25 TIPS TO STAY SAFE AS A SOLO FEMALE TRAVELER | HOW I MADE IT OUT ALIVE

In this blog post, I share over 25 tips to stay safe as a solo female traveler. Learn how to stay safe & have fun on your first solo trip!

"What if I get seriously injured or sick & I'm all alone in a strange country without anyone to care for me?"

"I'm a hot mess in the town that I've lived in all my life. How will I take care of myself in a foreign country where I don't know a single soul?"

"What if the plane crashes before I even set foot in this place I've dreamed of all my life? 

"What if I get lost and can never find my way back home?" (This is a valid concern right?)

"What if my worst nightmare comes true and I am raped?"

"What if I never see my family & friends again? What if they were right?"

These are likely the questions circling through your head as you prepare or even consider to take a solo trip as a female traveler. You're probably thinking of everything that might go wrong. And, I don't blame you. I had the same doubts & concerns before I took my first solo trip too. I still do at times and I'm not sure if those fears will ever go away. 

So, I get it. Solo travel IS scary and your concerns are valid. You ARE taking a risk by wandering the world alone, let alone as a woman. There's no doubt about that.

However, solo female travel can be safe and fun! I'm living proof. Yes, risks and danger lie everywhere - even in your hometown. Like anything else in life though, the best thing you can do is take the necessary precautions before entering a risky situation. There are so many ways you can prepare yourself before taking your first solo trip.

 If I would have let my fears about solo travel keep me at home, I would have missed out on the most incredible & life-changing experiences

HERE ARE 25 TIPS TO STAY SAFE AS A SOLO FEMALE TRAVELER

RESEARCH BEFORE YOU GO

First and foremost, do your research. Learn everything you can about a country before visiting. Read personal accounts/stories on blogs, ask questions on popular forums & facebook travel groups. As a solo female traveler, it's best to ask other solo female travelers about their experience visiting a country. 

Read up on weather/natural disasters, bad areas, current political climate/unrest, cultural norms & dress, scams, and other helpful things to know before visiting a new country. Understand that life may be very different and even feel like a different world than your own country.

Remove all scary assumptions about a place from your head(& other people that have never been there) and trust the facts. 

START SMALL

Baby steps...

If you're new to solo travel, it may be best to start small and ease your way into this style of travel. For example, I visited nearby cities & states before I decided to take the leap and travel solo internationally. I'd also left the country before in group settings(EF College Break & Study Abroad), so I knew I wouldn't have to worry about culture shock. 

It may be best to visit a country that isn't too far from home, that has an established tourism infrastructure, or where the majority of people speak your language. 

Starting small will help ease your anxieties, resulting in a more enjoyable time and better decision making. 

BE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS

I meet so many people who say that they don’t actually look at/pay attention to the people around them when they’re walking. You may want to change that, especially when traveling solo. Look at the people in your surroundings - both near and far. This shows any potential predators that you are aware and helps you to catch anything that might be coming.

Has someone been walking behind you for several blocks? Step into a store and see if they continue.

Is someone walking unusually close to you or stalling their steps to stick alongside you?

Does someone appear to be watching you?

Did that car just pull beside you and slow down?

You should be able to notice all of these things. If you like walking with headphones in, leave one ear unplugged so that you can hear any steps or sudden sounds. 

When I am walking, I’m fully aware of what is happening around me. I keep an eye on cars that are driving next to me or anyone that slows/quickens their speed around me. I listen to footsteps behind me & watch shadows. If I’m walking on a quiet street and I see that a man is about to walk past me, I’ll even cross to the other side of the street to be safe. You really never know. It’s better to look a bit paranoid than to be harassed, robbed, or worse. 

PRINT/STORE COPIES OF YOUR PASSPORT

Print copies of your passport to carry along with you if your passport is lost/stolen.

Store an electronic copy on Google Drive or Dropbox to access from any computer if those copies are lost/stolen

Email a copy to your parents/loved ones so they will have a copy they can send to you if all else fails. 

LEAVE YOUR PASSPORT BEHIND

It may seem smart to keep your passport on you at all times but what happens if you get robbed or pickpocketed? 

Lock your most important travel document( ahem…passport) in a safe & secure place to only carry with you when you need to use it. 

There’s no need for you to take it to the beach or to the club at night! 

Sometimes stores or rental companies(bikes, cars, etc) will need to confirm your identity and purchase by ID. In this case, I’ve just been able to show them the copy I have stored on my phone. 

USE YOUR PHONE

Not for Instagram or Facebook, but simply for safety purposes. If you know that you are no good with directions, it may bring a sense of comfort and safety for you to use Google Maps. Wandering and being lost are two completely different things. Looking lost will make you a target. Here are some ways you can use your phone for safety purposes: 

Maps - You can download the offline version of maps for whatever city you’re visiting to use without data/wifi. 

