How to travel when you are on a seriously tight budget

Nov 28, 2016 at 2:30 p.m. ET
Image: JGI/Jamie Grill

Working nine to five may seem like a sweet deal but when you have to work a bar job on the weekends just to make ends meet, life can feel pretty tough. Top that off with the constant urge to travel, and, you have one unhappy lady. The thing is, life doesn’t have to be like this. I know, I know it’s easy to say but, trust me, I’ve been there. When you are working on a low income the idea of jetting off for a few weeks, let alone a few months, seems like something that only happens in the movies. But fear not, there are some clever ways to travel when you're on a super tight budget.

1. Travel by bus

It may not sound very glamorous, but travelling by bus or coach is easy, cheap and a great way to meet other travellers. Starting close to home, Megabus is a great way to get out of the country on a very tight budget. Buses have been transporting travellers across the UK for as little one pound for a while, but the company has also recently opened up its routes to include a large number of European cities. This means that you can nab a one way ticket to Cologne for as little as 29 euros, or, venture to the city lights of Paris for 19 euros. Megabus also offers ongoing journeys like Munich to Salzburg from just 7 euros.

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2. Stay on a couch

Now this option may sound daunting at first but it has been tried and tested by many travellers for many years. Couchsurfing is a fantastic website where you choose your destination and find a host. The company take the safety of customers and hosts very seriously and have fantastic feedback and verification policies. This form of accommodation is a fantastic way to really get to know a destination. For travel outside Europe, BusAbout offers a range of worldwide tours and passes. Hosts are usually fun, super friendly and informative, and the best is that is completely free!

More: If you're traveling alone with kids, Italy makes it easy

3. Try house-sitting

If you prefer your own space, house-sitting is a great way to find free accommodation. There are a number of websites which advertise house-sitting vacancies across the globe. The idea is that someone goes away on holiday and you stay in their house to keep it clean and safe. It’s also an ideal way to save on restaurants and eating out. Mind My House is a great way to find home sitting vacancies. As with most house-sitting sites, there is a small fee of $20 per year but when it comes to finding free accommodation, it is certainly worth paying. For opportunities in America and Australia, HouseCarers is another good option.

More: Why I love to travel without my husband

This piece was originally published on BlogHer.

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