How to Travel on a College Student’s Budget

Whether you’re studying abroad or just have some serious wanderlust, travelling in your twenties can be the most rewarding experience in your lifetime. Seeing the world, and learning about yourself along the way, can change your perspective on life entirely. But how do you adventure on a student’s budget? Here are some tips for saving some money when trying to see the world.

Use Skyscanner

Looking for a cheap flight for an exotic location? Look no further, has you covered! Instead of looking on the airline websites directly, Skyscanner will give you a list of the cheapest flights and compare airlines all at your fingertips. This way, your trip won’t break your wallet.

Use Public Transport

When travelling to big, bustling cities, public transportation is your best friend. Look up directions to where you’re staying in advance, and utilize the tram/ bus system to get there. You’ll be grateful that you saved money on a cab!

Bring Your Student ID Card

Your student ID cards, particularly in European cities, will especially come in handy when trying to get into museums or to see major monuments for a discounted price. Versailles, in Paris, is free for those with a valid student ID.

Stay In a Hostel or Bed and Breakfast

Instead of big chain hotels, opt for hostels and bed and breakfasts. They’re an equally safe and inexpensive option, many under $20 a night! While people are skeptical about sharing a room with strangers, just remember that they’re in the same boat as you- just trying to travel without any trouble.

Pick Up a Travel Guide Before You Go

Before you go, check out some travel guides from your local library or bookstore. Rick Stevens, Lonely Planet, and Backpacker’s Guides can give the best and most inexpensive recommendations to any destination you’re looking for.

Eat Some Yummy Street Food

Instead of chowing down to a big restaurant meal three times a day, why not try some local cuisine and street food? In Amsterdam, for example, stroopwafels and ham sandwich carts are everywhere. Enjoy a treat for lunch, and carry on with your adventure.

Travel in Smaller Groups

Splitting the check at dinner or paying for hostel rooms is much simpler with less people involved. It’s also safer to travel in smaller groups, as large tourist groups are targets for pickpockets. Not to mention, traveling with only a few friends will preserve your sanity on a busy day.

Have A Structured Plan For What You Want to See

Go in to the city of your travel dreams with a plan of attack. For example, if you know you want to see the Sagrada Familia in Barcelona on the first day, pre-order tickets to save some cash and avoid waiting in line. Arrive to your destination with a plan, and you’ll be less likely to spend money frivolously and recklessly.

Take It Easy on the Drinking and Partying

When you’re travelling alone without your parents, it can be easy to spend your time partying and drinking. But for $8 a cocktail, it’s best to save your money on moments, not things. Save your money and catch up on some sleep instead, and use it for the next day’s big adventure!

Research Places Away From Tourist Traps

Every city has its tourist traps, where most visitors are drawn to and end up spending the bulk of their money. Research places away from these, for a more authentic travel experience. Your wallet will thank you!


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