Indeed, everyone has different reasons for embarking on a journey. While some people simply want a chance to see the world, some people travel so that they could take a break from their hectic daily life. However, regardless of your motive for traveling, you always have to plan ahead. And one of the most important plans you need to make is that of accommodation. Many sometimes have to pay through their noses to find the perfect lodging, while those that are on a tight-budget either have to get creative or end up canceling their trips. Such is the significance of accommodation cost. Since you will need a place to rest your head every night, reducing your accommodation cost can help you reduce your overall traveling cost. Hence, not only do you need to find cheap flights to your destination – if you don’t want your traveling expenses to drill a hole in your wallet – but you also have to find inexpensive accommodation or cheap hotel booking. Luckily for you, there are many ways to find budget-friendly accommodation. Some of them are discussed in detail below.
A good example of a hospitality exchange system is Couchsurfing, which is a very effective way to save money. If you don’t really want to spend so much on accommodation, you can try to couchsurf. This type of accommodation is perfect for those that are traveling for business, tourism, and adventure purposes. It is free and easy to get. A hospitality exchange allows you to stay with a local while also experiencing the local culture of the country by staying and interacting with a local. There are many websites on the internet that can make this happen like Couchsurfing, Hospitality Club, and Global Freeloaders. Many of them will tee you up with an ideal local before you arrive at your destination. However, when looking for a Couchsurfing host, be sure to look out for the following criteria.
• That the host has a picture and profile – this is meant to show that the host is indeed a real person.
• The profile has to be filled out – this shows that the host is indeed interested and involved.
• They should have reviews – The more positive reviews, the better. This is a great way to know the experiences of people who had stayed with the host in the past.
• Check verification – Check whether or not the host is verified.
Stay in hostels
Hostels are another ideal option for budget travelers. Just like you have in a regular hostel, the rooms are dormitory-style, where all the facilities are shared. Many people often communize hostels because of the myth that they are dirty and designed for young people. In fact, many hostels offer more amenities than some low-star hotels. Many of these hostels come with comfy bathrooms, bars, lockers, tour desks, and free wifi.
Stay in home exchanges
Home exchange is another ideal accommodation system that works well for travelers who already have a home in their home country. Home exchange programs have been around for quite some time now and are starting to grow increasingly popular thanks to the internet. In simple terms, home exchanges involve swapping your home with another traveler/family from another country for a set amount of time. Most people who don’t do home exchanges claim it’s because of home maintenance and security worries. But what these people forget is that the other family trusts you with their home too. Sites that handle home exchanges are very similar to Couchsurfing in that they verify the participating parties and ensure everything runs smoothly.
However, if you don't like a home exchange, you can try home-sitting. Home-sitting involves cleaning, maintaining, and watching a home while the owner is away, and in exchange, you get a place to stay in the area you are visiting.
Stay in Airbnb
Another fantastic alternative to the home exchange system is the Airbnb. In this system, rentals allow travelers to stay in already furnished apartments at a very low price. These apartments, which are a nice bridge between hotels and hostels, offer many amazing amenities to make your stay comfortable. But beware; Airbnb can get a bit expensive when you are a solo traveler.
Look into volunteering programs abroad
Volunteering is a way to give back to society while also realizing your travel dreams in the process. Hence, it is a win-win situation for both parties. There are so many volunteer programs and causes abroad, so you are sure to find something that works for your skills and abilities. Volunteering is a cost-effective way to fulfill your travel dreams while also getting to show the world what you've got. In most cases, you are sure to find something that works well for the skills you’ve got.
If you are a fan of monks and nuns, monasteries can be a good option for you. However, accommodation in most monasteries is often Spartan, offering not more than a desk and bed, with simple meals prepared by the nuns and monks. On the bright side, monasteries are wonderfully quiet and family-friendly.