The question of where to stay and how much is a tough one for most travelers.
Even harder when traveling on a budget. You saved up for the perfect vacation only to find nearly half going towards hotel and flight. The truth is, accommodation can be super cheap with a little creativity and research.
Here are 5 creative ways to get cheap accommodation when traveling.
1. Stay in a Dorm
Many universities rent out their dorms during the summer break for very low prices. It is surprising how many world renowned universities do it.
All you have to do is find a school, call the housing department and inquire about summer rental rates. Private universities are the best.
Just make sure to bring sleeping essentials (I.e. Towels, sheets, etc.)
Camping is an experience all on its own which can be done pretty much anywhere. Plus it’s a great way to get in touch with nature. Camping the Ring Road in Iceland, sleeping in the Alps, or gazing out at the stars in Thailand. The list goes on and on.
Camping provides an inexpensive alternative but gives a rewarding experience. Make sure to research and stay in camping designated areas.
3. Couch Surfing
To be honest, I did not like the idea of couch surfing when I first heard about it. Something about sleeping a stranger’s home seemed a little un-comforting.
However, with the birth of Airbnb and sleeping in countless hostels while backpacking, I realized couch surfing is no different.
Most couch surfing hosts are travelers themselves who like to pay it forward. In actuality it’s travelers meeting travelers. The best part is, it’s FREE!
4. Home Exchange
Did you ever see the movie The Holiday? Two people from different countries swapped houses for a few weeks. Good news is this house swap idea exists and its called Home Exchange.
Their whole saying is, “Travel Anywhere. Live Like A Local. Stay For Free”. Home Exchange is a trusted company with thousands of locations all around the world. Check out their website for more information.
There are tons of volunteer programs out there offering free accommodation to their volunteers. Workaway is a popular one located in over 155 countries.
Not only are you giving back, but getting free accommodation. Such a humbling experience to give back and meet people from all over the world. Easily the most authentic trip one can have in their life.
What are some ways you saved money on accommodation? Share in the comments below!