10 Ways To Save Money While Abroad

10 ways to save money while abroad, You're Making Memories, Not Breaking The Bank

Whether traveling, studying, or working- this is how you do it.

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This summer, I studied abroad in Prague for two months. While abroad, I traveled to seven other countries in Europe. Here's how I did it...

1. Compare prices of hostels and Airbnbs

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I found while traveling abroad, NO HOTEL gave me as good of a deal as hostels or Airbnbs. If you're traveling with a big group of people, you can usually book a 10 to 12 person hostel for all of you. Hey, it's not the most glamorous but it's kind of like one, big sleepover. If possible, try to have one person book the hostel for all of you together because you will save money on booking fees, key fees, and any other hidden fees. To compare prices of different hostels in the area you'll be staying, I recommend using Hostel World.

In some areas (especially if you're traveling with a group of people), it may be cheaper to book an Airbnb. If you're staying for more than 3-4 days, I would definitely recommend this since most Airbnbs have access to a kitchen and cooking supplies so you can make some of your own meals. Some hosts will even volunteer to take you around the city and show you local spots!

2. Book everything on Google Chrome Incognito browser

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This is EXTREMELY important. If your browser history is filled with visits to the same hotel, train, or plane booking sites, the next time you return to the website, you'll most likely see an increase in prices. If you don't have access to Google Chrome, make sure to clear both your browser history and cookies before booking anything travel related.

3. Prioritize where you want to go each place

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Before each trip, make (at least) an outline and research everything you want to do. That way, you can budget and make sure you have time for each activity. A mistake I ran into traveling was having a list of things I wanted to do, but not looking into them beforehand so I was shocked whenever I found out that going on the London Eye would cost me $30 and it was a 50-minute walk from my next destination.

4. Buy a phone or date plan

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This is especially important if you're traveling for over two weeks. The LAST thing you want to happen is receiving random data or phone charges upon your arrival to the US. So before leaving, research the different phone plans in each country you're visiting. If traveling throughout Europe, I recommend looking into Vodafone or Sprint. Immediately after arriving in Prague, I paid around $100 for a two-month 20 GB data and 2,000-minute calling plan (which is a lot cheaper than any amount you'd pay in international charges to AT&T or Verizon).

5. Try to avoid eating in the main city center

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I promise that you can find the same food you're looking for within a ten-minute walk from the main city center. When eating in the touristy areas, food prices are usually incredibly inflated. Besides, if you're looking for authentic food, it's going to be extremely Americanized and overpriced than anything you'll find that's a slightly further walk from the main attractions.

6. Pack efficiently

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This one may sound a little weird, but seriously! The last thing you want is a $75 overweight baggage fee both ways. Avoid bringing extra clothes, shoes, or jewelry- even if it's SUPER cute.

7. Book far in advance

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This again may seem (very) obvious, but there are some places or things that you wouldn't expect would go up in price when booking last minute. For example, when booking a train ride, hostel, or cab ride from the airport, these prices can inflate pretty drastically if you don't book at least 1.5 weeks in advance. That being said, it's always best to have everything booked before your trip, even if you think it won't matter that much.

8. Don't eat out every meal

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This one may seem obvious, but seriously! It's okay to not have an Instagram-worthy brunch every day. Go grocery shopping for some meals and cook if you have access to a kitchen. Having a picnic with friends in a park is a great way to save money (and also really fun).

9. Use Google Flights

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On an incognito browser, of course. But seriously, this is the perfect tool if you know you want to go somewhere, but you're not quite sure where. Using this tool, you can put in your departing airport, how long you want to stay, and Google Flights will show you a map of the different prices to various locations. That way if you're deciding between Barcelona or London for a weekend, this will make it an easier choice.

10. Capitalize on specials each place you want to go

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In each place you travel, there are bound to be a plethora of free events, classes, etc. CAPITALIZE ON THAT! Research different events happening in your city beforehand, and who knows, you may have more fun there than doing any paid activity. For activities or other things that cost money, make sure to look into any discounts or specials! For transportation, Go Euro offers different summer and travel passes so you pay a one time fee for traveling by train or bus instead of separate payments. For lodging, many places offer large group discounts or student discounts.

