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How To Pay For Your Dream Trip Without Selling Your Body - Top 30 Tips

If you don’t do wild things while you’re young, you’ll have nothing to smile about when you’re old ;) Here are some awesome tips that will make sure you can do those wild things....


(Above) This is the famous island of Santorini in Greece. Did you know that if you stay out of the main tourist village (where prices can reach up to US$500 per night) you can get a private room for two, with a double bed, a  private bathroom, and be a five minute walk from the beach for just US$20 per night? Paradise at bargain prices. 

Flickr MarcelGermain. 


The first thing you need to look at is how much is it costing you to live? What are you spending money on that you don't need? Here are some awesome and unique ways of saving and making some quick cash before you leave:


Make Your Landline and Cellphone Calls for Free Through the Internet
The cheapest thing to do with your phone is not use it. Firstly, you can get rid of your landline because if someone wants to call you they can call your cell/mobile. Try to get off any minimum spend monthly contracts and get a prepaid deal instead. From now on you can make your landline and cellphone calls for totally free using google chat through a gmail account (this is only for US and Canadian citizens unfortunately!). I know it sounds too good to be true but If you don't believe me, look here.


Get Cozy With Some Friends ;)
If you are paying rent, how much does it cost you per month? How much would it save you to crash on a friend's couch for the last month before your big trip?

You could offer to cook or do housework or your time in exchange. Most people pay at least US/AU$150 per week in the Western world for rent to live somewhere not so special

Do you see that awesome picture above of beautiful warm clean beaches?

How much better would you feel to wake up to that every morning? You can find beds for just US$20 per night.

That means that crashing on a friend's couch for 1 month or even 1 week will let you have an extra month/week of waking up in that paradise!


Also, I wanted to mention  that occasionally I send out a unique newsletter with my secret and unique money saving tips, great deals on flights, and special locations unknown to the average tourist (at bargain prices). You really can travel on a super small budget to exotic locations if you have all the information the travel companies don't want you to know about!
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Haircuts
How often do you get your hair cut? Every month? Try finding a cheaper hairdresser/barber or go every second month instead. For the guys, have you ever thought of shaving your head completely and getting a friend to do it or doing it yourself? Shell out some cash for the machine and after that you have free haircuts for life!

For girls, there are usually a lot of technical colleges (TAFES) where hairdressing trainees are willing to give you a good haircut for a much cheaper price (a risk but maybe worth it :D )


Stop with the Water Bottles
The water bottle companies don't want you to know this, but the public water supply in most cities is much cleaner, much more regulated for quality control and much safer to drink than bottled water. Not to mention that the water from your tap is literally 10,000 times cheaper. So if you need to drink water on the go, better to buy yourself a clean metallic stainless steel bottle which you can reuse forever and fill from the tap! This is also something you can take with you to save money whilst you are traveling.

Disposable Razers 
A unique and almost hard to believe tip - this will save you a bundle. Did you know that you can re-use your disposable razor? (as long as it's not the super super cheap ones). Seriously. I got shown this and I couldn't believe it until I did it myself. The method is very simple - you get your razor blade and push it in the opposite direction of the blade - on your arm. You are pushing the blade backwards up your arm.

If you do this 20 times, the blade will be sharpened and you will really notice the difference. It won't feel absolutely brand new - but nearly!

Lentils
Don't know what they are? If you combine them with onions and some spices they are very tasty, and probably the most tasty, healthy and cheap product all in one that exists. Next time you are at your supermarket, ask for them. There are great recipes all over the web on how to cook them.

QUICK LINK: Top 5 Unique Tricks for Flying Cheap for the Hardcore Budget Traveler
 
Sell Your Junk
Have a good look at the things you own: clothes, books, TVs and other technology, furniture.
Chances are you only use 20% of all your possessions 80% of the time. Separate them into 3 piles - never use, barely use, and frequently use. Sell all of the never use, and as much as possible of the barely use pile on craigslist. The more you sell, the less you have to pay for storage costs. 


