Ever wonder how some people can travel so much? Are they millionaires with unlimited funds to travel the way they do? Or are they just very clever with how they do it?
I am a frugal traveler. I stay in hostels – but not in the dorms. A lot of hostels I have found have single rooms where you share the common space, kitchen and bathroom, but you have a private room that has locked doors. I only used hostels while traveling through Chile and I was able to get amazing hostels. My hostel in La Serena was more like an apartment and I was at the top of the building and had my own private deck looking out at both the ocean and the Andes. A kitchen and dining room, plus a bedroom and a private bathroom. The bathroom left much to be desired but the rest of the place was amazing.
And the hostel I stayed at in San Pedro de Atacama was out of this world. Again, it was an apartment style hostel – I had a kitchen and sitting area, with the bathroom on the main level. Upstairs, the bedroom had a huge bunk bed as well as a double bed. It was all in one room and all for me! But the best part of the hostel was the terrace that the bedroom opened up to. A beautiful balcony/terrace that I was able to sit out on (chairs were out there for me) and gaze at the amazing sky in the desert. I saw the Milky Way clearly and all from the comfort of my stay. Truly breathtaking.
Another way I travel frugally is eating where the locals do, as well as engaging in street food. It’s cheaper, sometimes tastier than the big places, and you feel like a local. Also staying in hostels a lot of them give you access to the kitchen so buying groceries is definitely cheaper than eating out all the time. It’s another great way to save money when travelling.
I am a HUGE fan of Excel and always have a spreadsheet opened for helping me save money for traveling. I’ve been using Excel ever since I moved to Calgary way back in 2011. Excel got me to Italy, Prague, China, Chile and my Spain trip. All using cash and Excel. It can be done!
I won’t tell people how to live, but if someone is complaining that they can’t afford to travel while holding their $10 drink from Starbucks, perhaps they need to quit that habit and save that money for traveling instead. $10 a day can add up to a pretty decent trip in a year’s time!
If you want to travel, there is always a way!