Translation App - At one point or another, understanding what people are saying to you becomes a safety concern. 

Drop A Pin - I usually drop a pin for my location to family or friends when I visit a new place, so that they can know exactly where I am during an emergency.

GET AN INTERNATIONAL PHONE PLAN

It may feel more comforting to know that you can call or text your loved ones if you need to. Thankfully, I have T-mobile so international texting & data is free. If you don’t have T-mobile, it may be worth it to buy an international plan, data hotspot, or SIM card once you arrive in the city. 

PUT YOUR PHONE/MAP AWAY

Walking down the street with your head down will make you a target for thieves & predators.  It also signifies that you are a tourist and likely have other valuables(expensive camera, lots of cash, etc.) on hand. People will ride by or even walk by to snatch your phone right out of your hand. A nice smartphone is worth months of rent & food in many countries around the world, so this would explain why thieves are after people who have them. 

Step inside a store if you need to take a look at your maps or use your phone quickly. It may be best to carry a cheap phone as a back up in case anything happens to your smartphone.

BE SMART ON SOCIAL MEDIA

We all love to 'do it for the gram', every once in a while, but you have to be very careful about this when traveling solo. 

Don’t post in real time - wait until you’ve left a certain location or attraction before posting a photo. 

I know, I know….you want to post that really cool treehouse you’re sleeping at! Fair enough, but you should try to wait until you’ve left to share. 

As a blogger, I never post in real time. I usually only post photos or videos in a place once I’ve left. You never know who’s watching or following! 

If you meet up with someone from social media(Instagram, facebook groups, tinder), be sure to meet in a public place. 

CONNECT WITH OTHER WOMEN

It's been so heartwarming to see that women truly look out for each other around the world. If you're wary about trusting random men, it may be best to reach out to a woman if you need help.

  • Stay in All-Female dorms in hostels 
  • Sleep in the all-female train cart if you’re going to Morocco or sit next to women on public transportation.
  • Need directions? Have a Questions? Ask another woman. 
  • Join Facebook groups for & by female travelers so you can reach out to a group if you need support while on the road. To name a few - Solo Female Traveler Network, Girls Love Travel, and Black Travel Movement.

There are also sooooo many other solo female travelers who are willing to help out because we know how it is. I always make a conscious effort to connect with other solo female travelers because I *get it*.

Disclaimer: This is not to say that men can’t be trusted. In fact, I’ve been surprised by the amount of helpful, trustworthy men I’ve met during my travels. However, I do know that most of my readers(women) would feel more comfortable trusting a woman on first instinct -  and they every reason to feel this way.

READ REVIEWS

Never book a place that has no reviews. Be sure to read reviews when staying at someone's home(couch surfing), in hostels, Airbnb, and even hotels. Look for mentions of safety & reviews that are written by women specifically. 

DON’T BE TOO CHEAP

It’s always great to save a buck, but not at the expense of your wellbeing. It may be safe to walk around during the daytime, but it may be beneficial to pay for a taxi at night. 

If you truly feel unsafe, especially in another person’s home, it is completely worth it to splurge on a more secure place for the sake of your own safety. 

BE CAUTIOUS AT NIGHT

Dangerous activity is more likely to happen at night when there are fewer crowds out.

  • Try to arrive/land in a city during the daytime so you can get your bearings
  • Avoid walking around at nighttime. Opt for public transportation or taxis. 
  • Leave all of your valuables in your hotel and only take the amount of cash you need if you go out at night
  • Try to find a group to join if you want to go out at night. Join a pub crawl, stop by a hostel bar, and meet with people during day tours to avoid going at night alone. 

KNOW YOUR LIMITS

 We all want to push the limits and step outside of our comfort zone during our travels, but sometimes our bodies can only go so far. Here’s what NOT to do when you’re traveling solo: 

  • Drinking until you can’t stand. Have fun, but make sure you are always are of what’s happening around you.
  • Doing so much that you forget to properly nourish your body with food & water
  • Going into deep bodies of water if you aren’t a great swimmer. I’m not ashamed to say that I’ve had to ask for a life vest in certain instances. I know how to swim, but I’m not a strong swimmer for longer periods of time, so hey…better safe than sorry!
  • Eating gluten-heavy foods(if you have CD) for the sake of taste when you know it wreaks havoc on your body. Try your best to research places that work with your diet or bring the necessary medication to prepare in certain countries. 
  • Continuing with that hike even though you feel signs of altitude sickness. Take a break and turn around if you need to. 
  • Going until you can’t go anymore. We are so excited to be traveling and we often want to go go go. We need our rest though, even when we're having a blast. I’ve known several people to end up in the hospital or pass out from sheer exhaustion during their travels. Get the sleep you need!

