How to travel when you’re broke

September 21, 2015


wearing ByerLeather luggage, Sam Edelman sandals, Rebecca minkoff backpack, Brixton hat 

OK, so me and John are known as the couple who is never home. We love love love to travel. Honestly, it’s not even about going to some crazy faraway destination. Yes, that would be awesome to do all the time, but it’s just not financially realistic! All we care about is getting out somewhere we have never been before, away from our every day routine. Every time we say we are heading somewhere new for the weekend our friends normally respond with “how the hell do you do that?” You don’t need to be rich to travel! It’s all about saving and knowing where and when to go. We’ve gotten pretty damn good at being able to just pack up and leave on a whim also even if we are broke. We even have a little bin thats set up and ready to go with all our camping gear if we decide the only way to get out is to sleep under the stars.

Ok, so here are my tips on how to travel when your broke:

  1. Travel in small close groups. It’s always more fun when you are sharing experiences with people you love (of course) but it’s even more awesome when you have people to split costs with! Gas, Food, lodging, all that fun stuff.
  2. Never forget Airbnb. John and I found this amazing little apartment in paris for $70 a night. It was an adorable clean and modern tiny studio with a pull out couch, kitchen, bath and tv in the middle of Les Marais (trendy neighborhood in paris). Meanwhile my mom was on the other side of the river paying big money for a plush apartment (jelly but… also definitely bragged to her about how much we saved). Really all you need is a clean, safe place to sleep. I’m never in the hotel room or apartment anyway when traveling except to sleep (unless Im traveling for comfort in which case.. I’m probably tagging along with my family).  When we went to Joshua Tree we found the most adorable little house in the middle of the desert for super cheap too! What I love about Airbnb is that sometimes the interior of the places are so damn cute. See our Joshua Tree find here.
  3. Cook for yourself. Ok, I know..going to cute restaurants in places you travel is part of the fun! Lets be real though..that’s the most expensive part!!! What John and I normally do is decide what nights or days we will go out to eat and try to eat at home and cook for ourselves the rest of the time. This is another reason why I love staying at Airbnb! Most of the places have kitchens so it’s just like being at home but more fun because it’s all new. You can save soo much money doing this plus really.. cooking for yourself is always healthier 😉
  4. Travel off season. If you can manage to get out when everyone else is not traveling you can save yourself alot of money. You definitely will find cheaper airfare and places will be filled with regulars instead of tourists. I love this because you can ask them where to go to get good food and good deals or what you should see next.
  5. Buy a guidebook! I have found some amazing restaurants for good prices with guidebooks. Some of them even tell you hidden gem spots and most likely how much it will cost and cheapest way to get there (Shwiiing).
  6. Sleep under the stars. I love nature. It infuses me with love and a new outlook on the world every time I’m far from the city. I know, I sound like a hippie but it’s so true! Every time I go out camping I realize how simple life is. Suddenly everything seems like it’s going to be alright. When work just piles up and we can’t spend any money on hotels we just pack up and head to the mountains. Living in San Diego we’re lucky enough to have the desert, mountains and so many beautiful parks near by. We can just leave and go so the wonders of nature. Of course, you have to buy some camping equipment but it really pays off in the long run as you could basically go every weekend if you wanted to. Wait scratch that… you can also just rent from your nearest camping store. A new destination every time! I went ahead and got the comfiest sleeping bag ever and plush matt to sleep on top of. If you are lucky enough to invest in a sleeping bag… do it! You wont even miss your bed. Camping means you get to get away from the every day hustle and bustle, spend quality time with the ones you love (no cell phones and computer screens to distract you), and pretty much get a retreat.
  7. Road Trip as often as possible! I love roadtrips!!! Need I say more? Drive somewhere amazing near you! If you take a 3 day weekend you can drive somewhere 6 hours away, stay the night, explore the next day and head home the last day at night. So many things happen when you are on the road. You meet weird/interesting/insane but fun people, you talk endless hours with the people in your car and find out things you never knew before, great time to think about life in general, MUSIC!!! and well think of all the sites you will see that you wouldn’t if you were 1000000 miles up in the air flying over it.
  8. Be prepared!! If you prepare everything ahead of time you can save so much money and time to just enjoy your trip! Plan your itinerary, what days you will be cooking at home (or not), make sure you have all the gear you need. This makes sure you aren’t buying random stuff and making stops at the nearest CVS (then impulse shopping..ughhh) and spending more time just doing what you are there to do… travel. Maybe even prepare enough to just take a carry on if you are taking a plane (save money on paying for that extra luggage). Sometimes John and I will say…”next year lets go to Japan! (ps have never been..just an example)” and then we will set a date to put aside since a year ahead and save save save!!! Every month you can put money aside into a savings just for travel. If you prepare you can do so much! but hey.. if you are more like me that you just need a quick getaway, grab your sleeping bag and drive!

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