The Argonauts: An Exploration of Life

How to travel the world on a budget

Money Tips & Tricks

Note: This article is a work-in-progress. For more info about money and budgets, read Scott’s budget for traveling around the world on a bicycle.

The most basic tip is to be as self-sufficient as possible. Your three biggest expense will be transportation, lodging and food. So these are the areas to focus on to make your travels affordable. On the opposite side of the equation, why not try earning money while your travel. Many skills have a real value to others.

Earn money while you travel

  • Be a street performer. Can you juggle or play an instrument?
  • Draw pictures.
  • Write a blog and add advertising.
  • Be a travel writer.
  • Skip the hassles of money and trade your skills for food or lodging.
  • Please do NOT beg for money. It may be illegal. And it is disrespectful to the locals.
  • Likewise — I have seen it so much that I have to say — do NOT steal.

Transportation

  • Find your own mode of transportation like a bicycle
  • Go hiking
  • Hitchhike
  • Carpool
  • Search the internet for last-minute travel deals

Lodging

  • Hostels are a great way to meet people
  • Go camping. Formal campgrounds will take care of all your basic needs.
  • Bush camp, but be respectful. If you pack in, take it out.
  • Couchsurf
  • Join a group like warmshowers.org
  • Or just travel a more affordable country where you get a better value for your hard-earned money.

Food

  • Cook your own food. Use the kitchen at hostel or bring a stove
  • Filter your own water.
  • Learn to forage. You’ll find plenty of wild fruit if you know where to look. And there are a lot of wild vegetables. In the Midwest of the USA, you’ll find dandelions, goosefoot, onions, mushrooms (careful) and more.
  • Go fishing. You don’t even need a pole. A simple block and tackle will work in most cases.
  • Go hunting. This one never worked for me, though I tried to catch a rabbit.

Misc.

  • Do your own laundry using a tub, bucket or waterproof panniers.
  • Learn how to do basic repairs.

And there are much more. Send us your ideas, and we’ll add them to the list.

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