Usually this is something people do or would like to do after college. I found through blogs and forums, that one of the biggest regret people have is they didn't travel enough. Which is terrible because taking a semester or spending the summer abroad can teach you way more about yourself and life than a bio-physics class ever could. However it's unfortunate that most people don't take time to travel solely because they believe they can't afford it.
Lies! There are plenty of people taking time of from work or who are working jobs abroad to fulfill that so important life goal. They all utilize these tips and even more, in order to share the human experience.
1. Pack Light
Often stated and just as often disregarded. Packing light is the easiest way to save money on the initial travel. Checking baggage is one of the easier and most common ways airlines make extra money. If you're in the states and traveling domestically. There's really no reason to check a bag. Just pack some quality versatile peace's that wear well.
2. Pack A Minimalist Wardrobe
Something that's easier said than done but once you have it down it's a no brainer. I have specific pieces That are my go-to for travel. One of them is a MIAMI beach bag that serves as luggage. I honestly got it from at a tourist trap on SoBe but I've had it for years! In it I usually pack a good pair of jeans my north face Tri-Climate, a two in one jacket that's good for cold or rain, and a string pair of boots.
3. Window Shop Tourist Areas
Aside from getting that bag in South Beach I usually don't entertain tourist stops because they are traps for your money. They sell postcards and T-Shirts that are supposed to encapsulate the memory but they fall way short of the real thing. If throughout your adventures you come across location specific trinkets then yes! Treasure these because they won't be found at a gift shop by the hotel.
4. Make Friends With The Locals
Want to experience the best the city has to offer? Ask the locals. They know all the spots to visit, make sure you ask where they would go and not where they recommend because they'll recommend tourist traps. Also it's a great way to get to practice the language.
5. Learn The Native Language
While traveling I've noticed that people love when visitors attempt to speak the local tongue. It's a sign of respect and they'll reward you with a smile for trying. If you're lucky you'll find a closeted English speaker willing to practice with you. It helps you develop a deeper connection with the people which leads to favorable outcomes.
6. Cancel or Pause Subscriptions
Subscriptions are pretty insidious when you think about it. They're a small monthly charge that's easily forgotten about until you check your account and see that $50 just cleared. Audible, Netflix, Hulu, just pause them until you get back. Those $50 bucks will come in handy for booking lodging.
7. Book Hostels
This is something to take advantage of while your young or traveling solo. Hostels are great places to stay while traveling. Meet people who are sharing the same experience and create lifelong friendships. When you're older and traveling with family, they aren't such great options.
8. Eat Street Food
Save money and eat deliciously. Street food is made by locals for locals. Those who are coming home from work tired and hungry. So the food is delicious and filling. It also comes at a hefty price cut because, unlike going to a restaurant, street food vendors have less overhead and they transfer those savings to the customers.
One thing they don't sacrifice on is taste. Street vendors tend to work in groups, which means they're all fighting for the same customers. To keep the lines moving they have to blast the flavor consistently which means cheap flavorful eats time after time.
9. Work Part Time Locally
One of the greatest ways to immerse yourself in a culture is to become a part of it. As scary as it may be, there are amazing opportunities to work abroad and online that would facilitate your travel plans. It can be as basic as formal as teaching English abroad to working in a farm or for a small business in exchange for lodging.
10. Avoid All-Inclusive Anything
All inclusive resorts, festivals and events have a tendency to be a vacuum. They try and stuff as many tourists as they can in one place and charged them exuberant prices for access. What's the point in traveling if your going to spend time in a place designed to cater to western tourists. There's nothing unique about an open bar folks.
BONUS: Explore Wildly
Walk everywhere, take it all in and get lots of pictures (shameless selfies welcome). Few things will be of better use of your time abroad then making a point to explore your surroundings as much as possible. I mean you didn't travel to be cooped up in a hotel room all day, or lounge around on the beach your whole stay. At least you shouldn't.
Heading out for a hike, walking tour or visiting markets is a great way to bask in the culture of your destination. Chances are there are plenty of hotels and probably water where your from, so why focus on the same familiar experiences when there is literally a whole world out there for you to explore.