FAKE IT TILL YOU MAKE IT

You may feel scared on your first solo trip, but you should try your best not show it. If you look lost, disheveled, confused, or scared, you become an easy target for predators. Walk with intent and purpose, looking people directly in the eyes and being fully aware of your surroundings. 

Walk with your head up, shoulders back, and like you know where you’re going…you QUEEN!

USE UBER

Aside from Uber being cheaper than taxis, they’re also safer. Both Uber Drivers and Taxi drivers are complete strangers, but you can view an Uber drivers information/ratings on the app before you get in the car. You can also be sure that they’ve had a background check. On the contrary, you can’t even be sure that all taxis are official when you visit a new country. There have been plenty of times I’ve gotten into a taxi, unsure if it was legit.

If you accept a ride in an Uber and something happens, your parents or friends can at least track that car, person, and their license plate in the app. With a taxi, nobody has any way of knowing who the heck you hopped into a car with or if you got inside of a taxi it all. That’s a scary feeling.

In many countries, locals have warned me to always take Ubers(or other ride-sharing apps like EZTaxi in Colombia) and avoid jumping into random taxis. 

You can use google maps to track your Uber/Taxi to make sure they are staying on route.

PACK LIGHT

Only bring what you need…or really really want. Lugging around several bags gets old quick and like many of the other things on this list will make you a prime target for thieves. Will you be able to run while carrying your bags if you need to? Overpacking will only slow you down.

Only bring the number of valuables you need or truly see yourself using. 

GET A DAYPACK

Separate your valuables into a separate, smaller bag and keep it by your side. Do not pack your valuables into your main luggage bag or into a checked bag. On transportation, these bags are usually thrown around and out of sight. 

Keep your cash & cards distributed throughout various compartments. If one bag is stolen, you'll still have the cash or card left in another bag. This saved me a lot of hassle when I was robbed in Colombia.

Always move your bag to the front of your body in crowded spaces and never stick your phone in your pockets!

ENROLL IN STEP

STEP stands for Smart Traveler Enrollment Program. You can enroll in this free program that will register your trip with the US Embassy in the country you're visiting. 

You'll get information about safety conditions, natural disasters, and/or family emergencies.

TAKE SELF DEFENSE CLASSES

Knowing what to do in case of an attack will help you be more confident & prepared while traveling alone. I have to admit that I haven’t taken classes yet. I know some moves, but my goal is to take one very soon. 

You can also buy self-defense gadgets like a rape whistle or defense pen . You can even use bug spray as pepper spray replacement(since it's illegal in most countries) or a tripod/selfie stick/keys as a makeshift weapon.

However, be careful about fighting back. If someone is trying to rob you with a weapon, give them your belongings. Material things can always be replaced...well at least if you have travel insurance ;)

LIE IF YOU NEED TO

If someone asks about you being alone, feel free to lie and tell them that you’re meeting up with friends or that you’re bf/gf is back at the hotel waiting for you. 

Tell men that you have a boyfriend/husband if they won't leave you alone. It sucks, but men really do tend to show a bit more restraint once they find out that you're already with another man *insert eye roll*. 

GET TRAVEL INSURANCE

I know, it's so tempting to skip out on the extra cost of travel insurance when a trip is already expensive. I'm telling you though, it could save you thousands in the long run on potential health risks, emergencies, theft, & more.

If you're lucky, nothing bad will ever happen on your trip. I went my first 4-5 trips without travel insurance and everything was perfectly fine. Coincidentally, the one time I got robbed was the first time I'd ever purchased travel insurance for a trip. I'm so thankful I had it because they reimbursed me for up $1000 worth of stolen products. If I didn't buy that travel insurance, I would have been out of luck. 

I use World Nomads!

TRUST YOUR GUT INSTINCT

This is not just a cute saying. Despite the fact that you’re traveling alone, you’ll find yourself depending on strangers more than you’d expect for directions or help. I’m here to say that most people are good and helpful. However, we all know that some people don’t have the best intentions. If you get the feeling that someone has ulterior motives, then you need to trust that feeling. It will be easier to get yourself out of the situation sooner than later. Your instinct will reveal a lot to you on the road & it'll sharpen with experience.

Be rude if you need to. I'm not proud of this, but In Cuba, I had to had to tell a man to 'F off' after he proceeded to hiss at me & prompt me to follow him into his home for over 20 minutes. 

