Whether you volunteer on a farm, in a guest house, or on a community project, plenty of places offer accommodation, food (or both) as a per diem. Even if they don’t, you’ll be doing a good deed and you won’t be out spending money on frivolous things!
To find out about opportunities, either contact NGOs and charitable organisations you support (Greenpeace, for example, offers international volunteering opportunities), or join websites like WWOOF (Willing Workers on Organic Farms) or Workaway. Also check out Projects Abroad and International Volunteer HQ. Some volunteering opportunities may even contribute to your degree!
- Teach English overseas
Once you’ve completed a TESOL course (Teach English as a Second Language), you can travel and be paid for teaching English in many different countries around the world. Search online for further information regarding this.
- Couch surf
No, not that kind of couch surfing.
Travel the world and make new friends by crashing on people’s couches/futons/spare beds! The couch surfing community is very egalitarian and if you’re using it you should probably at least offer (on your profile) to show people around your own city. It’s pretty safe if you just contact the people who have great reviews (but they may be popular, too—get in early). Find out more on the website.
- Use AirBnB
So it’s a lot like couch surfing but you are paying to stay in people’s houses/apartments. The good thing is that you can often book the whole place to yourself and it’s still cheaper than a hotel. If you’re travelling as a couple or group it can even be cheaper than hostels, and often a lot nicer. Join up here.
- Travel by train
One way to save money is to take overnight trains from place to place, saving you a night’s accommodation and a day’s travel. You can book sleeping cabins, pack yourself a midnight feast, and settle in. Be warned though that you’ll be woken for passport checks if crossing borders! Rail passes are usually a lot cheaper for students and ‘youth’. Check out Eurail passes for Europe, for example. If you do travel during the day it’s a great way to see the countryside.