow and watch people’s homes for free, allowing you to stay in one destination for a while and get to know it well without having to pay for accommodation. Added bonus: you get a kitchen to cook your food! We mention House Carers – www.housecarers.com and Mind My House – www.mindmyhouse.com.
Do you know there are free walking tours and that you can learn about the city, getting your bearings, and see the major sights? In Europe, you can find them in 90% of the major cities. Also a few in large Asian cities, New York and Australia. For Europe check www.neweuropetours.eu, to Australia check www.imfree.com.au and for New York check www.bigapplegreeter.org. You can also find these tours asking the local tourist office or Google “free walking tour + city name.
You can also save a lot money while traveling using simple rules like learning to cook (to save a lot of money, skip the restaurant and cook for yourself or even, make money cooking for others); getting rail passes (booking ahead of time can usually save you about 50% of the cost of a train ticket, especially in Europe); sleeping in large dorms (If Couchsurfing is not your thing, this is your next best way to save money on a place to sleep); using student and other discount cards (if you are a student or under 26 or a teacher a lot of places offer discounts for you); and getting city tourist cards (which offers you discounted and free access to the major attractions and museums and in some occasions, even free public transportation.
The main point here is that there are several ways to travel and know other places, different people and cultures even with a few hundreds. You do not need to be rich to travel. Like we said in the beginning of this article, the most important is to put it in priority and go for it studying and planning your options. Hope you liked this article and that we can be helpful. Have a nice trip! Go for it!