I am always asked how I afford to travel the way I do. The answer… prioritising, discipline and planning.
I believe people are under the impression that travelling is only for the rich. Many people have this idea that they need to be earning more than $1000AUD a week to afford a yearly holiday. That belief is so far from the truth and it is honestly just used as an excuse by many people. Being able to afford something depends entirely on how it is ranked on your list of priorities. If you see materialism and ownership above seeing the world, you will never be able to afford travel.
My job in Italy covers basic essentials – accommodation and food. On top of that, I receive 10€ a day. Yeah, that’s right – probably a lot less than your own personal discretionary income.
I could choose to spend my money on eating out at nice restaurants, drinking cocktails at a bar every weekend, or shopping for the latest trends, while I’m home in Italy. But I don’t. Instead, I choose not to indulge in unnecessary luxuries and put my money towards travel. I only use what I have and what I need.
I don’t own 3 different cleansers, I own one – and when that runs out, I’ll buy a new one.
I don’t own 5 different pairs of jeans, I own one – and I’ll wear them until I can’t anymore, and when that happens I’ll buy a new pair.
I don’t own 10 different lip liners, I own one – and when it runs out, I’ll buy a new one.
It’s about replacing instead of adding.
This aspect is the largest contributor to affording travel. It doesn’t mean that you have to miss out on everything when you’re not on holiday, but it does require you to be smart about how you spend your money. It is the only way I’ve been able to afford travel on such a low influx of cash.
Travel doesn’t need to be expensive. Some of my most ‘luxurious’ holidays have also been the cheapest. It all comes down to how much time and effort you’re willing to dedicate to researching and planning. It’s not booking the first thing you see, but comparing it across many platforms; it’s not paying for the most convenient option, but assessing all your choices; it’s not settling for the advertised price, but negotiating when appropriate. Travel doesn’t need to be expensive if you don’t want it to.
The way our life unfolds depends entirely on how we view it and the actions we take to achieve it. Remember, you are your greatest hindrance.