1. Get a Job – The most obvious way to earn money! Once you have a job take as much overtime as you can, be willing to cover peoples shifts and put some of your wages aside each pay day. Working through the evenings and weekends when your friends are having fun won’t be easy but keep imagining the end goal, and there’s the added bonus that whilst you’re working you can’t spend money!
2. Plan and Book Early – There are many perks to planning your trip in plenty of time, including time to save, taking advantage of cheaper flights and shopping around for the best deals on rucksacks, walking boots etc. If you are joining an overseas project, it is worth securing your place with deposit early so that you can pay the project price in small instalments making it far easier to manage financially!
3. Make a Weekly Budget – and stick to it! It’s easy to overspend when you’re not consciously thinking about it so work out how much you can realistically get by with each week and (including rent, food, bills and petrol) and put it aside each Monday. Taking it out in cash at the beginning of each week is also a good trick as it’s much easier to visualise how much money you are actually spending, and have left for the week!
4. Grants – Look at travel grants at your school or university as many offer travel or volunteer grants for trips that are beneficial to your personal development and future career prospects. These tend to be pretty badly advertised so it is worth speaking with your careers advisor to see if there’s anything you can take advantage of, and often all you need to do in return is write a short essay on what an amazing time you had!
5. Cut Out Luxuries – Whether it’s spending money down the pub, on clothes or either grabbing a daily coffee, it doesn’t seem like a lot of money at the time but certainly adds up, try working out how much you spend over a week, month and even a year and you’ll be surprised at how much money is wasted. It’s also a good idea to work out how much a meal or a night in hostel will cost you in the destination that you are visiting and remember that each time you go to buy something you really don’t need. Cut down on these non essentials and you’ll be in your dream destination in no time!
6. Fundraise – You will be surprised at how quickly you can raise money for your trip through sponsored bike rides, fundraising events or even cake sales! Especially if you are planning on volunteering overseas people will be happy to donate to a good cause.
7. Stay In – Everyone likes going out for a nice meal or meeting friends at the pub, but this is this easiest way that money disappears. Not to mention the fact that the more the drink flows the more we lose track of what we’re spending and I think we’ve all experienced the nervous feeling of checking your bank statement the following morning! Instead why not plan social nights in with your friends, cook a meal together, hold a poker night or just chill out and watch films.
8. Sell Your Stuff – They won’t fit in your rucksack anyway! You will surprised at how quickly you can get used to living off just what you can carry on your back, and when you return home an enlightened, new person chances are you won’t want your old clobber anyway.
9. Gifts – At Christmas and birthdays ask your friends and family to put money that they would have spent on a present towards your trip (let’s face it you don’t need anymore socks or bath salts anyway!). If they would rather buy a gift ask for useful travel items, such as a sleeping bag or mosquito net, more often than not they will be glad to help contribute towards your once in a lifetime trip!