Backpacking is all about travelling cheaply and cheerfully, and having an incredible and authentic experience.
However, though at first it might sound like the cheapest option, it doesn’t always work out that way. Therefore it’s a good idea to go with a few tricks up your sleeve so you can backpack without breaking the bank.
Don’t assume you have to spend a fortune on the gear
You’ll need things like a really good, strong and sturdy rucksack, and some really comfortable and sensible walking shoes, but whilst they need to be reliable; they don’t need to cost you the earth. Check out this great article about putting together a backpacking kit under a certain budget for some tips and inspiration.
Research the best countries to do it in
In most cases, the amount of cash you spend will be down to living costs in the country you’re travelling in or through. Therefore, if you’ve got a strict, small budget in mind, why not adapt where you’re going to fit in with this? This will be miles better than going somewhere you’d planned to originally, but not really being able to afford to explore it properly. There’s a great article here with 25 ideas for cheap countries to backpack in 2018 that’s well worth a read.
Look into some other great travel options for certain areas
If you don’t fancy slumming it the entire time, or would like to have a slightly different experience for part of your journey, you could look into options from the likes of https://www.blacklane.com/en. They’re a car hire company across the globe that offer affordable solutions for vehicle hire for an allocated time. It almost always works out cheaper than things like train fares, too!
Pack lightly and efficiently
Packing light is not only great for keeping up your strength (who wants to lug a massive, heavy bag around with them 24/7?!) but it will also be good for preserving the funds. After all, if you’re getting on planes, you don’t want to have to pay for extra luggage allowances thanks to having a bag that’s over the limit, weight wise. Only pack the things you know you’ll use 100%.
Look into cheap (or free!) accommodation options
There are countless sites out there at your fingertips that will open up a world of cheap or free accommodation options to you, from staying on people’s sofas to renting out a room in their home for a number of nights. These sorts of options will always be cheaper than a hotel and will more often than not give you a much richer, authentic experience, too.
Shop at supermarkets
Avoid eating out at restaurants and cafes, and instead head to local supermarkets to get your grub. You can take a picnic in a park or just a general nice spot for a different view of your temporary home.