Let me start off by saying, I understand that not everyone is in a position to travel. We all have access to different resources and have different responsibilities. This blog post is for those who would like travel, and want to get more information on how to make it happen. Remember, traveling doesn’t only refer to international trips. There are a lot of things to do in one’s own country!
- Decide where you want to go
Do your research, and decide on where you want to go early on in the year. I plan all my big trips for the year ahead in January. I know others like to be spontaneous,but if you need to make it work financially, then draw up that plan! Look at local travel destinations and see what would be affordable for you to try. Another suggestion would be to look at travel agency websites and see what packages they have. This can give you ideas on affordable trips you can take.
- Decide when you want to go
So for most people, this will,to a large extent, be determined by the flexibility of your leave days. Peak seasons can be quite pricey, so start planning early if you can only take a break during big breaks like Easter and Christmas so that you can get good deals early on. If you can avoid peak seasons altogether, even better.
- Draw up a budget
Now you know where you want to go, you need to decide how much you need to spend on this trip. Are you going to be popping bottles of champagne on this trip, or will a stash of energy bars and a water bottle in your backpack see you through the day? Do a detailed breakdown of your expenses. Look at how much visas, transport, travel insurance, accommodation, food and activities are going to cost you. Once you’ve got a budget, STICK TO IT! I don’t travel on credit, because then you tend to get excited on your trip and exceed your budget. I put my budgeted amount on my travel card and that’s what I use for the trip. Don’t spend what you don’t have.
- Raise money for the trip
This is the most important bit. How do you raise the cash for this trip you’re planning. Below are a few suggestions of things you can try.- Save
Obviously. Based on your budget from step 3, and when your trip is from step 2, calculate how much you need to put aside each month. Open a separate savings account for this and put an automatic transfer to that account so that you stick to your plan.
– Think about trading
Please note this is not a riskless activity and it is possible to lose money if you are not knowledgeable (even the experts lose money). Basically, you can buy/sell shares or currency in the financial markets to profit from rising or falling prices in the markets. You can use a broker to carry out the trades on your behalf. Do your research on this one before you get started. There are several “travelling traders” out there, so it can be done.
– Get rid of things you no longer need
There are several platforms you can use online to sell second hand items. Make some cash from that and put it away in your savings account, or use it to start trading.
– Turn your hobbies into a source of income
Think about what you’re good at or what you’re passionate about and find a way to get paid to do it. Take great pictures? Sell your photographs online. Good at writing? Get paid to write articles for well known publications. Good at gardening? Sell your produce. Be a part-time makeup artist, use those design skills, do something! And make sure you get paid to do it. Then put that extra cash away for your travels.
There are several organisations that look for volunteers to travel to a country and work. so in this case, your trip will be paid for, or your accommodation and food etc will be covered. Look for volunteer abroad programs. They tend to entail both volunteering work and some travel. This option is obviously not for those with a full time job!
I know this won’t sit well with everyone, but, if you need cash, consider letting out a spare room on Airbnb. You control when the room is available, so you don’t always have to have someone in your home. Also, these travellers are barely in their rooms, they’re out exploring! So you don’t need to have someone in your face all the time.
Be savvy with your money this year and make that trip a reality. Don’t waste money on things you don’t need. Save up and build memories instead. “The world is a book, and those who do not travel read only one page ~ St Augustine”. Happy traveling!