Studying abroad isn’t just about getting to know your surroundings and the locals of the city you are taking classes in. It’s about getting to know and see more of the country and even the continent you are on. The odds are that you will want to take a weekend trip at least once or twice during your study abroad experience.
So how do you do this without breaking the bank? Make that weekend trip happen with these six steps:
1. Create a budget.
Determine how much do you want to spend for the whole trip. Can you stick to that budget?
2. Search for cheap transportation options.
A key factor will be determining how much time do you want to spend in transit. Bus, train and ride share options are typically cheaper than flying, however it can mean a longer trip. Bottom line: if you want to get somewhere quickly and are willing to pay to do so, look at flights.
3. Book a hostel.
Do you want to travel cheaply and make new friends? Use a hostel! As a bonus, sites such as Hostelworld.com offers discounts, email updates and free city guides for most places that you will travel to.
4. Envision what activities will make for the perfect weekend away.
First, determine whether you want to go with friends or travel alone; this can change the tone of your trip and the types of activities that you do. Find out of the city offers any free tours. You can search on TripAdvisor for "things to do" and ask friends that have been to that city or country what you should check out. Don't forget that day trips outside of your destination are also an option.
5. Research student discounts.
You will most likely find museums, restaurants and many tourist destinations offer a student price. Even if it's not advertised, always ask if there is a discount for students.
6. Planning is key.
Travel on a budget often means sitting in a a coffee shop or café for one to two days to plan everything out. Use your class schedule for the semester to see when you have breaks, so you can find the optimal times to take longer or shorter trips. It’s always better to leave midweek (Tuesday through Thursday) since it is cheaper to travel then.
Weekend trips don’t have to be complicated or expensive, you just have to know how to do them right!Add this article to your reading list