“I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” – Susan Sontag
Do you believe that it’s expensive to travel? Have you ever excitedly looked over a glossy brochure of your dream vacation, only to discover that it will cost you thousands and thousands of dollars for a single 10 day vacation?
If this has happened to you, I can understand. I too would dream about traveling the world, but get disenhearted when I saw those expensive price tags placed on travel.
But I have learned that travel is NOT expensive. You see, travel agencies want you to believe that it costs a LOT of money to travel. That way they can jack-up the prices of tours to earn a bigger commission for themselves. They want you to think that you must have money, a lot of money, to be able to travel.
This kind of thinking does not help the majority of us. It distances us from our dreams.
A fact that most people don’t realize, is that world travel can be down-right cheap. It can actually be cheaper, a lot cheaper, than staying at home.
It amuses me that travel agencies try to SELL travel. They try to get you to pay for things that you can do all by yourself. They don’t want you to know this, but –
You Don’t Need Them.
What do people do when they travel anyway? They get a place to sleep, eat, use transportation systems and spend money on entertainment and a few miscellaneous things like laundry, clothes and souvenirs.
What do you do at home? You pay the rent, buy your food (and sometimes go out to eat), you drive or use the bus, and you spend money on entertainment and a few miscellaneous things like cable and utilities.
Travel costs are really the same damn thing as staying at home; the big difference is that you’ll be seeing and doing a lot of different things.
Let me ask you this: If I were to offer you a place to stay in your home-town, meals, entertainment for you of my choosing, and have a strictly scheduled shuttle-bus that takes you where I want you to go and when, and I’ll only charge you $10,000 a month for the BASIC package, would you accept it?
Not only would you not accept it, but you’d
LAUGH IN MY FACE!
So why do travelers consistently do this very-same thing? Why do they pay travel agencies a ton of money for the very things they can do all by themselves, for a lot cheaper, and for a lot more freedom and flexibility?
World travel is not expensive at all if you know how to do it. You can travel the world for about $1,000 a month; that’s only about $33 a day.
How much do you spend on a normal day at home?
Here is an example of a single-person’s average monthly expenses in the United States (this is a modest estimate):
Rent: $800 a month
Transportation (gas, insurance): $400
Utilities (phone, internet, electricity, water, cable): $300
Misc. (clothes, gifts, doctor bills): $400
Now let’s sum-up the average monthly costs of world travel (when you know how to do it):
Misc. (internet cafes, souvenirs, clothes): $50
Let’s break this down by day:
Daily total: $33.34 USD
World travel costs less than staying at home, and offers a lot more freedom.
I’m sure you’re thinking that I am grossly under-estimating travel costs. But actually, the expenses above can be a LOT cheaper.
Did you know that in some countries you can book a three- star hotel for $10? Or that you can get comfortable accommodation for as low as $0.50 to $6.00 per night? Are you aware of the tens of thousands of people across the globe that invite travelers to stay at their homes – for free?
How about food? Full-blown buffets are offered for $0.50. Lunches with soup, the main course, a soda and dessert can be had for $1.50. Some companies will even pay you to dine at their restaurants!
Transportation? How about taxis that go anywhere in the city for $2. Inter-country buses for $20 to $50. Or international flights at 80% off?
By balancing your travels with expensive countries and cheap countries, your average travel costs can be just $1,000 a month or less.
Remember, people actually live in the countries that are foreign to you. In some countries the average monthly wage is only $150 – but it is enough to live on.
If they’re not paying thousands and thousands of dollars a month to be where they are, then why should you?
In many places, with just $1,000 a month to spend, far from living like a pauper, you’ll be living like a king.