Backpacker Tourist

Travelling costs money. It would be wrong to say that anyone can just go off for a jolly without thought and preparation. For some people, without parents who let you get away with long periods of crashing rent free, or the flexibility to up and leave at a whim, travelling can be more difficult.

However, I’d like to show you that you don’t have to be loaded to travel. In fact, by following my tips you will probably see more of the world, get to know more people and learn more about yourself than if you just shacked up in a hotel.


  • you don’t need to spend 300 quid on a fancy backpack! If you are planning on hiking then it’s worth an investment, but if not you are wasting your money. Check out eBay and wallapop for second hand equipment, or ask friends if they can lend/sell you their old kit.
  • A lot of people spend a bomb on fancy looking first aid kits. You don’t need to do that. Go to a pharmacy and buy some own brand painkillers, plasters and whatever other bits and bobs you’ll need and put them in a little bag.



  • For flights check out skyscanner – it’s a comparison site where you can find really good deals, and you can compare flights for the whole month if you’ve got flexibility. I’ve picked up flights for a fraction of the normal price here
  • Blabla car is a great site for car sharing, where you pay someone fuel money to join their trip. Look for people with positive reviews so you can feel safer. Blabla car is a great option between bigger cities but is also getting more expensive these days so do a bit of research before choosing
  • Hitchhiking – I know it might sound scary but in safer countries and especially if you are travelling with someone else it can be a great way to travel for free. Never get in the car if you don’t feel it’s right, just say no. You can check out some great hitchhiking tips here.

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  • Air b and b – a site where people let you take over their homes for a few days – some really great deals here and the hosts will have good ideas of what you can do.
  • Hostels – great way to stay super cheap. I would recommend highly is travelling alone, everyone wants to meet people and you’ll get swept up with the crowd and many hostels have organised parties and activities. Though you will be sharing a dorm with other people you don’t know which can mean a disrupted night sleep if people are coming/leaving before you wake up. You can pay a surcharge for towels/locker padlocks or bring them along to save extra cash. Check out hostel world.
  • Camping – COME ON. I love camping! Get a light weight tent in your bag and you can stay for a pittance on camp sites, loads of which have great showers and communal areas. You can make your morning coffee on a stove and reconnect with nature, what could be better?! To find a place, type ‘Camping near…’ into google, then you can always check the name of the place on trip advisor for review.
  • HelpX is a site where hosts advertise. You help with house work/on the land for 5 hours a day in return for food and accommodation. The best times of my life were spent at a horse ranch in Andalucía who accept helpers from HelpX. An alternative site with a similar mandate, but that focusses purely on farming hosts, is WWOOF.

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  • Bring snacks! Don’t waste money getting the munchies out and about. Stuff your bag with cheapy cereal bars and avoid spending a fiver on a sloppy chain-shop sandwich
  • Avoid tourist traps – in every city there are areas where restaurants are hugely overpriced and rubbishy quality. If you’re staying in a hostel ask the reception for advice! If not, Lonely Planet guides tend to get it right, or check out Tripadvisor.
  • Set a daily budget – decide in advance how much you are going to spend on food a day and try and stick to it! It’s OK to treat yourself sometimes but if you’re not careful you will pour all your money into overpriced and under-cooked pizzas.
  • Disposable water bottle – for goodness sake! Don’t waste your money buying water. Ask for a glass of water not a bottle in restaurants, and bring a bottle to refill. If you have a really sensitive stomach it’s worth considering boiling water before use, or bring purification tablets but it’s not cost effective to survive off of bottled water for extended periods of time.

Hope you enjoyed my tips! If you’ve any ideas of your own leave them in a comment below 😊

2 thoughts on “How to travel on the cheap!

  1. Hey Rachel, great post! I’d also say that if you’re planning on doing touristy things it may well be worth checking out what free exhibitions or landmarks you can see before paying ridiculous prices to get in places.
    Also I’ve just discovered I can get massive discounts on my monthly public transport tickets by getting a signed application form from my employer whilst on my term abroad, so it’s worth checking what you can get from your employers if you’re planning on working abroad!
    Laura x


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