Travel Around the World: 8 Tips To Help You Find the Cheapest Way to Travel the World
"Avast there shipmates, adventure upon the horizon beckons! And all that be stopping us is this here empty chest of doubloons!"
Is your lack of glittering booty stopping you from sailing the high seas?
Well, shipmates, I have a solution for you - eight solutions to be exact! Eight tips which will help you stretch your money further and travel the world on a budget.
I've been backpacking around the world for nearly six years and these tips have helped me to stay on the road, having a whale (the nautical theme continues) of a time whilst spending the bare minimum. I have met colourful characters, surfed on even more colourful buses and still managed not to break the bank...
Behold! - The 8 Tips To Travelling Cheaply!Content
- Couchsurf and meet awesome people!
- Buddy up!
- Travel like a local
- Local food
- Don't worry too much about taking the right gear!
- Network like crazy!
- Stay up to date with Holiday Pirates!
When it comes to really getting to the heart of a destination, Couchsurfing is an amazing experience! Couchsurfing is where you stay with a local in their home, often on their couch but just as often in a proper bed, for free! You may choose to cook for your host but the whole thing, even signing up, is based around free hospitality! Couchsurfing is a great idea which will help you make awesome new friends wherever you go and, as an added bonus, you will also save a ton of money whilst travelling the world.
I myself have couchsurfed all over the world; I have met amazing places and stayed in amazing places - once even crashing for a week in a rock-cut cave outside the ruins of Petra!
It sounds obvious but if you have a travel buddy, your buying power has just doubled! Suddenly, hotel rooms are half as much, taxis cost less and you can even share meals. Sadly round the world flight tickets do not drop in price as you can't exactly sit on each other's laps but everything else gets cheaper! If you can't convince any of your friends at home to come with you then take a look online. Travbuddy.com and the Couchsurfing forums are both a good bet and you are bound to meet lots of cool people. Alternatively, simply choose THE most popular hostel you can find for the first couple of days; you are bound to meet loads of awesome people who will be heading in the same direction as you! The cheapest way to travel is as a group of four; your buying power will go through the roof!
Locals know everything. They know where to find the best food, the best bars and they know how to get around cheaply! Take local transport wherever you can - buses, trains, trams, camels - the list is endless. In almost every country around the world there will be some form of transport exclusively aimed at tourists - don't go for it. Avoid taking expensive tourist buses and instead stick to the same forms of transport that the locals use.
If your feeling particularly brave, why not try hitching? Hitchhiking is an amazing way to get around, it's free, unique and you are bound to meet a whole host of awesome characters. Back in the days when I was a lowly cabin boy, not yet in charge of my own ship, I hitched from England all the way to Morocco and then all the way through eastern Europe to Romania!
From Pad Thai vendors on the infamous Khao San Road to the Tortilla ladies of Antigua, local food is delicious, cheap and plentiful! If you eat in restaurants aimed at tourists or in international restaurant chains you will really miss out on some of the best culture your destination has to offer. Take to the street; search out hole in the wall eateries, pancake wagons and fruit stalls! By buying local food you really will save a fortune...
Before you travel, do some research on your destination...
Travelling to India for a year long backpacking adventure? It would be helpful to know how to book trains in advance (it's damn complicated!).
Determined to get past Burmese army checkpoints and into the highlands? One simple mouse click is all it takes to find out how to do this and not get caught!
Seriously guys, spend a few hours on TripAdvisor and really get a feel for your destination before you rock up. The cheapest way to travel the world is without a doubt by doing some research. Find out how to travel the world on a budget by reading up on travel blogs online. Knowing how to get from the airport to your accommodation without taking a taxi is a classic example; it takes about 1 minute to find out about local transport options online but it may save you up to £50! I recommend checking out Wikitravel, TripAdvisor and having a look at the blogs of intrepid adventurers.
Now obviously you want to be prepared for your adventure but seriously, don't go spending a fortune on gear you don't definitely need. As long as you have a decent pair of shoes and a bag you are comfortable with you will be fine! In most adventurous parts of the world you can buy anything you may need, from sarongs to spaghetti, for far cheaper than it would cost at home. There will be some exceptions - for example it can be damn hard to find an adapter for charging your gear or decent camping gear but in general it really is very easy to pick up anything you will need. Certainly clothes, cosmetics (seriously girls, you don't need to take your straighteners to Laos), toiletries (yes, even your favourite brand of shampoo, maybe) and most camera equipment can be bought easily and cheaply abroad. Saying that, once you've bought your round the world ticket, make sure you have plenty of goodies stowed away in your pack; it can be hard getting decent chocolate abroad!
"Your mum's sister's friend's cousin lives in Bangkok, awesome.... can I visit?" This may sound silly but I've crashed with people who I really have only a very tenuous connection with. Whether you make awesome friends on the road or know a friend of a friend in the country your visiting, meeting up with people you kind of know can be a great way to save cash, land on your feet with a social network and really get to grips with the place your exploring! If you want to find out more about how to travel the world without much money, simply ask!! - find intrepid travellers who travel the world regularly and ask them how they do it, online forums are a great place to start!
If your good at networking, you will also be in a prime position to pick up work abroad. Whether it's working in a hostel for four hours a day in exchange for bed and board or pulling in hapless tubers on the river of Vang Vieng (still my best job to date!) in exchange for a burger, $5 and unlimited beer there are tons of travel jobs available out there! If you have access to a shiny laptop, you may even consider blogging online and earning money whilst you travel. The cheapest way to travel the world is ultimately to try and have a bit of an income as you go; if you can make money online your in a prime position to travel the work forever!
This may sound like a bit of shameless promotion but I myself am constantly checking out Holiday Pirates for deals which I actually want to book! The crew here at Holiday Pirates are some of the best virtual explorers in the world and if they can't find you a bargain, nobody can! I've used a lot of different flight comparison sites and booking sites in the past and I can honestly say (without fear of walking the plank) that Holiday Pirates offers the best single location to find amazing deals on the web! If you want to find out more about how to travel the world or the in's and out's of round the world ticket's then the Holiday Pirates blog is a great resource which you should check regularly.