People ask us all the time how we can afford to travel when we work seasonal or minimum wage jobs. There are so many ways that we cut down on travel costs, one main expense that we always cut down on is accommodations. There are so many free places to stay around the world. Not only does this cut down on travel costs, but some of our most memorable travel experiences have come from staying in people’s homes. Once we even slept on the floor of a P.O Box room of a post office. Here are some easy and safe ways we have found FREE places to stay!
Our favorite way to travel is by hospitality exchange and Couchsurfing is an awesome way to do this. Couchsurfing is an online community of travelers who offer free spare rooms or couches to travelers. Stay with a local who will not only give you a free place to sleep, but expert advice and new friends! Another plus to Couchsurfing is that you can find hosts in anywhere in the world.
Check out this post to see how to sign up, find hosts and everything else you need to know about Couchsurfing. There are several other ways to do hospitality exchange including Stay4Free and Global Freeloaders.
Working in exchange for food and a place to stay is another great option. The most popular place to do this is on a WWOOF (WorldWide Opportunities on Organic Farms) farm. You can meet wonderful people and learn ALOT. You usually work about 4 hours a day so you have plenty of time to explore the area. Farms range from a single family with a large garden to huge farms with lots of employees and fellow WWOOFers.
Worldwide Opportunities on Organic Farms, USA (WWOOF-USA®) is part of a worldwide effort to link visitors with organic farmers, promote an educational exchange, and build a global community conscious of ecological farming practices. Become a member today and gain full access to our network of organic farmsHouse Sitting
People all over the world need house sitters! This is a unique way to stay in local areas and enjoy an entire house. You often need to look after pets and other things around the house, you also have a time commitment. There are several ways to find a house to house sit for. Most of these sites have a sign up fee to prove that you will do a good job. Some great sites for house sitting are: Mind My House, House Carers and Trusted House Sitters.
“UberTramping” basically means Hoboing. There are tons of places to sleep depending on how creative you want to get. You can often camp in churches, monasteries and temples. You can walk right in and simply ask if you can sleep inside or pitch a tent outside. You will be surprised by people’s hospitality. Make sure you are friendly and explain who you are and where you are going. You can also ask complete strangers to pitch your tent in their backyard.
Another thing to consider is sleeping during the day. You can pitch a tent almost anywhere during the day and no one will care. Public parks, rest areas, beaches and college campuses are all places where you could sleep during the day and be safe and no one will bother you.
Lastly a super easy way to cut down on accommodations is to travel at night. You can book your flights, bus and train tickets so that you travel through the night. Also airports are always a safe place to sleep for the night.
The sites and organizations above provide safety sections of their site, read them over for great tips and always use your discretion.