How to travel without money? If there’s one thing we wish we could do more of, it’s traveling. However, it comes at a cost. Tourists flock from all corners of the world to Europe for the grandeur of Paris, the majesty of London, and the commotion of Rome. On the flip side, they constantly have a battle with their bank accounts. Here are 5 tips on how to successfully navigate Europe without breaking your budget!
1. Check out the budget airlines!
Ryanair offers cheap flights to and from 179 destinations all around Europe and North Africa. This Irish-based airline has promoted flights from as little as a couple of dollars, with most flights costing around €25.00 ($28.00) each way. CEO Michael O’Leary suggested the cost of flights will be coming down further in coming years. This will be even better for travelers! Other airlines worth exploring include Wizz Air and easyJet.
A number of times that I’ve used Ryanair in the past 12 months alone is in double figures. Ryanair is absolutely the no-frills airline you expect. It will get you from A to B without a hitch.
2. Buy a Eurail pass!
Eurail offers a selection of rail passes for those adventure seekers who want to check out more than 1 country. Prices start from as little as €59.00 ($66.00) to see 1 country or €114.00 ($128.00) to see 4 countries. Eurail serves most countries in Europe, with the exception of the UK, Russia and a few others. It is an ideal way to travel and see the world pass you by, as you go from country to country and from culture to culture.
For traveling within the UK, Red Spotted Hanky has always been the top website for booking. Be sure to book in advance as British train companies tend to hike up their prices in a timely manner!
3. You can always take the Megabus!
Megabus is one for those on a very tight budget, operating intensively in the UK as well as Belgium, Spain, Netherlands, Germany, and France. Also available in the US and Canada, Megabus is famed for its incredibly low prices and is ever popular among students and budget watchers! The Edinburgh-London route costs as little as £10.00 ($15.00). The downside being that it takes 10 hours, quite frankly it’s unbeatable in cost!
Coach travel isn’t for everyone, understandably, especially for people like myself (I’m 6’2″). However, it is essential for those with lots of luggage. It can even double up as lodgings if you’re on the night routes!
4. Use hostels! (Not all of them are bad!)
Everywhere you look in Europe, there are hostels filled with interesting characters and adventure-seekers from all walks of life, getting along and living together. Contrary to popular belief, not all hostels are bad! Many hostels offer private rooms like the ones you’d find in any city hotel. The private rooms are good for those unwilling to share with strangers, but at half the cost.
Sites such as Hostelworld can offer great selections of hostels. They are fully equipped with reviews for travelers who are uncertain on delving into the mythical adventure hell-holes! I myself have met people from all around the world after losing my hostel-virginity last year. And I’m so glad I did.
5. Consider “Couch Surfing”!
Check out CouchSurfing, which is a website designed for finding a place to stay, either for cheap or free! This site, among other similar ones, relies on trust as well as the kind hospitality of people all around the world. These people offer a sofa or a spare bed to those struggling to afford traveling across Europe!
Sleeping on someone else’s couch isn’t for everyone. However, it could be a lifesaver if you find yourself without a place to stay!