(Above) Beautiful, Unique Phuket in Thailand. Privates for just US$30 for two people, and dorms for as cheap as US$5Flickr nate2b


Forget Storage Costs
Obviously the most straightforward place to leave your things are with your parents or loved ones, but if that isn't an option, after you've done the above cleansing, you can break the items up into small groups and leave them with several friends. Use the money you save to go to some of the Top 10 Wildest Music Festivals Worldwide.


Is Your Money Working For You?

Do you believe your bank has your best interests at heart? 

Given the Wall Street scandals of the last few years (you know, where the CEOs of the big banks basically ran their companies into the ground and then asked for taxpayer funded handouts which they then used to pay themselves bonuses). It's not surpising that trust in banks is at a record low in the public eye.

With that in mind, it's a great time to look around and compare banks to make sure that you are getting the best deal for your savings / loans. One way to do that is to manually compare all the small print of all the deals - this might take you a lifetime however.


Your more efficient option is to use a program called planwise, which basically asks you a few questions about your financial situation and compares all (or most of) the financial institutions in the country and their deals and provides you with the best option according to your financial situation. This is really useful if you are planning a trip, planning on selling your car before your trip or any other major financial decision. As it says, it helps you make plans, understand the impact, and control your future finances. It's free and anonymous.

Speaking of controlling your finances, with the crazy fees and stupid risks the big banks are taking these days, I strongly recommend checking out the competition from the smaller banks. Not only can you save a lot of money on fees, but you can make sure you money is in a bank that doesn't take stupid risks. There's a great movement called MoveYourMoney, which has independently stress tested banks around the USA and rated them according to how safe/risky they are. Simply enter your ZIP code and away you go.


Become a Humanitarian Banker and Make Money

With all the evil coming out of Wall Street and the Banks these days, you could be forgiven for thinking that banks and bankers are only good at doing bad things to people. Read my article on Top 5 Travel Jobs to Help You Travel Forever to see how you can become a humanitarian banker, help someone out, and make money for your trip at the same time.

Why Should You Pay for the Privilege of Withdrawing Your Own Money Abroad?
It's not enough that these banks use our savings to make billions, but they have the audacity to charge us for the pleasure of accessing our own money! Forget them!

In the U.S. you can try Charles Schwab for fee free international banking and in Australia you can get the 28 degress Mastercard.


Cut Your Electricity and Water Costs
How much do you spend per month on electricity and water? Have a look at your latest bill. Chances are its around $80-$100 if you live the U.S.  Now cut that figure in half. Here is how:

> Charge your cell phone at work. Yes you read right, I know how it looks, but did you know that as little as $2 will buy you a very nice lunch in most Asian countries and even some Mediterranean ones like Greece (national dish is called Souvlaki for 2 euros).
> Your standard light bulbs are wasting 80% of the energy they are costing you to run them! Isn't that crazy? Invest in some energy efficient ones and see a huge drop in your costs. Moreover, once you're ready to leave your apartment for long term travel, these light bulbs have a life of around 5 years so why not sell them for free on craiglist and add some extra cash to your bottom line?
> Make your computer screen power down after 2 minutes of non usage.
> It's likely that the biggest consumer of energy in your house is your washing machine. Use your washing machine only at night. In some places, electricity companies charge you half price for using electricity during certain hours of the day. Contact your company and find out your options.
> Sell you drier on craigs list or at least stop using it whilst you are in your savings mode. It's incredibly expensive to run, destroys our earth, and is unnecessary.  Think about hanging your clothes on a fold away line or somewhere in your home.
> Buy a water saving shower head. Showers are the biggest consumers/wasters of water in a typical household.
> Instead of cranking up the heating or cooling, think about investing in insulation for your home. You can check out some good options here.
> Another great option that we seem to have forgotten these days is wearing less clothes when we are hot and more when we are cold. Some of us want to put in as little effort as possible and press a button and just make it good. How about taking off your jumper/sweater on a hot day before pushing a button?
> Do you own a desktop and a laptop? Think about selling the desktop or only using the laptop which uses far less energy than any desktop.
> Do you have the TV on in the background when you are doing something? Do you really need the noise? turn it off and enjoy some silence and save on your energy bill.
> Use a towel not a hairdryer.

