Ways to make that mid-year Eurotrip happen when you’re broke AF
Remember that feeling last year when your social media blew up with people bragging about their awesome travel adventures? If you don’t want to experience the same FOMO feels again this year, it might be time to consider that Eurotrip for yourself. If your biggest concern about a Europe escape is the cost, here’s some ways to ensure you can afford it, even if you’re broke AF.
Put aside cashola that you can’t touch
The hardest part is saving enough moula to be in a position where you won’t need to call your parents up begging for money. It’s important to do a rough estimate of how much you think you’ll spend, taking into account everything from flights, to accommodation, to daily food and shopping. Once you get that ballpark figure, figure out how much you need to set aside each week until the day you leave and actually do it.
Sometimes it’s easier said than done when there’s an ASOS sale every second week. If you actually can’t trust yourself, send your weekly saving to your parents to hold on to it for you. The money will rack up in no time and you’ll have no temptation to spend it if you can’t see it. Some banks will also have accounts where you’ll incur a fee every time you withdraw, so you won’t be tempted to take money out on the reg.
Set notifications to ping you when flights are on sale
The worst feeling is buying flights and seeing them go on sale a week later. Websites like Skyscanner have email notifications that let you know when flight prices drop across all different airlines, and you can often set up notifications on airline websites for more accurate results. If you don’t mind being a bit of a risk-taker, flights tend to have sales closer to the date when seats haven’t sold. Instead of opting for the cheap dodgy airline, you might have a chance to fly with the more luxe airlines if you wait for the sale.
Don’t get sucked into thinking you need to buy exxy things to enjoy the travel experience
Put down that expensive camera, you don’t need it. Your iPhone takes perfectly good photos and it won’t be an effort to carry it around. You also don’t need to buy a whole new wardrobe – we know there will be a lot of photos taken, but you don’t need that new striped top and felt hat to complete your Paris Eiffel tower photos. Trust us, people will be jealous of your trip regardless of what you’re wearing.
Choose flights out of peak time
Seeing as you'll want to travel in your mid-year break to allow enough time, you can’t avoid the peak travel time of heading into a European summer. But since you’re a student, you can most definitely avoid the exxy times that all the full-time chums will be fighting over. If possible, avoid flights on Thursday through to Sunday – particularly late night flights on Friday. It's not always guranteed to be more expensive, but generally your best bet for cheap flights is Monday through to Thursday.
Consider cheaper, alternative destinations
You might have your heart set on Switzerland, Iceland and Norway, but they also happen to be some of the most expensive European cities where your dollar won’t go as far. Although you might have some of the standard destinations in mind that you can’t miss, like England and France, explore Eastern Europe if you're looking for cheaper travel.
Countries like Bulgaria, Poland, Hungary and Czech Republic are not only cheap for food, drinks and accommodation, but they’ll also offer a totally different cultural experience than you’d get from somewhere like England. The trains between these countries will also be way cheaper than your standard Eurorail, if you’re looking for a cheaper way to travel.