I'm location-independent: 100 per cent of my income is portable. But my capacity to earn money from anywhere in the world I have an Internet connection is only part of what enables me to travel as often as I do.
I'm also something of a budget travel expert: I've traveled for months at a time on $50 per day (or less!), on multiple occasions. No matter how big or small your travel goals, these money-saving travel tips will help you minimize the cost of even the grandest adventures.
1. Avoid RTW Tickets
Sold by airline alliances like Star Alliance, oneworld and SkyTeam, round-the-world tickets allow you to pre-purchase your entire air travel at the same time. While airlines boast that "RTW" tickets offer savings, this is not always the case; short-hop regional segments are often inexpensive.
2. Splurge Strategically
Budget travelers can splurge too; we just have to do it strategically. Suffered through a month of crowded hostel dorms in an expensive country like Australia? Treat yourself to a "nice" hotel or even a spa treatment when you arrive somewhere cheaper, like Southeast Asia.
3. Eat Ethnic
No matter where you travel, eating Asian food is always a safe bet for great taste at a great price. The same goes for Middle Eastern favorites like shawarma and falafel, and for spicy, delicious Indian curries.
4. Budget For The Unexpected
Suppose, for example, that you've budgeted $75 per day for a trip to Peru. You take a two-day Machu Picchu trek for $300, or $150 over budget over those two days! Assuming 10 more days in Peru, compensate for this overage by cutting spending by $15 per day for the remainder of the trip.
5. Indulge Your Creativity
Documenting your travels not only guarantees you a priceless memento, but is 100% free. Taking up photography, for example, gives you an excuse to explore on foot, which is the best way to get to know any place as far as I'm concerned. I obviously also recommend travel blogging.
6. Make Money As You Go
If you're extremely disciplined, you can even make money as you travel. Monetize your travel blog like I've done, freelance remotely or give English lessons. Alternatively, inquire about opportunities in hostels -- many offer free stays and even food in exchange for just a few shifts per week!
7. Think Bigger
Knowing why you're traveling is just as important as where and when you're setting off. You don't need to irrevocably commit to anything or plan far in advance, but having an idea of your larger travel goals helps you better allocate money to experiences that best help you reach them.
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