One of the biggest expenses in travel is accommodations. Yes, airfare is expensive, but booking a hotel can be just as much, or more, depending on your location and length of stay. Over the years, I have found several ways to save money on accommodations when I travel.

  1. Use a hospitality exchange: one of the most popular that I have used is Couchsurfing. It can be very intimidating staying in a strange city you don’t know with a stranger, but I have found it to be a great experience. Make sure that anyone you are considering staying with has many great reviews, though, to ensure you are staying with a legit host. Couchsurfing is a great way to have an insight to the local community you are staying in while enjoying free accommodations.
  2. Try a Hostel: the rooms in a hostel are like a dormitory, where everyone shares common areas. Though many people tend to think of a hostel as a place only for young people, that is not true. There are many hostels that cater more towards families and older people. Look around and you may be surprised!
  3. Look for a Home Exchange: this idea is exactly what it sounds like. If you own a home, consider exchanging homes temporarily with another homeowner. If you don’t own a home, look into house sitting instead. You will be responsible for that person’s home while they are away, so make sure you can follow through with your commitment.
  4. Look for an Airbnb: these are becoming more popular lately. There are many Airbnb options available around the world for you to consider.
  5. Stay on a farm: this is my favorite option if you love the outdoors and are willing to help on a farm. This will give you the option to learn more about farming while also providing you with a place to lay your head.

As you can see, there are many options available for the budget-minded traveler. Find the one that suits you best, and get to traveling!