BE NICE  

This sounds like a no-brainer but I've encountered so many travelers who treated locals as if they were just an accessory to their trip. Instead of treating them like fellow humans, they treated these people as if they were solely there to entertain & serve them - talking down to them. This is such a shame and I don't think many people realize they are even doing it. I've had so many locals look out for me & actually inform me of people or things to watch out for, simply because I was nice to them 

So many tourists pride themselves on wanting to interact with locals but instead, they blatantly keep them at an arms distance - as if the locals are blind or stupid. People can detect when you're apprehensive, distrusting, or scared of them and they will reflect that behavior back to you. 

Be conscious of your body language. Talk to locals instead of talking at them. Look people directly in the eye if they are speaking to you or serving you. Smile at them. Try to speak their language. Ask them their name. Ask them about their culture. Greet them when you walk inside of their businesses. 

I can promise you that your experience will be safer overrall if you treat locals like you would treat a friend. In return, they will treat you better than the typical tourist with dollar signs floating above their head.


I'm so glad that I never allowed my fears about solo travel to stop me from giving it a try. My solo experiences abroad have changed my life. And, It's not just me. I constantly meet other solo female travelers who feel the exact same way.

I'm here to tell you that you're far more strong, capable, smart, and wise than you probably think. If you properly equip yourself, you'll return safely from your solo trip with enough memories to last a lifetime.



PIN ME!  ⇣⇣⇣

SHARING IS CARING! IF YOU FOUND THIS HELPFUL, SHARING OR PINNING IS ONE OF THE GREATEST WAYS YOU CAN SHOW SUPPORT! THANK YOU! 

safesolofemaletravel.png

 

THANKS FOR READING! HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS? SHARE THEM BELOW! HAVE YOU ALREADY TAKEN YOUR FIRST SOLO TRIP? SHARE YOUR TIPS WITH US!

HOW I AFFORD TO TRAVEL WITHOUT A TRUST FUND

How I afford to travel without a trust fund and how you can too! Keep reading for my no-BS tips that have made it possible for me to travel to over 20 countries without spending a fortune. 

No, I'm not rich. I don't have a sugar daddy. No trust fund, either. Mommy & Daddy would laugh if I asked them to fund my travels(or any other aspect of my adult life). So what's the secret? 

HOW CAN I AFFORD TO TRAVEL SO MUCH? HOW, SWAY? HOW?

This is the number one question I receive and understandably so.

I never thought I'd have the opportunity(or money) to travel the way I do now. It didn't seem within the realms of possibility for someone like me. Then, I discovered the secret. I discovered that normal people without trust funds & rich parents were traveling the world too - just in a different way. 

The travel industry has touted travel as something luxurious & extravagant, but it doesn't have to always be that way. The real secret is that travel can be affordable if you're willing to get resourceful. 

I shared my tips on twitter and they went viral, reaching over 6,000,000 people. To my surprise, this information wasn't common knowledge. It helped many see that travel can be affordable. Check the responses below to see that these tips are legit. 

So, I'm bringing these tips to the blog! As always, I'm here to show how you can travel too! Here's how I afford to travel without a trust-fund and how you can too: 

BE AWARE

Being aware that there are affordable flights, accommodation options, etc. plays a crucial role in your ability to afford travel - in both the short term & long term.

Like I said, I had no idea about these options until I did some research for myself. This newfound awareness got me thinking - "Hm, maybe I CAN actually make this happen for myself!". After that, I was able to save & budget accordingly. If I assumed that this was out of reach, I wouldn't be traveling today. 

If you make it to the end of this article, I encourage you to open up a tab & test these tips out for yourself. You might be surprised! 

BE SMART ABOUT LOCATION

Where are you going? Places like Australia, the US, & Western Europe will be way more expensive than Mexico, Central America, parts of South America, South East Asia, Eastern Europe & parts of Africa.

Your money will stretch much further in certain countries, allowing you to travel for comfortably, for longer periods of time, or simply save more in the long run. The location could make the difference in whether you can afford to take the trip or not. 

For example, You can travel to Thailand and  live, eat, sleep & have fun for a month on what people in the US pay for a month's worth of rent. The cost of living varies greatly from country to country. Consequently, countries with lower cost of living will likely be more affordable to travel to.

FIND CHEAP FLIGHT DEALS

USE GOOGLE FLIGHTS

This flight search engine is seriously the greatest of all time. I could go on & on about it. The features are unmatched and it's extremely user-friendly. Here are some of the best features: 

  • If you don't know where to go, it will provide you with suggestions & related prices. Before entering a destination, you can view a variety of cities with suggestions of what to do once you get there i.e, hiking, museums, etc. Perfect if you want to travel but have a hard time deciding where to go. It will also give you suggestions & prices if you enter "everywhere" or a specific country into the destination box without specifying. 

