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Studying Abroad, Travel

Ways to Travel Cheaply in Your 20s

Your twenties are the best time to travel! You usually have fewer responsibilities, you aren’t quite settled down, and you’re filled with this undeniable longing to see the world! There’re so many travel opportunities for young people, you’d be missing out if you didn’t look into them! Take it from me, I’ve been to 25 different countries on 5 different continents, and I’ve mastered the art of traveling for less. If you want to learn more about how I managed to travel to 19 countries in 115 days, check out this post! Here are some of my tips!

Easy ways to travel cheaply in your 20s

Stay in hostels

Pictures, postcards, letters, currency from everywhere… DanyHouse Hostel, Florence

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Honestly, I never stay in hotels if I can help it. Hostels are so much fun! There are a lot of different options for different budgets, ranging from 10+ people dorm rooms, or small privates. Usually, hostels involve a shared bathroom situation, but as long as you remember your shower shoes it’s no big deal! Who spends time in the hotel when traveling anyway? You’ve got to be out exploring! Hostels provide a great opportunity to meet other travelers and stay in a great location without the harsh price tag! Hostelworld.com lets you read reviews and book hostels all over the world!

Related // Guide to starting your own blog + making money! 

Workaway

There’re so many programs out there now for working abroad, there’s something for everyone! Usually, these programs offer housing and food in exchange for labor. The labor isn’t necessarily anything particularly arduous. It can range from making beds and cleaning hotel rooms in the morning to helping out on a farm. Browse the internet for opportunities and check the reviews to make sure you aren’t being scammed. My favorite website to search is WorkAway.info which requires a background check for both hosts and guests! I have friends who have successfully used WorkAway and swear by it, so it’s legit.

Look at this one super cool opportunity to work on a farm in France! What a dream, right?!

Couchsurfing or Airbnb

There’s no doubt that technology is changing the way we travel. It’s now easier than ever to connect with people around the globe! Couchsurfing is a program which rents out locals couches (or spare bedrooms!) to travelers! Hosts and guest are able to leave reviews so you can get a good idea of who you’re staying with before your visit. When I was studying abroad, several of my peers used this service and had a fantastic time! One of the benefits is being able to stay with a local who might even show you around!

Airbnb is a service in which people are able to rent out their apartments or spare rooms to travelers! This option allows you to stay in a comfortable location without the hotel price tag! Once again, there are reviews available so you can get a good idea of the situation you’re getting yourself into! I’ve used Airbnb a few times and have yet to have a bad experience, and you can’t beat the price.

Study abroad

Table mountain #southafrica

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If you’re still in college, there are so many study abroad opportunities available! Your school probably offers several, but you can even look into outside programs to find exactly what you are looking for. The benefit of studying abroad while in college is that you are able to earn college credit while you explore, and you get to fully immerse yourself in a new culture for a few months.

Check out my post on why you need to study abroad if you need more convincing! If you receive any financial aid through your college, this often can transfer to any study abroad program! A lot of young people are easily scared away from studying abroad in college because of the cost. In reality, it’s much more affordable than you’d think! See The Top 15 Unusual Places to Study Abroad for some out of the box destination ideas!

Money Saving Travel Apps

There are a lot of apps geared towards making travel cheaper. Download these now and start saving money on travel today! Here are my personal tried and true apps:

  • HotelTonight – This app lets you book last-minute hotels for super cheap. I know it sounds too good to be true, but it’s pretty legit. I’ve used it more than I’d care to admit! Sign up with promo code SAMTETRAULT to get $25 off your first booking.
  • Groupon – I use Groupon both at home and away on trips, and it’s also a great way to find cool stuff to do in a new area.
  • Hopper – This flight tracker app has CHANGED MY LIFE. It estimates flight costs for several locations so you can plan the best time to fly. I use it to set travel alerts so I know when the best deals are released.

Student/Youth rates

If you’re still in college or under the age of 25, you probably qualify for a number of youth rates for travel discounts! You can book discounted airfare through StudentUniverse and even get student passes for train and public transportation abroad. Always ask about student discounts and don’t settle for high prices! I highly suggest applying for an International Student ID.

Related // Tips for Saving Money while Studying Abroad!

Scholarships

There are organizations which provide scholarships strictly to students studying abroad! Programs like UNESCO specifically target youth travel and research abroad! These grants make traveling so much more accessible while also looking fabulous on your resume. Here are some travel scholarship’s to get you started:

Get a job abroad

Getting a job abroad is probably not your ideal vacation, but it certainly gives you a chance to explore a country while raising your funds. How about a summer working at a pub in Ireland? Or tending to a family owned bed and breakfast in Greece? Get creative and search for openings! Be sure to research getting a work visa for your desired country, it can be easier than you think!

Teach English

Teaching English abroad is always an easy way to travel cheaply, especially if you’re looking for something long term. I interviewed my friend who teaches abroad in Japan, and she gives a lot of good advice for getting started in this post. Here are some companies always hiring native English speakers abroad.

Nannying

Nannying is really popular all over the world, as parents continue to wish for their kids to learn English from a young age. If you love kids and you’re a native speaker, this could be a great fit for you!

A good day for a walk 🌤

A post shared by Samantha Tetrault (@samanthability) on

Happy traveling!

Seeing the world doesn’t mean breaking the bank! Sometimes, it pays to be creative and figure out a trip that works both for you and your budget! Let me know your money saving travel tips below in the comments!

This post contains affiliate links meaning I might receive a small commission on listed products or services. I only promote brands I support and use personally. Learn more about my affiliate policy here

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  • How do you make sure you feel safe/don’t lose your possessions when staying in a hostel? I’m studying abroad in Spain this fall and definitely want to travel around Europe on weekends! Thanks 🙂

    http://clairemariecarter.com/

    • Somarly Tep

      I just finished my semester abroad in Spain and honestly I had no problem with my belongings in a hostel. I carry my most important items with me, such as phone, passport and wallet. Most hostels have security lockers with a magnetic card or a key that stays with you.Hope this helps! Enjoy your semester abroad 🙂

      • Thanks you! The security lockers are a good tip!

      • Samantha

        I’m glad you share my feelings about hostels! I’ve never had any problems either, and you’re so right about the lockers!

    • Samantha

      I totally agree with Somarly, security lockers are a must! Always put your valuables in the locker when you’re sleeping/out. As for my clothes and stuff like that, I’ve had no problem leaving that just chilling in the room. You can also get a lock for your bag which is a good thing to have anyway when traveling since it deters pickpocketers.

  • Courtney Cross-Johnson

    I love staying in hostels too. If I travel solo for an extended period of time, that’s my preferred method. It’s a great way to meet people!

    Cheers.
    -Courtney from thirty30courtney.com

  • Ellen Rose Hays

    This is such a helpful post! I’ve just returned from a study abroad and already getting ready for the next adventure!

  • Molly O’Connor

    I would love to get a job abroad!! Luckily I was able to study abroad, so I have traveled around for a bit 🙂

    http://www.mollyonthemoveblog.com

  • Great article! Too many people find ways not to travel (excuses), rather than find ways to make it work! Thanks for the inspiration! My wife and I try and use all of these tips to travel while we are young!

  • I never considered using scholarships to travel abroad but that is a great idea!

  • Lynn Jung

    I’ve been working abroad this year in France [I’m 19] and it’s been a really invigorating and eye-opening experience. Accessible & affordable travel for young people is so important!

  • Find & Journey

    Great article! I’ve been doing some research to travel more and I am also in my 20s! I love the idea of staying in a hostel to meet other travelers and pay less compared to hotels. Thank you!

    Verone from http://www.fandjbrand.com