I am an advocate of travelling for leisure. You see, travelling opens up opportunities to meet new people, get adventurous, and have a breath of a new environment. Unexpected twists in experience (good or bad) during my travels have ended up teaching me real life lessons.
Traveling has also created an interest in learning more languages and cultures. I love tasting food, so I make sure I eat the local food of the places I visit, thereby exposing my tongue to a variety of taste.
But in all of this beautiful experiences I realise many travel lovers and adventure seekers have not been doing so because they believe it is very costly, and going on one trip may involve them breaking the bank or using up their life savings.
This belief is not entirely true; but when you hear the stories of financial woes many come back to tell, about how their trip is the cause of a financial distress they are experiencing, you tend to believe travel is a luxury meant for the rich.
As much as I cannot say travelling is free, it is not necessarily expensive. I once watched a Tedx video of someone who “travels for free”. Yea, you read right. He explained how to achieve travel with minimal cost. From experience however, I see some sense and practicality in what he shared. While I cannot advise that all his methods be adopted because, come on, it’s supposed to be a holiday not a penance trip. These tips can help you have a blast on your holiday without missing a pocket.
Plan Your Trip
Taking a holiday should be considered as seriously as any other money spending venture. You don’t just wake up and go and purchase a car (at least if you’re interested in this article it’s majorly because money is a scare commodity for you too). So if you want to travel, plan your finances. Decide what sacrifices you need to make or extra work you need to do to increase your income and start saving up for the trip.
I get everybody wants to go to UK or USA and some will even plan to acquire an accent somehow during a one or two weeks stay. I’ll say instead, if you are a low income earner with needs that outweigh your income, then maybe you should start visiting places not too far – like Ikogosi water springs in Ekiti State, Borgu Game Reserve in Kanji, Niger State, Obudu Cattle Ranch in Cross River State. You may even go to neighbouring countries and visit places like Port Novo in Benin Republic or Ghana.
While these places are relatively cheaper they will help whet your appetite and increase your love to travel more. This longing to travel the following year can also help you become more creative and keep you committed till you can save enough to go on an intercontinental trip. Outside of all this, I need not emphasise that traveling through these short distances would also help you save large cost on transportation – thereby releasing funds for you to enjoy some shopping and sightseeing.
Travel with Everything
You know you’re not rich, so don’t plan on buying your towel or summer clothes during your trip. It’s not worth it – especially if foreign exchange is involved. Even if you intend to shop, try the best you can to ensure you travel with all you need during your holiday. This way, you don’t feel pressured to buy anything out of need. This will also keep you more relaxed in making buying decisions and open you to more choices.
The Bus is Your Friend
As Nigerians it is almost in our DNA to show off. And ‘paint’ everywhere with the Nigerian colour when we travel. However, this attitude is unnecessary and may leave you with more regrets than good memories. Apart from boarding a cab from the airport to your hotel (if you did not arrange for a hotel pick up and drop off during your flight plan). It is advisable to use public bus or train in commuting.
Sharing is Fun
There is nothing as fun as traveling with friends and family. They help you feel less homesick. Having someone watching your back has security benefits too and the best part is you can share the bills.
Holiday is ever fun! You don’t need too much to embark on one. All you need is good planning and an attitude that says I want to relax, enjoy and spoil myself. But above all who knows what you can happen during a trip. It may become an eye opening experience, a life changing one, or a trip that just leaves you grateful.
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