  • You can view prices by the day. This feature is ICONIC. Once you enter a destination, select a departure date and a calendar view will pull up for you to see the price for every single day going forward. From here, you can view which travel dates are cheapest or you can see if you'd be overpaying by selecting a certain date. The lowest prices will be highlighted in green. 
  • Set price alerts and you will receive emails/notifications when prices drop. 

SEARCH FAR, WIDE & OFTEN

Use multiple search engines to search for flight prices. Different sites will show different prices. Look at @skyscanner @kayak @agoda & direct airline sites! Set price alerts so you know when prices drop with @hopper.

Flight prices change every single day. There's no method to the madness. Searching often will help you to know if you're overpaying or getting a good deal. 

BE FLEXIBLE

In order to score the best flight deals, flexibility is key. Flexible dates, airlines, locations, etc. If you aren't obligated to fly into a destination by a certain date, search for flights FIRST and schedule your vacation/trip around what price works best for you. 

GO INCOGNITO

Search engines can track your search history and increase flight prices. To avoid this, search in incognito mode on Google Chrome, private browser mode on Safari, or clear your cache & cookies

GET TWITTER

Follow Twitter accounts like @scottsflights @airfarewatchdog @theflightdeal , they tweet out flight deals & glitches on the regular. Or you can sign up for email newsletters Be ready for that deal!

 

FIND AFFORDABLE ACCOMMODATION

AIRBNB

Airbnb is an accommodation site that is great for really unique places, a local feel, and just an overall better range in prices for the budget traveler to the luxury traveler. Plus you can give friends your code for a discount on your next stay! Sign up now to receive $45 off your first Airbnb stay! 

You may be interested in: My Best Airbnb Experience Yet!

HOSTELS

If you’re open, give hostels a try! Hostels are a big reason many people can travel. Why pay hundreds for a hotel when you can pay $10-$25 a night or less in most cases?  If you're not too keen on sharing a room with strangers, you can book a private room but still get the benefits of a communal environment! Although I don't love hostels, I have to admit that they've played a huge role in my being able to travel so much. They're also perfect for solo travelers!

Some hostels even allow you to volunteer for 4-5 hours a day in exchange for a free stay. Simply send an email asking if they're looking for volunteers or see the next tip for more info! 

You may be interested in: 7 Reasons To Stay in Hostel

HOTELS

I typically use Booking.com to search for great hotel deals. Get 10 percent off bookings using this code!

Check @HotelTonight for last minute hotel deals. 

COUCHSURFING

Couchsurfing is a website where people offer to host you in their home for free. In a way, it's similar to shared Airbnb. Some might find this creepy! Why would anyone host people in their home for free? Many travelers on the site have experienced the kindness of strangers that have hosted them & simply want to give back to the CS community. 

VOLUNTEER IN EXCHANGE FOR ACCOMMODATION

You can even volunteer around the world in exchange for a place to stay. Check Workaway, Worldpackers, & WOOFING for random jobs that will give you a room & possibly meals for working 4-5 hours a day! You just need to book the flight!

I saved $450 by volunteering on a 5 day sailing trip from Panama to Colombia.

TRADE SKILLS FOR ACCOMMODATION

Are you a photographer? Writer? Blogger? Videographer? Think about what skills you can offer to hotels or companies in exchange for accommodation! Be resourceful!

STUDY ABROAD

Sometimes a semester exchange is actually cheaper than your school's tuition. For example, my university had partnerships with schools overseas & the semester tuition abroad was usually cheaper than our school's semester tuition. You'd just need to cover flight & accommodation costs, which also may be affordable than it would be in your college town!

You never know until you ask! I worked at my university's business school & was heavily involved in our Center for International Business(study abroad office). There are SO many opportunities that students miss out on simply because they aren't aware these scholarships or programs are offered. 

I studied abroad in South Africa, Panama, and India. While I received partial academic-based scholarships, I also worked 2 & 3 Jobs to save up for those programs. This was probably the best decision I made in college! As a matter of fact, these experiences are what prompted me to start this blog and lead the lifestyle I do now. :)

You may be interested in: 5 Reasons You Need To Study Abroad

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF STUDENT STATUS

NEVER forget your student ID on trips because a lot of museums & other activities are offered for free or discounted for students!

Also, check flights like Student Universe and STA travel for student exclusive discounts on flights, hotels, tours & more. You don't even need to be a student for member access - you only need to be under 26. These sites constantly offer deals available nowhere else, like a recent deal for $100 off all roundtrip flights to Chiang Mai from the US at Student Universe!

