Hotels and Airbnbs are often the more expensive parts of travel. Being able to eliminate these costs could open up options on destinations as well as how much time you are able to spend abroad. With a little creativity and planning, here are a few ways that you can travel across the globe without the hefty price tag of accommodations.
House swapping is exactly how it sounds, you temporarily swap homes with someone in another location as a form of currency. A quick online search will provide you with a few options for home swapping programs to get you started. One option is Love Home Swap. This service has been facilitating home swaps since 2011 and showcases 75,000 properties in over 160 countries. It’s simple to use, with users choosing their destination country and a home they want to stay in, then making the swap either directly or through the site’s Swap Points system. Love Home Swap offers a 14-day free trial to test out the service before committing to an annual membership fee.
Home Or Pet Sitting
There are a number of very good house sitting websites available that will match house sitters with home and pet owners. If you enjoy taking care of pets or don’t mind having to do some light housekeeping during your vacation, this could be a great option. TrustedHousesitters is one of the most popular options. There is an annual membership fee to participate, but with a large global community and trusted customer service team, this platform offers travelers the most secure and varied option.
Lingo is a language exchange program that allows travelers interested in learning a new language the chance to stay in a home for free or at a low-cost where you can learn the local language in exchange for you teaching your host family your native language. According to the website, “Lingoo offers authentic language holidays for children, teenagers, family groups and adults of all ages through language exchanges, homestays and one-to-one language tutors. By staying with a friendly host family or language teacher, you, your child or small family group, can eat sleep and breathe a new language and culture.”
If you love nature, organic living, and gardening, then check you WWOOF, one of the world’s first voluntourism and ecotourism organizations that exists in 132 countries. WorldWide Opportunities on Organic Farms, USA (WWOOF™ USA) is part of a worldwide effort to link visitors with organic farmers, promote an educational exchange, and build a global community conscious of ecological farming practices. In short, you can stay on a working farm for free in exchange for your hands-on contribution to the farm or garden.
Work In A Hostel
Most hostels employ a mixture of permanent, long-term staff and temporary, short-term volunteers on a work-to-stay arrangement. If you like the sound of this option, be sure that you are ok with doing a variety of on-site work, ranging from reception duties and cleaning, to bartending and decorating. Most times, you are expected to only work for 3 – 4 hours a day allowing you plenty of time to explore and have fun. In exchange for your labor, you’ll get a bed and often food and drinks as well.