5 ways to travel for free
Whaaat? Traveling the world for free? I knooow, right?
I know you were dreaming of traveling for free. Or even getting paid to travel. It sounds like a dream job, doesn’t it? Well, actually, there are a lot of ways to do it. The most common ways include free accommodation which can be the most expensive thing during a trip. Here’s a few tricks to save money or travel for free:
1. Volunteer abroad
There are hundreds of opportunities on the internet where you can choose where to volunteer and what to do. Most of these volunteering opportunities offer you free accommodation, food and sometimes they even pay you a small amount of money! All you have to do is find an organization that offers possibilities of volunteering and contact them.
The European Union has some nice volunteer program for youngsters (age 17-30) where you can spend up to 1 year in any European country FOR FREE. You choose an organization and a country you would like to volunteer in, apply for it and you can spend a maximum of 1 year in that country.
All expenses covered: food, accommodation, travel, insurance and even pocket money. Check the website of the European Union for more information about the EVS (European Voluntary Service).
Websites where you can look for volunteer opportunities:
Some of these website are free and some of them require a small amount of registration fee. But hey, considering you can travel the world for free, it is worth it, isn’t it? 🙂
2. Couchsurfing- the mother of free accommodations
My favorite one 🙂 When visiting a city you can search for so called ‘couchsurfers’ who offer you their couch/floor/bed for a night (or even more). Not only you get free accommodation but you already have a ‘friend’ in a new place. Which can be quite useful as they can provide you with information you probably didn’t read in a guide.
My favorite ‘couchsurfing’ story was about a single mother who lived with 5 of her kids and hosted one of my friends. He was surprised that the woman lived in a small apartment with her kids and still managed to get a place for my friend. He asked her why she accepts ‘couchsurfer’. Her response:” I can’t afford to travel the world with my kids. But I can host travelers and bring the world home for them. “
And that is why I love ‘couchsurfing’.
You can register to the websites for free:
3. Home Exchange- swap your home!
Just like in the movies. Except probably Jude Law won’t be your neighbor 🙂
Basically, you swap homes with somebody. The exchange can be simultaneous or not. Most of the home exchange websites require a monthly or annual fee, but considering the experience, it’s worth it.
Popular home exchange websites:
4. Work remotely from abroad- become a digital nomad!
You can easily get a job as an au-pair and live for free with a family. If you’re not into taking care of kids or you would not live with a family, you can find jobs in various sectors: IT, virtual assistant, teaching English etc.
Finding jobs abroad:
5. House sitting
House sitting is also a very common way to get free accommodation across the world. Usually, people are looking for volunteers to take care of their pets, plants and do some work around the house. Sometimes they need house sitters for a weekend, but there are a lot of times when they can be absent for a few weeks.
These websites usually have an annual fee at registration.
+1 PRO TIP: learn esperanto!
People who speak Esperanto have a unique resource available to them: Pasporta Servo, which is a directory of Esperanto-speakers in 89 countries who offer free accommodations to other speakers of Esperanto. Pretty cool, huh? 🙂