 

Get $20 off your next booking at student Universe by clicking here

AVOID TAXIS

Avoid taxis - take Uber(Uber Pool is even cheaper!) or local transportation. Taxi costs can add up very quickly no matter where you are! You can also rack up referral credit, allowing you to ride for free!

For example, a taxi from the airport in Paris cost around $50, Uber cost around $30-40, local bus $5 & less. 

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF CHEAP CROSS-COUNTRY TRAVEL

If you live in or plan to visit a European country, you've got it made! Country hopping can be really affordable with Airlines like RyanAir and bus companies like Flixbus make it possible to travel nearby countries for under $20. Not to mention, a high number of affordable accommodation(i.e. hostels) options that just aren't available to US citizens just yet!

I've paid less than $6 to fly from one European country to another using RyanAir! This is unheard of in the US. 

TRY BUDGET AIRLINES

Airlines like Ryan Air, Frontier, & Spirit make it possible to fly at really affordable prices. These kind of budget airlines are best for those who pack light because baggage space is sold at an additional price. All terms are stated on their website!

Don't forget to pack light to avoid additional fees! Please don't play yourself!

FREE ACTIVITIES

Think about all free or low-cost activities you can do abroad:

Live street music

Visit white sand beaches

Wander through cobblestone streets

Hike a volcano

Go on a street art tour

Go for a bike ride around the city 

Go to happy hour

Once you get to your destination, you can always find ways to enjoy yourself at a low cost! 

EAT LOCAL

Eat local! Go to the local markets OR just walk a few streets back from the tourists' spots for cheaper & usually more authentic food!

MEMBERSHIP DISCOUNTS

Are you a military, AAA, or AARP member? Check for discounts EVERYWHERE, on car rentals & hotel bookings!

MAXIMIZE TIME

Time is money, so let’s talk about time. A 3-day trip is better than no trip. Use 2 weekend days & 1 vacation day. Take a quick road trip or visit the next town over! ANY change in scenery could be super beneficial & also low cost.

JOIN A TOUR GROUP

Planning a trip yourself will likely be cheaper than booking a tour. If you don’t have the time or know how to plan - check Groupon, Ef College Break, or Geckos Adventures for affordable group trips!  

After graduating, I knew I wanted to do a big Eurotrip. I didn't have the skills or confidence to plan a long-term foreign trip alone, so it definitely paid off for me to travel with EF College Break. Sure, costs could have been lower if I planned it myself but I honestly wasn't ready for that. Their program offered a competitively low rate, especially in comparison to my a similar program that my university offered at double the price.  

PUT YOUR PHONE ON AIRPLANE MODE

International roaming costs are expensive. Put your phone on airplane mode while you travel & take advantage of free wifi offered at restaurants, hotels, public parks, etc. You can use wifi calling, iMessage(if you have an iPhone), facetime(audio & video calling), facebook messenger(to call & message), WhatsApp & many other apps with wifi alone. 

If you're from the US, TMobile offers free data usage & texting in nearly every country. I have Tmobile, so I always take advantage of this while traveling.

USE REFERRAL CREDITS

Many of the resources I've listed here offer referral credits which could ultimately lead to free travel. Referral credits could cover any of your major travel costs. You can use referral credits that other people share and you can also share your referral code for others to use. It's a win-win for both people!

Airbnb.com - Get $45 off your first stay

Booking.com - Get 10% off your next stay

StudentUniverse.com - Get $20 off your next flight or hotel booking

Lyft - Get $15 off your next ride

Perfect for group trips, because they can cut costs for you AND your friends! 

TRAVEL WITH FRIENDS

I'm a solo traveler at heart, but I'll be the first to admit that one of the biggest downsides to solo travel is paying for everything alone. 

With group travel, you can split taxis, meals, hotel rooms, Airbnb, etc. Costs are cut in half or more. 

GET A TRAVEL CREDIT CARD

I just booked a flight to Southeast Asia for FREE with my Chase Sapphire Rewards Credit card. This card gave me 4 free flights in 2017 alone and it just keeps giving. Free global entry sign-up, lounge access, TSA pre-check, travel insurance, $300 yearly travel credit are among some of the amazing benefits this card has to offer.

Due to a high annual fee, I'd only recommend this card if you plan to travel multiple times a year. I'd also only advise a travel credit card if you have the cash to avoid going into debt. You can use this to make everyday purchases and then immediately pay the card off to avoid interest.

You can use points to book flights, hotels, car rentals, and even activities! 

Apply here - You will receive an offer for 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

TRAVEL LONG-TERM

This is what I am currently doing!

