The Complete Guide to Cheap Travel for the Penny-Pinching Passport Holder

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Are you consumed by wanderlust, itching to travel the world, but putting it off due to steep prices and a frugal mindset? If so, you may have fallen prey to the common misconception that worldwide travels are unavoidably expensive. However, contrary to popular belief, exploring new places and cultures doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, many travel-hungry adults consider exploration expenses to be an essential cost, improving their quality of life one trek at a time.

Nevertheless, traveling does come with unavoidable expenses like meal costs, departure taxes, and card or currency exchange fees. However, by implementing a budget, bargain shopping for big-ticket items, and carefully planning, you can live the nomadic life you’ve always imagined. Plus, between trekking long distances, building meaningful relationships, and opening your eyes to new perspectives, world travel has innumerable physical and mental health benefits.

Once you change your mindset and engage in thorough research, you’ll find there are countless ways to travel on a shoestring budget. Here are some helpful tips-and-tricks to cut back or eliminate ordinary expenses such as meals, accommodations, and airline fees.

Consider a travel-friendly career path


Numerous employment options allow you to travel while you work. Whether you’re looking for a career change or just hopping into the job market, a travel-friendly career path may be a perfect fit. If you want to explore on the job and continually meeting new people, becoming a flight attendant or travel agent may be the best course of action. On the other hand, if you’re looking to live abroad in one place, try applying as an English teacher or an au pair for an in-depth look at their culture.

Another travel-friendly profession is remote nursing. This career path’s benefits make it an enticing option, with a flexible schedule, excellent compensation, and career advancement opportunities. If you’re interested in pursuing travel nursing, connect with a resource like Fusion Marketplace, which allows you to browse healthcare traveler jobs across the country with ease.

Become familiar with shoulder-season


A guaranteed way to save money is to avoid peak travel periods. Shoulder seasons—the period before and after peak travel months—vary by destination, but standard times are April, May, September, and October. When traveling during shoulder seasons, pleasant weather, fewer crowds, and discounted plane fairs are an excellent incentive, allowing you to explore on a budget.

Do research ahead of time


Dedicate ample time to researching your budget-friendly options before you book overpriced tickets and booking fees. For example, flying out of an airport that’s slightly farther away from your house may yield chapter tickets, and many budget airlines operate out of smaller airports rather than main hubs.

While airfare is a prime example, this advice applies to all aspects of your trip. Check out discounted railway passes, investigate free activities, and ask about discounts on must-see attractions.

Eat wisely


Food is a fun, immersive way to experience a new culture. However, it’s also typically one of the largest travel expenses. However, there are simple ways to cut back costs while also enjoying the local cuisine. To start, avoid eating in touristy areas. These restaurants typically serve more expensive, less authentic food.

Another great option is cooking yourself to save on dining out. If staying in a hotel, home share, or with a friend, you’ll likely have access to a kitchen and should take advantage of self-made, budget-friendly meals. While it’s less exciting than eating out, it can save you a lot of money, especially if you’re traveling for an extended period. Fortunately, visiting a local market to pick up ingredients can be an incredible experience in and of itself.

The bottom line

Travel and budget-friendly don’t have to be opposites. With numerous penny-pinching avenues, you can get your adventure fix without breaking the bank.

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