When I first hit the road 5 years ago, I did not have two cents to rub together and in hindsight, I probably made a knee jerk reaction and traveled too soon. The reason I say this is because I had to return 3 months later as I had ran out of money. I was always determined to travel the world and whilst it is possible to do so on a budget, having more money just makes everything that little bit easier. You can of course work on the road to keep yourself afloat but in my view the best course of action is to save up as much as you can before you go, and here’s how.
All of us can be guilty of hoarding from time to time and it is likely that you have an abundance of possessions which you no longer need, that could earn you some travel bucks. It is super easy to sell things these days with websites such as eBay and Amazon and you should spend a day raking around the house to see what you can find and sell.
Unless you have the option of overtime in your existing job, you are going to need to look out for a second job to boost your income. Working two jobs is tough and it is unlikely that you will have time for very much else but it is important that you focus on the big picture. When I was working my fingers to the bone to save up for my travel, I used to have photos of things like Machu Picchu and the Great Wall of China in my purse to keep me inspired. If you work during the day then lookout for party time work such as bar and restaurant work or driving jobs which you can do on an evening.
You will probably find that once you cut your spending right down that you are able to save up far more money than ever before. There are some many frivolous items that we buy in our day-to-day lives and the costs soon add up. If you can cut out the coffee and sandwich purchases, the taxis when you could take a bus or even things like your satellite TV, you will soon have much more money to put towards your travel experience.
Just Say No
It can be difficult to get the message across to your friends that you are saving up for a big trip and it is likely that they will ask you to go out on days or nights out with them. It is important however that you learn to say no to such events if you really want to save up for your travels. Just think about it, spending $100 on a night out could get you a flight from Panama to Colombia, or a day trip in Paris. Learn to say no and you will have far more cash available to save up for your big trip.
Stay focussed on your travel dreams, cut spending as much as possible and do all that you can to earn more before you go, it may be tough but once you get that backpack on it’ll all be worth it.