This option isn't available to everyone, but it's one of the greatest ways to save on travel. When you hear about people quitting their job to travel, they're likely taking advantage of long-term travel benefits. This may include saving a big chunk of money,  selling all belongings, giving up rent, etc. Instead of paying for rent, car payments, etc. all of their money goes directly into their lifestyle of travel. It's also possible to cover a lot of ground using this method because you can take advantage of traveling to nearby countries without a time limit. Instead of paying for flights to go back & forth year after year, you can pay for one flight and cover an entire continent.

For example, many people I know pay over $1200 in rent alone. This doesn't even include all other monthly living costs. That amount of money can cover food, accommodation, & activities in so many countries around the world. 

THINK ABOUT WHAT TRAVEL MEANS TO YOU

Finally, think about what travel means to you. Is it about luxury? That’s fine,  but understand that it may be a little more pricey! If it’s simply about meeting people, learning about cultures or languages, stepping outside of your comfort zone, you can definitely make it happen on the low!

GET TRAVEL INSURANCE

Travel insurance can cover many things - illness, infections, theft, injury, missed flights, death, etc. It's not ideal to imagine that these things happen while traveling, but they do all of the time. In the past, I never got it. However, it was a lifesaver on my recent trip through Central America. My belongings were stolen and $1000 was reimbursed to me through my travel insurance. You never just never know. Travel insurance can save you a lot in the long run!

I use world nomads travel insurance, which you can check out here!


So, there you have it! These are the strategies that I, and so many others, have used to travel on a reasonable budget. I encourage you to give them a try for yourself! 

You Might Also Enjoy:


PIN ME!  ⇣⇣⇣

Sharing is caring! If you found this helpful, sharing or pinning is one of the greatest ways you can show support! Thank you! 

affordtravelpin

This page contains affiliate links.

If you find something, leave a comment below and let me know which tip you used. If you have any tips to add, share them in a comment below! Don't hold out on us!

IF YOU FOUND THIS HELPFUL, YOU CAN HELP OUT BY SHARING, COMMENTING, OR PINNING THIS POST. THANKS FOR READING!  

 

How To Find Insanely Cheap Flight Deals | 13 Proven Tips

Wondering how to always find the cheapest flights? In, this blog post. I share 13 proven tips that have helped me fly to over 20 countries - never paying more than $500 for a flight. Seriously, keep reading. You don't wanna miss this. 

"Y’all tryna travel in 2018? Here’s a thread on how I always find the cheapest flights." - Me, Twitter

I tweeted these exact words, followed by my best tips for booking cheap flights.

The entire twitter thread/storm went viral - over 5 MILLION impressions.  The best part? People discovered that these tips were legit and they began booking flights, as a result.

People responded saying the information I shared helped them book their first flight, or see their long distance boyfriend/girlfriend, or finally visit a sick family member. How cool is that!? See what some had to say below!

What seemed like common knowledge to me, proved to be extremely valuable to hundreds, if not thousands of people. And that felt good!

The bottom line? Flights aren't as expensive as you probably think. You've just gotta know where & how to search! And you've just gotta start searching! You might be surprised! You know what they say about people who assume..... ;)

Since Twitter moves so fast, I've created a blog post sharing proven tips for anyone who wants or needs to know how to find cheap flights. Here are 13 proven tips to help you find cheap flights: 


1. BE FLEXIBLE

howtobookcheapflights
cheapflightsmorocco
cheapflights

Be flexible with locations, airlines, dates, etc. Ditch the bucket list. Specific dates will lock you into prices. You could discover an amazing place you knew nothing about.

There are several airline sites that allow you to search for flights without entering a destination(Google Flights, Skyscanner,etc). If you aren’t obligated to be somewhere on certain dates search for flights first, THEN choose dates based on what’s the most affordable. Then request time off based on that.

2. SEARCH FAR & WIDE TO COMPARE PRICES

cheapflights
cheapflights

Use multiple sites! I like http://google.com/flights, Skyscanner, and direct airline sites(americanairlines.com, united.com, etc.). Different sites will show different prices & also have diff features. Compare prices on multiple sites to find the best deal!

Different sites to use: 

www.momondo.com

www.kayak.com

www.Kiwi.com

www.agoda.com 

www.justfly.com

www.cheapoair.com

www.hopper.com

3. USE GOOGLE FLIGHTS

cheapflights
cheapflights
cheapflights

USE GOOGLE FLIGHTS!!! THIS IS NOT A JOKE!

