It’s no secret that travel – whether it’s international, cross-country or even just upstate – creates unique experiences and amazing memories.
And college, a time when you’re young, independent, and constantly learning, is the perfect time to take trips.
Despite this, the cost of traveling can pose a big problem for students today.
Whether it’s just a weekend away or an entire semester abroad, checks and bills can add up.
But don’t let money hold you back from seeing the world, because there are plenty of tricks to traveling on a college student’s budget.
Pack light and pack smart.
This seems like a no-brainer, but packing efficiently can really cut traveling costs.
By minimizing how much you take, you can avoid several unwanted expenses, such as fees for overweight luggage and extra bags.
In addition to cutting down on the amount of items you pack, it’s easy to save money by researching the culture and climate of your destination.
Knowing weather patterns and any specific rules or customs you might need to apply to your outfits can eliminate the need to purchase extra clothes once you’ve arrived.
Instead of deciding, “It’s Panama City Beach or nothing at all,” try to generalize your options and focus on wider area.
Whether you want a relaxing beach vacation or a city trip packed with nightlife, it’s often easier to seek out budget-friendly deals when you consider all the destination options that fit your needs instead of picking a specific place right away.
In addition to flexibility concerning the location, being able to adjust your departure and arrival dates even just a few days can open up your options for cutting travel costs.
Look for student discounts.
You can find discounted rates for students in almost every city, state and country.
When planning your trip, it’s worth exploring destinations that will offer you reduced prices simply for being a student.
Beyond that, discount websites can become your new best friend.
Travel websites can give you deals on flights and hotels, while activity sites such as Groupon and LivingSocial can find you great deals not only on restaurants, but also on activities you didn’t even know about.
If you don’t want to bother with finding these deals yourself, purchasing an International Student Identity Card for a small fee can grant you discounted access to over 125,000 locations in more than 130 countries worldwide.
Explore the area.
As much fun as it is to visit the most talked-about tourist spots on your trip, it’s also a great (and frugal) idea to stray off the beaten path when you have the time.
Prime tourist destinations and other activities on the main streets are often the most expensive spots to hit during travel.
Additionally, local restaurants and shops don’t increase their prices nearly as much as those on common tourist paths.
You can save money, and perhaps even indulge in a more authentic experience, by exploring some less obvious options for food, entertainment and shopping.
Take advice from student travel blogs.
Rest assured, you’re definitely not the first poor college student with a burning desire to travel and see the world.
Reading up on other students’ experiences can be a great help.
Whether you’re unsure about staying in a hotel or hostel, looking for the best cheap food in your area, or even trying to convince yourself that you can afford to take a trip, these bloggers can offer you relatable advice and suggestions for planning an exciting trip on an extremely student-friendly budget.