5 Ways to Travel Without Busting Your Budget
If you are reading this you probably understand that there will never be a, “Right time to travel.” Either you plan for it and do it, or you simply sit and wish you could go somewhere and do or see something.
Travel is one of the biggest industries in the world, so it goes without saying that it’s one of the desires a many people have.
Another reality is that the average person who wants to travel is not rich. Difficulty arises when you want to go to the beach, for example, but can’t find the money for expensive car rentals, hotels, and airfare.
Bummer! If you are one of the billions of people who are living on a budget, you must be wondering how you can start knocking down those bucket list travel items without busting your budget and before you lose the desire to roam.
5 Ways to Travel Without Busting your Budget
Frequent visitors to my blog know that I am a big fan of Groupon. The biggest reason I love Groupon is because it saves my family lots of money. Briefly, for those who don’t know what Groupon is, Groupon is a site on which businesses advertise their wares at a discount to attract customers.
Recently, Groupon rolled out a feature called Groupon Get Aways.
Now, you can save hundreds on travel not just local restaurants, clothes, household goods, etc. A great example of a trip that is running on Groupon right now (April 2016) is:
If you cannot see the words, it basically says you can book a vacation to Italy with airfare and a rental car is included in the package. Cool, right? Separately, the accommodations, airfare, and rental car would be expensive to book, but with this package deal the costs are lower and lumped together.
Another example is:
A two night cruise for $229. This cruse appears to be an all inclusive cruise, meaning food and drink are included.
A few things to consider when booking these trips:
Port fees and other costs like food may not be included. Port fees can add $100 or more.
The accommodations probably are not five star. You are most like paying for an economy plane ticket, an economy rental car, and an economy room. If you simply want to go to Italy economy will get the job done just fine.
This option can obliterate several costs depending on the trip. For these two trips airfare and a rental care, and food and drink are included respectively.
WWOOF stands for Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms. The organization was started in the late 70’s in the UK and has spread all over the world.
The basic idea is that you trade labor for low cost or free accommodations and meals. Can you imagine the experiences you could create if you decided to become a WWOOFer?
There are some interesting stories around the net from people who have done just that.
A few things to consider before becoming a WWOOFer:
Accommodations range from private rooms with all the luxuries the West to tents in the yard.
There is a membership fee that appears to be a one time purchase or $40 or $50.
You do not have to work long grueling hours. WWOOFers report making cheese, feeding animals, tilling soil, making wine, as well as building straw bale houses.
You can stay for as little or as long as you are able to arrange with your host farmer.
You will have to provide your own transportation to and from the host farmer’s location.
Children and pets may or may not be allowed. This is something to discuss with your host farmer.
When your four, more or less, hours your work days are complete you can wonder off and have some fun.
Since room and board is so expensive this option dissolves a large chunk of the cost.
When you say, “Travel club” people get wigged out. Why? Because of how many time shares masquerade as travel clubs.
A true lifestyle/travel club is a group of individual businesses in the travel and customer service industries that work together to provide discounted travel packages. The club buys in bulk, arranges individual packages, and prices the package well below what a non-member would pay on their own.
The options for collecting experiences with this option are endless. Most packages have experiences you would never be able to have if you weren’t a member of the club because the experiences offered are exclusive to the club in question.
The example displayed in the photo is a great reference. This particular lifestyle club had a trip to New Orleans up for four days and three nights.
For you $269 you get:
- to stay four days and three nights at the Astor Crowne Plaza New Orleans in the French Quarter.
- Features standard accommodations.
- Daily breakfast at the Bourbon House restaurant.
- Mardi Gras World tour with mask making activity and lunch.
- Sips, Sights & Sounds night tour.
- A host to help you with whatever you need (as long as 20 members book the trip).
- A welcome reception will be provided to members and their guests (as long as 20 members book the trip).
This is my personal favorite option because we have two small children who travel for free or or at a severe discount.
A few things to consider before joining the club:
The one mentioned here is invitation only as most are.
Not all clubs are created equal. Some “travel clubs” are timeshares masquerading as travel clubs.
Most true travel clubs require a paid monthly or annual fee. The one mentioned here has levels for each budget.
I give invitations for this club. If you’d like one, message me at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit here.
This option often absorbs food, drinks, entertainment, and airport transfer into the cost of the trip.
Transfer RV’s and Rental Cars for Free-$15
If you prefer to keep your feet on the ground, instead of jet-setting, this option might be for you. Not many people know about this particular way of travel.
Transferring RVs and rental cars involves some planning, some flexibility, and a lot less money than renting those vehicles outright.
Things to consider before renting an RV this way:
You have to supply your own food.
Gas is not always included.
There is a time limit for you to use the low/free cost rental fee.
You have to find your way back home somehow. You maybe able to transfer a rental car with the same company for your trip home but that is not guaranteed.
This option absorbs the expensive cost of renting a car and sometimes the cost of gas.
If you can afford gas, food, and don’t want to sleep in your car, consider booking accommodations on CouchSurfing.com.
Briefly, CouchSurfing is a platform that is completely free to use. Accommodations are also free. However, you maybe sleeping on the floor or a strangers’ couch.
This could be a great option for a sturdy young person traveling with another sturdy young person because “There is safety in numbers,” as my mom always says. All you need is an account to book your stay.
Things to consider before booking:
For all of the above there are many variables that could effect your stay.
Safety is also a concern when staying at a strangers’ house.
Your stay may turn awkward at any moment.
Since your accommodations are free with this option, that cost wouldn’t be an issue.
Have you used any of the five ways to travel mentioned in this post? I would love to hear your stories below.