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Top 50 Things You'll Hear A Southern Say

Y'all.
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For those of you who may need a little help understanding the slang of a southern, I made a list of the top 50 phrases and sayings, along with their translations.

1. Bless your heart.

My favorite saying. It is an empathetic phrase that is usually uttered when the speaker believes the recipient to be sweet, but misguided or stupid. It can also be used if the speaker believes the recipient needs to grow up and deal with it, when the speaker says it in a sarcastic tone.

2. Barking up the wrong tree.

Means being misguided or mistaken.

3. Aren't you precious?

Mostly this saying is used in a sarcastic tone in response to someone being offensive.

4. Britches.

Pants or underpants.

An example would be, "Your britches are too short, you can't wear those".

5. Coke.

Regardless if it's Dr. Pepper, Coca-Cola, or another carbonated beverage, it's called Coke here in the South.

6. Fixin' to.

Simply means that you are about to do something.

7. Get the short end of the stick.

This phrase means that you basically got an unfair deal or cheated out of something.

8. Give Me Some Sugar.

Simply means give me a kiss.

9. Hissy Fit.

A hissy fit is a grown-up version of a temper tantrum that is as bad as one that a toddler would throw.

10. Hold Your Horses.

Be patient.

11. Holler.

When you say "holler" you are basically letting the other person know something.

Example: Holler at me when you are ready to get something to eat.

12. If the creek don't rise.

This saying simply means that if nothing bad happens, everything will go as planned.

13. You're as slow as molasses in the wintertime.

This phrase means that you are being EXTRA slow.

14. Muddin'.

Off-road four-wheeler riding with the intentions of getting mud everywhere and possibly losing control.

15. Skat Cat.

A phrase that can be used instead of saying "God bless you" when you sneeze.

16. There's Not A Pot Too Crooked That A Lid Won't Fit.

There is someone for everyone.

17. Pitcher.

We mostly mean a plastic container that holds sweet tea, not the position of a guy on the baseball team.

18. Reckon.

When you say "I reckon", you believe that something is true.

19. Hoot With The Owls, Soar With The Eagles.

This simple phrase means that if you are going to stay up all night, you should be able to get early in the morning.

20. Too Big For Your Britches.

Simply means that you take yourself too seriously.

21. Stompin' Grounds.

Your hometown or where you grew up.

22. Back In The Day.

Back in the day could be a month ago, a year ago, or 20 years ago.

23. You're A Spitting Image Of (Insert Family Member).

Yes, I know I'm a spitting image of my mother. "Spitting image" simply means that you look just like someone.

24. "Darlin, Sugar, Sweetheart"

These words are simply terms of endearment.

25. Buggy.

A buggy is a cart/basket at the grocery store.

Example: Who wants to push the buggy?

26. Quit Crying Or I Will Give You Something To Cry About.

This phrase simply means to quit crying and if you didn't then more than likely you got a spanking,

27. Where You Raised In A Barn?

If you are from the South, you have probably been asked this more than once, especially when you left a door open.

28. Close The Door. You Are Letting All The Good Air Out.

This southern heat is nothing to play with. It simply means to keep the door closed so the air (or heat if its winter) stays inside.

29. You Are Going To Make Me Lose My Religion.

When you say this phrase to someone, it more than likely means that person has done something to irritate you or made you mad. Thank goodness Jesus saves.

Example: You are going to make me lose my religion.

30. You Look Like A Chicken With Your Head Cut Off.

This is said when you are running around like a crazy person. It can be said if you are looking for something that you are searching for or if you are just really busy.

31. Y'all.

The southern way to say "you all".

32. You Can't Carry A Tune In A Bucket.

If you've ever been told this, it means that you can't sing.

33. Have Their Feathers Ruffled.

You normally have your "feathers ruffled" when you are pouting.

34. Two Peas In A Pod.

When you and someone else are "two peas in a pod", it means that either you almost always together or that you two are almost identical in the way you think and do things.

