How to Travel Around the World on a Budget

By: Adrien Brody

Traveling, too, need not be outrageously expensive. If you are willing to spend a little more time getting to your destination, you can save a lot more money.

Plane flights now can be quite inexpensive. By filling planes that are not full and putting people on flights with layovers, Priceline.com does indeed allow you to name an inexpensive price for plane flights as well as hotel rooms. No-frills carriers like Southwest and United Express are pretty cheap, and ticket brokers sell discounted airline flights.

If you are really adventurous, you can become an air courier. Large companies ship packages every day around the world, and they require someone to accompany the package. That person is you, the air courier. As a courier, you can fly to Europe, Asia, South America, almost anywhere, and do so at a heavy discount. Whereas a flight from New York to Oslo might cost $2,000 roundtrip, on a courier flight it might be $395.

Sometimes, in a pinch, it can be free. Pick up a book on air courier travel, and you are off. The downside is that you usually don't get to choose how long you can stay abroad, and bringing the kids along is impossible.

Other ways to save on airfare include:

- Travel during off-peak times of year.

- Travel Monday through Thursday instead of over a weekend. Cultural events in most cities are practically free during the week.

- Fly standby.

- Give up your seat on an overbooked flight and get a free voucher. Get a free flight anywhere in the country for being so reasonable, and use
exchangable ticket on a flight you will use later in the year.

- If necessary, use compassion fares. Airlines offer discounted bereavement fares if you can show proof of death and explain your relationship to the deceased.

Once you get to your destination, you can save even more money. Go to the local Chamber of Commerce and get a tourist kit; inside will be discounts and lots of great offers. Traveling by bus or subway saves money, and if you will be there for awhile, consider getting a bus pass.

Lodging can be very expensive or very cheap. If you are going to travel overseas, you can exchange homes with a family in the country you are going to. You can rent an apartment instead of staying in a hotel. You can stay in a discount motel instead of a hotel. You can stay in a college dorm instead of a motel. You can camp.

Be sure to use any discounts available to you. Seniors are offered discounts on car rentals, airline tickets, lodging, admissions, mass transit, and restaurants. Other groups that are often offered similar discounts are members of the military, students, auto club members, and union members.

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