That’s always the big question : how to find enough money to travel ?
First off, traveling doesn’t have to be very expensive. There’s several ways to travel cheaply.
Second, there’s lots of ways to save money for traveling from home. I never had a full time job, never made a lot of money, but I still manage to save enough to travel, and this is how :
In the same way that we can often think « Well, look at this book/box of chocolate/necklace/anything cheap, it costs nothing, I might as well buy it ! », these same little costs will constitute your travel budget, except this time you’re saving them rather than spending them.
Some things you can’t change, like rent, some things you can. Try to put all of your expenses into two columns : WANT and NEED. Here are some ideas on things you certainly want but don’t really need :
That’s the golden rule : no more restaurants, no more Starbucks coffee in the morning. Buy good old fashioned thermos and tupperware, and you’re good to go. I swear that the bother of cooking at home will be rewarded when you eat delicious Thailand street food for a month instead.
Take one drink (or two), one club, one cab, and that’s just two days in a hostel in Norway that went out the window. Invite your friends over, it will be just as fun !
Dating is already such a bother, it shouldn’t make you miss out on this amazing tour hiking glaciers in Iceland. Sadly, it costs just as much. Play the « wise traveller » card, it should impress anyone as much as an expensive restaurant.
Every time you’re about to buy something, whether it’s clothes, books, high tech, anything, really ask yourself if you need it. I don’t know how much money I spent on clothes in my adult life, obviously too much. Now I travel with a backpack that can only fit three tee-shirts and a jean.
Don’t I feel like a fool.
Other stuff I chose to sacrifice :
Heat – I went through winter with two hot-water bottles and several layers. It also helps you to get on quickly with the shower, and consequently to save on water !
Car – I gave up long ago on getting my license and having a car. It costs a lot of money and brings you a lot of worries and stress.
TV and cable – Also something I feel is not worth the money. You can watch all your movies and shows on a computer nowadays, so why bother with commercials and bills ?
Hairdresser – I learned to cut my hair on my own, it’s really not that hard !
Put that list in your wallet next to your credit card, and be strong !
Remember, if you feel this need to travel, it’s probably because you realized already that it’s not money that will make you richer.
Now all that’s left to do is to change these old habits. After all, what is a new phone or a new dress next to the peace and wonder of a sunset on a faraway beach ?
One last tip : if you feel yourself wavering, call your bank and create a travel savings account. Put money on it at the beginning of the month, this way you CAN’T spend it !