This flight search engine is seriously the greatest of all time. I could go on & on about it. The features are unmatched and it's extremely user-friendly. Here are some of the best features: 

  • If you don't know where to go, it will provide you with suggestions & related prices. Before entering a destination, you can view a variety of cities with suggestions of what to do once you get there i.e, hiking, museums, etc. Perfect if you want to travel but have a hard time deciding where to go. It will also give you suggestions & prices if you enter "everywhere" or a specific country into the destination box without specifying. 
  • You can view prices by the day. This feature is ICONIC. Once you enter a destination, select a departure date and a calendar view will pull up for you to see the price for every single day going forward. From here, you can view which travel dates are cheapest or you can see if you'd be overpaying by selecting a certain date. The lowest prices will be highlighted in green. 
  • Set price alerts and you will receive emails/notifications when prices drop

After these features Google.com/flights, search around via Skyscanner, StudentUniverse, Agoda, & more.

4. SEARCH OFTEN

cheapflights
IMG_1520.jpg

Flight prices change EVERY DAY! There is no exact rhyme or reason. Because of this, you need to search often. Like...multiple times a day, every day - especially if you have a trip planned.  

This is the best way to avoid overpaying. If you search often, you’ll know if whether getting a really good deal OR if you’re actually getting played.

5. FOLLOW FLIGHT DEAL ACCOUNTS ON TWITTER

cheapflights
cheapflights

 

Follow sites like @TheFlightDeal @airfarewatchdog @EscapeHouston @scottscheapflights. They tweet out crazy flight deals & glitches, all day every day.

This is how I scored those $400 flights to Europe, TWICE!

6. SUBSCRIBE TO FLIGHT DEAL ACCOUNTS EMAILS

cheapflights
cheapflights

Alternatively, you can subscribe to email alerts from the exact same websites if you don't have twitter.

www.airfarewatchdog.com

www.theflightdeal.com

And the list goes on...

7. GET A TRAVEL CREDIT CARD

cheapflights
cheapflights

As I said, I just booked a flight to Southeast Asia for FREE with my Chase Sapphire Rewards Credit card. This card gave me 4 free flights in 2017 alone and it just keeps giving. Free global entry sign-up, lounge access, TSA pre-check, travel insurance, $300 yearly travel credit are among some of the amazing benefits this card has to offer.

Due to a high annual fee, I'd only recommend this card if you plan to travel multiple times a year. I'd also only advise a travel credit card if you have the cash to avoid going into debt. You can use this to make everyday purchases and then immediately pay the card off to avoid interest. 

Apply here - You will receive an offer for 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

8. TRY BUDGET AIRLINES

 A flight I paid $5 for on RyanAir 

A flight I paid $5 for on RyanAir 

cheapflights

Check out budget airlines like Frontier, JetBlue, Ryanair(in Europe), Etc. You won’t be getting free peanuts, but you could be saving hundreds on airfare.

Be sure to read the fine print to avoid paying additional fees for baggage or other costs. Everything will be clearly stated on the website before checkout.

9. USE YOUR STUDENT STATUS

 Guatemala 

Guatemala 

cheapflights

Anyone up to the age of 26(you don't actually have to be a student) can use sites like Student Universe and STA Travel for unique flight promotions & deals. 

For example, Student Universe is currently offering $100 off flights to South East Asia via Qatar Airways. That's a big deal!

10. BOOK NOW, THINK LATER

cheapflights
cheapflights

Most airlines and flight search engine sites offer a free 24-hour cancellation period for a full refund. This will allow you 24 hours to change your mind. If you find a killer flight deal but aren't sure about the remaining logistics, you can book before missing out with 24 hours to make a final decision.

As always, double-check to make sure the airline provides this before locking yourself into a flight you're unsure of.

11. USE REFERRAL CREDIT

cheapflights
cheapflights

Rack up referral credit on sites like StudentUniverse by referring your friends. 

12. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF STOPOVER FLIGHTS

cheapflights
cheapflights

Use sites like Skiplagged to take advantage of stop-over flights. Just don't check a bag & you can get off at layover stops that won't be revealed to you during a regular flight search. 

13. CHECK NEARBY AIRPORTS

cheapflights
cheapflights

If you live in a small town, it may be best to search for flights departing from the biggest city near you. Flights are likely to be cheaper from larger hubs. Likewise, it may be best to search for flights flying into all major airports in your destination country. Catching a bus or renting a car to drive to those larger airports could save you hundreds. 


As you can see, it takes a lot of time & research to find cheap flights. However, it's usually worth it. If you can save hundreds or thousands in the long run, why not? The purpose of. my blog is not for you to see me travel, but for me to show YOU how to travel! 

So go ahead, open a second tab, and give it a go! Or simply search below!


cheapflights

If you find something, leave a comment below and let me know which tip you used. If you have any tips to add, share them in a comment below! Don't hold out on us!

If you found this helpful, you can help out by sharing, commenting, or pinning this post. Thanks for reading!