Do you feel like the only thing stopping you from a nice holiday is your budget? Everyone deserves some time off, preferably spent lying next to a body of water and not stressing about money. Here are some of the cheapest ways to spend less on your trip, break-even on your expenses or even make money while you’re travelling:
The deal: Swap your house for someone else’s, anywhere in the world
The catch: You have to have a swap-worthy house yourself
Besides your flights, accommodation is a huge blow to your travel budget. You could head somewhere in any part of the world and stay in a house for no cost at all, provided you’re willing to let someone stay in your house in exchange. Home Exchange is the most reputable online house swapping service. You sign up, create a profile for your house then get browsing for homes you’d like to stay in. Once you’ve chosen somewhere you let the home owner know you’re interested and hope that they are keen to have a holiday in your house too. If you are looking to travel locally then House Swap caters specifically for South Africans. Feeling skeptical? Read about this South African couple who regularly swap out their Sea Point spot for free accommodation in places like Berlin, New York and more.
The deal: Swap paying for a flight for paying for a full tank of petrol
The catch: You’ll have to keep your travels relatively local (also you need a car)
You don’t need a fancy caravan to live your best road trip life; you just need any four wheels. If you live in South Africa you’re never more than a few hours drive away from a beautiful and scenic holiday destination. A road trip is the perfect excuse to make a playlist and see sides of the country you’ve never seen. Excellent when done with friends (you can reenact the best bits of Crossroads) and extremely romantic when done with bae. Stop off at cute and cheap BnBs along your way or if you’re super broke you can go camping.
The deal: Get free accommodation in exchange for looking after someone’s house and pet
The catch: Must love dogs (or animals in general)
Trusted Housesitters is a service for animal lovers and animal owners to scratch each other’s backs. People who need someone to watch over their house and feed their pets while they’re away put their property up on the site then you (the animal lover) can browse the properties to see if any suit your needs. From looking after a small farm in Hawaii to feeding a cat in an Edinburgh home the opportunities are varied and pretty cool.
The deal: Save money on accommodation by bringing your own
The catch: Not so ideal for the winter months
How about you use that tent you bought for something other than your annual pilgrimage to Rocking the Daisies? Combine your road trip with a camping trip. You’ll get to sleep under the stars and definitely get at least one hilarious story about the time you thought heard a lion outside your tent or about having to awkwardly pee in the bushes. One night’s stay on a campsite can cost as little as R75 per person!
The deal: Make money off your empty house while you’re away
The catch: Letting strangers stay in your house can be stressful
We all know someone who is making a killing off the Airbnb boom and felt jealous. But just because you don’t live in a baller mansion doesn’t mean someone wouldn’t want to stay in your place. List your apartment or house on Airbnb and you’ll probably be surprised at how many tourists show interest in a well-priced and simple home in beautiful South Africa. You’ll have to be around to let people in and change linen but you could make enough money to totally pay off your own accommodation while you’re travelling; so worth it.
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