Imagine for a moment what a truly travel-filled life would look like for you if money were no object.
Maybe you’d spend a few weeks (or a few months) a year in a sunny beach town… sailing, surfing, enjoying the warm ocean.
Or maybe you’d take a European escape each summer… dine with a view of the Eiffel Tower, grab a Guinness in Dublin or watch the sun set on white-washed Santorini in Greece…
Perhaps you’ve always fantasized about a second home somewhere it doesn’t snow so you could escape the cold each winter and embrace an “endless summer” lifestyle.
Or maybe you’ve always dreamed of exploring the world… watching the sun rise on the ruins at Angkor Wat in Cambodia, seeing the wildlife in the Galapagos Islands or playing golf on Portugal’s Algarve.
Well, I’ve got good news: With the right travel strategies in hand, you could do any—or all—of that. And you don’t have to have deep pockets to make it your reality.
Consider, for instance, these three proven travel tips from insiders who know how to turn a modest travel budget into an expansive experience.
The tips below are just a small sample of the many life-changing strategies that can be found our FREE report:
Accommodation costs can drive your travel bill up. But there’s a savvy way to eliminate that expense altogether: Housesit for somebody who wants a responsible person (like you) to watch their home.
It’s something you can do for a long weekend, a week, or months at a time—pretty much anywhere in the world. You typically don’t get paid—but you get a place to stay at no charge.
“We have been housesitting full-time since 2015,” says Cheri Moore. “Our ‘alternate lives’ have included caring for an estate in the south of France and watching over a luxury apartment with its own private park in Edinburgh, Scotland. Some of our sits include caring for dogs, cats, and occasionally more exotic animals. But this only enriches the experience, since we love pets, and miss having ones of our own.”
“Since we retired in 2015, we have been on the move, using housesitting as a way to reduce living expenses and to finance our travels. This has saved us thousands of dollars. And the reward isn’t just free lodging. We have stayed in luxury homes with pools and tennis courts. We have sampled expensive wines, been chauffeured to local points of interest off the tourist track and supplied with the family car for sightseeing. In fact, cars are frequently provided when housesitting, eliminating rental costs.”
The less often you move around on a trip, the easier it is to lower your costs. First, you eliminate transportation fees, which can add up fast if you’re constantly on the move.
With a gentler itinerary, by contrast, you’re more likely to be in a position to take advantage of longer-stay deals at hotels or apartments. And you’ll find you often enrich your travel experience, at the same time.
By sticking in one place for a few weeks or months at a stretch, you’ll discover where the locals shop, dine, and how they live day-to-day. Off the tourist trail, you’ll spend less, simple as that.
Retirees Chip and Bonnie McKenney have been traveling slowly, successfully, for years. “We travel around the world on less money than it cost us to stay home,” Bonny says. “Slow travel helps us live the life we want. It allows us to dig deeper into the communities we visit and helps us maintain our Social Security budget. Our average annual budget over the last six years [traveling] is $2,200 a month for two. This includes all transportation, rent, utilities, internet, medical insurance, medical and dental costs, groceries, restaurants and entertainment, clothing, mail service, Skype, visas and foreign fees, and a personal allowance.”
“With repositioning cruises… for as little as $42 a day, we can travel the world in style, with no jet lag—and we arrive at the other end relaxed and raring to go,” says seasoned traveler, Jane Dempster-Smith. “This is our new way of traveling—if there is a repositioning cruise when and where we want to go, we will be on it.”
When cruise companies need to reposition their ships and crew for the start of a new season: for example, Europe to the Caribbean, the Middle East to Canada, and Australia to the U.S. or Asia, and vice versa, they offer what’s called “repositioning cruises” and you can buy a berth for a fraction of what a typical cruise would cost.
“There tend to be fewer passengers on a repositioning cruise,” says Dempster-Smith. “Our ship, the M.V. Monarch, could carry 2,800, and in total we had 1,800 passengers and crew. On average, airfares between Spain and Panama range from $700 to $900, depending on the carrier and the season. Our total cost (for 15 nights) per person was $623.”
These are just three of many, many shortcuts that can allow you to travel better than you do now but spend way, way less than you assume you have to. At International Living, we’re committed to showing our readers what they are.
If you like the idea of traveling like a king on a working-class budget, get ahold of International Living’s report:
It’s chock full of how-to recommendations, resources, contacts, and strategies that deliver high-end travel without the high-end price tag.
Have you ever used housesitting as a way to travel in style (and on the cheap?) Have you ever taken a repositioning cruise? What other ways do you use to save money while traveling? Let’s have a chat!
Editor’s note: this advertorial was written by Jennifer Stevens at International Living.