Low budget travel: the best 20 tips for students

Written by: Christina Pichler, 25.06.2021

Go out, see the world, live the adventure. As a young person you want to travel, get to know new things, taste foreign dishes, go for a walk on beautiful beaches or maybe even climb the highest mountains.
A problem that often holds you back from doing so: an empty wallet. But don’t worry, today we’re going to explain to you how you can find cheap trips that will meet your expectations, but also fit your budget.

Where can you go on a good but affordable holiday? Is an all-inclusive vacation always a bargain? And how does a low-budget vacation even work? We will answer all of those questions below:

General Tips:

1. Take your student ID with you
Always take your international student ID with you. However, you will not automatically receive this student ID, you have to register for it. You can easily apply for your international student ID online at ISIC, for example. With the ID you can not only go to museums and other sightseeing spots at a reduced price, but also receive discounts on many flights, other means of transport and many more leisure activities. We think it’s definitely worth it!

2. Avoid high season
Summer in the sun. Sure, that’s really nice, but unfortunately also correspondingly expensive. Try to avoid high seasons as much as possible, because in the low season your dream vacation spot is just as beautiful, but a lot cheaper and also not so crowded! Especially as a student, it is advisable to use your semester or easter holidays for vacations, as you don’t have many obligations to which you are bound to yet.

3. Red Eye flights
A red eye is a night flight, which means getting up early and landing at sunrise. For many travelers this is not an option, so you can often find Red Eye flights at a very affordable price! We strongly recommend that you compare the prices before you decide on a flight, no matter what time.

4. Unknown travel destinations
Ibiza, Mallorca, Crete or Dubai. These are the travel destinations that we will see in many Instagram posts this summer and rightly so – they are beautiful after all! But for everyone who wants to book a cheap holiday, we recommend destinations far away from mass tourism, as these are simply cheaper!

Preparation

5. Use a Secret Browser
Cookies and Co track all of our Google searches and of course that also applies to the search for flights and hotels. So the longer you hesitate and the more often you look for a specific location, the offers can sometimes get more expensive. To counteract this, you can simply do your search in “incognito” or “private mode”.

6. Websites
Travel websites are great places to get inspiration for your next travel destination, but also to find cheap travel offers, from all-inclusive vacations to your own apartment.

Urlaubsguru – there are many good holiday offers here – city trips, all-Inclusive Trips, flights or hotels.

Checkfelix – Here you can find cheap flights but also hotels

7. Apps
Travel apps are important tools that help you on the go and during your vacation.
Skyscanner – a very good place to go to to find flights and compare prices
Uber – the cheap taxi alternative
Google Translate – to overcome language barriers
CityMaps2go – offline city maps, a guarantee not to lose your way

Catering

8. Avoid tourist areas
You can also save a lot of money when eating out if you go to smaller restaurants, on side streets for example, instead of tourist restaurants near famous sightseeing spots. You probably won’t have a view of the Eiffel Tower, but you don’t have to pay extra for the location either.

9. Snacks
Always having a snack with you is not only recommended in everyday life, but also when traveling. If you feel hungry, you don’t have to make any impulse purchases and therefore don’t create any unnecessary expenses. Make sure, however, that you don’t necessarily throw a candy bar in your handbag or backpack on hot days – it could quickly become a sticky affair! Fresh fruit, granola bars or nuts are healthy, do not melt and give you an energy kick when you need it!

10. Supermarket
As a breakfast, lunch or dinner option, the supermarket is the perfect place for all those who like to travel on a low budget. In addition to the fact that you can buy groceries here at a good price, it is also exciting to see how the offer differs from your own supermarket at home. Perhaps you will find one or two sweets that you have never seen before, or maybe even an inexpensive souvenir for your friends or family at home.

11. Bring your own water bottle & coffee mug
Bringing your own reusable water bottle is not only good for the environment, but also for your wallet. Always fill up your drinking water yourself, but be careful: it is essential to check beforehand whether you can drink the tap water in your holiday region or not! At some cafés, you also get a discount if you bring your own coffee mug – just try it out!

Sightseeing

12. Free Walking Tours
Free Walking Tours are basically free guided walks through big cities where locals show you the most famous sightseeing spots. You can find such tours in almost all major tourist locations; they are very popular especially in Europe. The tours last about 2 hours and you can tip the tour guides afterwards. It is not a requirement but we recommend it anyway.

13. Social media instead of travel guides
Use the internet for travel inspiration instead of buying expensive travel guides. On Instagram, for example, you can search for specific places and see where other people have been and what you particularly like! Pinterest is also a great social media platform for all kinds of inspiration! If you don’t even know where to go, you can simply search for the hashtag #travelinspiration and find your new dream destination!

14. Free days in museums
In many cities, as in Austria, there are certain days on which museums and exhibitions have free entry. The first Sunday of the month is often the day on which you can visit many museums for free, but it is best to find out for yourself what it looks like at your travel destination!

Accommodation

15. Couchsurfing
Probably the cheapest and the most adventurous option for accommodation. Couchsurfing offers you the option to live with locals and get to know cities from a perspective other than that of the tourist. All you have to do is register on the website and you can then exchange ideas with people from all over the world! Important: since anyone can register here, we advise you to be particularly careful. Pay attention to reviews from previous visitors and be sure to forward the address of your accommodation to friends or family. Traveling cheaply is great, but your safety always comes first!

16. Wwoofen
Wwoofen is an online network for volunteers on organic farms. Of course, this option is not just about vacation and relaxation, as you have to work for a few hours on a farm as an exchange for food and housing, but this way you save money and can still see the world.

17. Self-catering apartments
Apartments are the best accommodation option for travelers who want their vacation to be stress -free and very independent. These accommodations usually have their own kitchen, so you can cook by yourself and save money here too. In addition to the great location, the holiday apartments at STUWO also offer you the opportunity to take advantage of many other attractive and, above all, free leisure activities such as the in-house fitness studio.

18. Hostels
Hostels are basically cheap hotels where you share a room with other travelers. For many a no-go, for others a great way to travel low budget and make international friendships at the same time, as mostly young and open-minded travelers from all over the world live here. We recommend ear plugs and a lock for your overnight stay in the hostel to safely store valuables in your closet. Otherwise, be open and have fun!

19. Pilgrim pass
If you have a pilgrim’s pass or are a member of the Alpen Verein in Austria, you can stay overnight in various huts for little money or even for free. A great opportunity for all active vacationers and hikers among you!

20. Camping
You may need the right equipment to go camping, but once that hurdle is overcome, it’s the perfect cheap vacation for young people. You can spend every night in a different place, be next to the beach and can travel very cheaply and flexibly at all times!

As you can see from our tips, traveling cheap is not impossible, but a great option to see a lot of the world for little money. We hope we could inspire you and give you new ideas for your next trip!

Questions?

We are happy to help!