(Above) Beautiful, Unique Phuket in Thailand. Privates for just US$30 for two people, and dorms for as cheap as US$5. Flickr dumbskull



(Above) Unrivaled - The Taj Mahal in Agra, India. Private Rooms with Double Beds and Bathroom as cheap as US$7 per night. Flickr Stuck in Customs

Don't Book Through Hostelworld.com
I don't like these guys. Why? because on top of the 10% deposit that you pay them to book a hostel (they keep it all, a dime doesn't go to the hostel itself), they charge an extra $2 booking fee on top of that - just to juice out as much as possible from you. That extra $2 will buy you 3 liters of beer in Bulgaria and let you do many other things. If you want to avoid the booking fee, I suggest using a free alternative like Hostelbookers instead.


Eating Cheap and Healthy
When I was saving up to leave my job and travel long term I sacrificed all of my luxuries and I began eating better and healthier. Gone were the daily lunch time trips to McDonalds and other junk food peddlers. I began bringing sandwich lunches from home, I saved major money every week, and I felt great! By the way, are you enjoying this article? Why not join me on Facebook and Twitter to be kept updated on all the latest tips and awesome travel deals?

Evaluate Your Weekly Travel Routine
Another awesome way I found of saving money when I was preparing to leave Australia was to evaluate my typical weekly travel routine, calculate how much it cost, and try to find cheaper alternatives. Most of my trips were to work, socialising and the supermarket. From that point on I began carpooling and sharing the fuel costs. I also began riding my bike a lot more! Once you do that you can think about...

Selling Your Car
Have you calculated how much it costs you per month to run this thing? including registration, taxes, insurance, fuel and not to mention the occasional trip to the mechanic who also has a good time "fixing" things that don't need fixing at your expense. It's not just killing the planet, it's killing the extra week you could be having relaxing on a warm beach in Thailand whilst receiving a $10, 30 minute massage* (*happy endings not included).


  (Above) Bali in Indonesia. Dorms from US$9 and Privates from US$18 per nightFlickr Bram &Vera


Getting a bit Extreme
Ok so now I might be making you a bit uncomfortable with this one, but hey I'm not here to just whisper sweet nothings into your ears so listen up. How much does it cost you to shower every day per month? Including the cost of shampoo, conditioner, shower gel etc. Have you thought about using less shampoo/conditioner or even buying some cheaper brands? You might end up only saving a little bit from this, but it may mean an extra couple of nights in one of the Top 5 Wildest Party Hostels on Earth.
 
Stop with Your Nonsense!
As my African housemate used to joke with me when I was living with her in eastern Europe. Before you buy anything between now and your trip (and I do mean anything - that cup of coffee, that doughnut, that cinema ticket, that crazy priced popcorn etc etc) think twice, and don't do it!

Slice Your Internet Costs
You've got 3 good options here, and each one depends on how hardcore you are prepared to be in saving money for your trip. Not Hardcore: Use a company like Saveology to shop around and make sure you have the cheapest internet access for your area. Slightly Hardcore: If you live close to some neighbours or even in an apartment block, why are you both paying for internet? Why not share the costs of the internet each month by having them give you their WiFi password? (and use saveology to find a good deal you can both share). Hardcore: Forget the internet and only use it for free at work and at the public library (your taxes are paying for it, so you may as well!).


Finding really creative ways to save your money is the way to live your dream. Don't just stop with these tips I've given you, apply this way of thinking to your daily life - do I really need that? Or do I just want it because of how it makes me feel? Apply this mode of thinking and you'll be able to afford several dream trips abroad! If you liked this article and want to keep in touch with all the latest tips and special offers, follow my blog on facebook.
Also, I wanted to mention  that occasionally I send out a unique newsletter with my secret and unique money saving tips, great deals on flights, and special locations unknown to the average tourist (at bargain prices). You really can travel on a super small budget to exotic locations if you have all the information the travel companies don't want you to know about!
             SIGN UP FOR FREE!