Is there any greater joy in life than travel? The chance to explore new and exciting destinations, meet new people and experience other cultures can enrich your worldview, as well as make some incredible memories. If you often get travel envy as you scroll through your Instagram feed or flick through Condé Nast Traveller at the dentist’s office, you’re not alone. If you’ve had a taste of travel, your itchy feet can soon become problematic.
Image Credit: Pxhere under Creative Commons
The issue that holds many people back from travelling, of course, is money. Your 20s are the optimal time for you to go travelling, with your career still ahead of you and real life commitments like marriage and family still far away in the distance. However, the pressure to work hard and play hard means that travel dreams can stay just that, dreams, while you struggle to adjust to city living, let alone pack your bags and jet off.
They say that you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it, so if it’s travelling that’s on your mind - it’s time to go for it. Take a look at some of the following advice for funding travel in your 20s.
Make a plan
Reaching your goals is easier to do when you’ve got a plan in place. Map out where you’re going, when you want to go and how long you want to go. Having that end goal in place will keep you motivated to save during the tough times, and ensure that you have something to work towards. Many of us live for the weekend, but working to explore the world seems like a good alternative.
Pay off your debts
Going travelling with a mountain of debt is not the most sensible way to start your adventure. Money worries will follow you wherever you go, even if it is on a beach in Thailand. Clearing your debts will help you feel more confident when setting off, and the practice of not spending all of your money as it comes in will teach you some valuable savings habits.
There are some great tips out there to help you pay off your debts, while many credit checker tools include tips and advice for reducing your debt while improving your credit score. With some sensible card spending, you could start building up your credit score right now! It might take some time to get you to a stage where you are debt-free, but it will be worth it to enjoy stress-free travelling.
Start your travel savings budget
If you’re serious about going travelling, then it’s time to get serious about your spending. A budget is going to be the easiest way to scrimp and save every penny, and will stop you spending all of your money down the pub every weekend. A budget for beginners is just what you need to get started.
Your budget might require you to make some sacrifices, but they will all be worth it to help you get on that plane. Who needs a £50-a-month underused gym membership when you can work out at home for free? Do you need your TV package when all you do is watch Netflix anyway? Making these little cuts will add a lot to your savings, without you even realising - so what’s a little short-term pain for long-term gain?
Get side hustling
Ever heard of a side hustle? A side hustle is a sideline that lets you make money. If you ask around your friends and colleagues, you’ll find that many of them have side hustles that provide a boost to their income.
Starting a side hustle to help you fund your travels is a great idea to help you make those savings quicker. There are some easy side hustles for millennials, for example, that you can start today to start bringing in some extra cash. From tutoring to blogging, there are a lot of ways you can make some more money if you’re willing to put the time in.
If the thought of saving up for years to be able to travel doesn’t really appeal, then the fast-track option is to work abroad. Prospects has some amazing advice on working in different countries to help you find your perfect match. If you’re happy to stay in one place for a longer period, then working in a bar or other type of casual job can help you fund your basic living expenses while still enabling you to travel around and enjoy the local area.
Work on the move
If staying in one place isn’t what you dreamed of when you said you want to go travelling, then your other option is to work on the move. The ‘digital nomad’ lifestyle involves working remotely from anywhere in the world, allowing you to hop from destination to destination doing work like copywriting or design. You could spend each week in a different country, working to cover your expenses without being tied to one location.
Do your travel plans have to be long-term?
Going travelling doesn’t have to mean setting off for months on end with your backpack on a list of trendy destinations to get to. You can still enjoy travel by embracing shorter breaks and ticking off some of the world’s most exciting destinations from your bucket list. A week spent in Italy will expose you to some incredible experiences, and you’ll get there much quicker too. If you’re trying to cure those itchy feet then setting off on shorter breaks could be just what you need.
While there’s no denying that travel doesn’t offer up some incredible experiences, it’s not always possible for everyone at this moment in time. If you’re determined to set off, however, then find a way to make it work. There are plenty of ways to fund your travel in your 20s, so make a plan now and say hello to those new adventures.
This is a contributed post.