35. Well Butter My Butt And Call Me A Biscuit.

This saying can be used when you are surprised or excited.

36. Don't Let The Door Hit Ya Where The Good Lord Split Ya.

When someone say this they typically mean to get out and don't let the door hit you on the way out.

37. You're As Good As Gold.

When you are "as good as gold", it means that you are well-behaved and obedient.

38. It's Raining Cats And Dogs Out There.

This simply means that the rain is really coming down hard. It's not actually raining cats and dogs, people.

39. I'm Full As A Tick.

This phrase means that you ate too much food.

40. I'm Sweating More Than A Sinner In Church.

When someone says this, it means that they are really hot and sweating A LOT.

41. Pot Calling The Kettle Black.

This phrase is used when one person is guilty of the very same thing of which they accuse another person.

42. There's More Than One Way To Skin A Cat.

It means that there is anyways more than one way to fix something.

43. Shut Yo' Mouth.

Means to be quiet or hush up.

44. Whatever Floats Your Boat.

This saying means to do whatever you want to do.

45. Slap Yo' Momma.

This phrase means that something is good.

Example: This BBQ is slap yo' momma good.

46. She's Like A Bull In A China Shop.

When you tell someone this phrase, you are telling them that they are clumsy or careless in the way that they move.

47. Cuttin' A Rug.

Cuttin' a rug is used to describe dancing.

Example: Let's go cut a rug tonight.

48. Clicker.

A clicker is another name for a TV remote.

49. Slow Your Roll.

This also means to be patient.

50. You're A Hot Mess.

When you tell someone that they are a "hot mess", you are simply telling them that they don't have it together.

Cover Image Credit: silhouetteamerica.com

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5 Vital And Helpful Tips I Live By When Packing For A Trip

Try and pack smarter, not harder.

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If you are anything like me, you tend to overpack thinking you are being a great packer and being ready for any scenario that life may throw at you. Well, that is, unfortunately untrue, and I have learned that you are only doing more harm than good. Over the years, I have come up with five tips I always use when traveling and have been proven to work. You've heard of the five golden rules of life, and, well, these are the five golden rules/tips of packing.


1. Start with a packing list.

This is the best tip I could give to anyone else who is getting ready to travel. Making a list is very useful, especially when stressed about your travel. You will not forget anything because you have it all written down. A packing list is a great way to keep organized when packing.

2. Use space bags.

Now, this is a tip my dad lives by. Space bags are great when you are packing because it protects your clothes and makes room to put a lot in your suitcase. The crazy story of a time when my dad was traveling, and his friend's bag was soaked with the shampoo he brought on the plane. All his clothes and everything inside the suitcase was ruined. So always use space bags because you never know what could happen on the flight. You can buy a space bag here.

3. Pack the essentials first.

I will be honest and say that I do over-pack a lot. I use the line "just in case" as an excuse to pack my entire house. But I have learned that packing for "just in case" is a waste of time. When you first sit down to pack, lay out all your essentials. For example, clothes that you will wear during the trip. You will be surprised to see how effective it is.

SEE ALSO: 10 Reasons Chicago Is The Best City In The World

4. ALWAYS pack an extra outfit in your carry on.

This tip is one that I have been very grateful that I used. A while ago during my trip to Canada, my check-in bag was missing and delayed for multiple hours. Luckily I had an extra outfit to keep me fresh and not feel gross. It is always crucial to this in your carry on In case of emergencies such as your bag getting lost.

5. Put identification on your suitcase.

Everyone in the airport somehow tends to have the same black or red suitcase that you have, which only means confusing when you're trying to find your check-in bag. To quickly identify your suitcase, put a sticker, or tie a ribbon on the handle. You can easily pick up your suitcase and leave. This will prevent any sneaky people trying to steal or claim that your suitcase is theirs.

P.S.: Use a bright color ribbon or a different sticker. Also, tie the ribbon properly to make sure it's secured.


I live by these five packing tips every time I travel so I hope you can use them the next time you take a trip!

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