Road trip on a budget – Not exactly how we have all dreamt about our dream road trip would be. It was more along the lines of lavish stopovers, no money constraints and the world would be your oyster. But, most of the time, in real life, we do a road trip on the cheap and that is part and parcel of what makes them so memorable. Going on a budget road trip with just enough money for fuel and a bit left over for beer is going to be more than interesting. Here are 8 Tips for a Road Trip on a Shoestring Budget.
1. No Car Road Trips
Exactly that, how on earth are you supposed to go on a road trip without a car? Well you can, you just have to do a bit of homework and use your initiative. Get a bunch of mates together, and take the bus. It will take a bit longer and you can hop off when you have had enough and if you become really bored you will have a mate to irritate. Also, nobody has to fight about whose turn it is to drive and whose turn it is to drink beer.
2. Car Hire
Now you are probably wondering what car hire is doing on a list about budget road trips, but it does belong here, just give me a second to explain. Some car rental companies have excellent deals pitched against each other which gives us excellent rates. It also means less wear and tear on your own vehicle. Also, if you are going to book your car hire with a credit card, the credit card company will actually pay for your car rental insurance. How is that for a bonus? (Not all of them offer this so check up first).
3. Ride Share
If you still don’t have an actual car, don’t want to ride on the bus or hire a car, than the ride share option is for you. There are actually loads of people just like you who don’t own vehicles and are on a cheap road trip and are looking for people to share the travel costs with them. Find out through a friend of a friend who knows someone who is keen to have you hop aboard, before you join a bunch of strangers and disappear into the night.
You never know where you might end up along the way on your budget road trip, and how much money you will need to allocate for food. Try and save money by packing food in beforehand; stuff that is not going to go off in one day and that could handle a few hardy days in a cooler among the beer and other necessities. This will definitely save you money, and is better than picking up over priced junk food at gas stations and other stops along the way.
5. Camping and Backpackers
At some point along the way, depending how long it takes you to get sick of sleeping in your car, you will need to find somewhere to rest your head. Hotels/Motels can really add to the costs of a budget road trip. Chances are that nice fancy hotel you saw back there will charge you the same to park there as it would to book you all in to a nice camping ground or backpackers. Camping could be cool in summer, you don’t even need a tent, and you could just sleep under the stars.
6. Free Stuff
Not everything in life costs loads of money, in fact some of the best things to do cost very little and sometimes nothing at all. Don’t go to places that are high tourist areas. You came on this budget road trip to explore the path less traveled, not to rub shoulders with the young and fabulous and spend loads of money. Budget road trip remember – not much of that there money around. Get out to a national park, hot springs or nature reserve; experience the beauty of wide open spaces and nature around you. Pitch at tent along the side of a lake and crack open an ice cold beer. Nothing gets better than that.
7. Free Food
Not possible? Think again. Have a look at the destination you vaguely think your cheap road trip is taking you too and look up ‘’Free Food Happy Hour’’ in the vicinity. At the cost of one beer, you can get into happy hour and feed your face for nothing at the same time. Also if you are headed towards a city, you might like to hit the supermarkets and see what morsels the sample ladies are cooking up at lunch time? A few rounds of the shops and you can be on your way.
8. Free Fun
Again not everything that will entertain you should have to cost money or lots of it anyway. Look up places in the area that are holding festivals, markets or fairs. You could stumble onto an authentic medieval festival and have the chance to watch authentic jousts and duels, check out all the markets and medieval exhibitions and that will certainly be a day out to remember. You certainly wouldn’t stumble onto something like that if you stepped out of your front door, unless you lived in Norway that is.
A budget road trip is part and parcel of the adventure itself. There is no way that you would experience the same amazing things or meet the same interesting people along the way if you not on a budget road trip. You have got have sass, creativity and a sheer amount of guts to explore the world around you on a shoestring budget road adventure. So when you get back, what would your Tips for a Road Trip on a Shoestring Budget be for others wanting to do the same?
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