When you first set off to university, it can be one of the most freeing experiences of your life. However, when you get there, you will also quickly realise that living alone is expensive. A lot of students don’t have the option to work on the side of a busy course load, so how do you make use of that newfound freedom to see a bit more of the world?
Get your public transport discounts
Most students can steep discounts on both trains and buses provided by the university, so make use of those when you can and take weekend trips to other destinations within the UK. Sometimes, the mode of transport can be one of the attractions on the trip if you’re taking a historic rail route, for instance.
To get one thing out of the way: rarely is volunteering abroad free. You have some fees to pay up, and you have to bear in mind that you’re there to help so a good deal of your time is going to be spent volunteering. If that sounds reasonable to you, however, then it’s a good way to have some of the more expensive parts of travel covered (if just partially.) It’s a great chance to see a bit more of the world while also doing something for the community or wildlife of the place that you’re visiting.
Find what’s free
If you live in a university city or near a major city, then you don’t have to travel too far to find a great experience. Just look at all of the free tours and experiences to be had there. Historic cities, in particular, tend to have lots of free walking tours that give you a little more insight into local landmarks and historic buildings. All you have to cover is the cost of getting there.
Travel with your uni
A lot of universities and their professors are enthusiastic to make the learning experience as immersive and rounded as possible. As such, it may be the case that your course leader already has study trips organised for that class. If not, it may be worth talking to them about having one a year and seeing if they can convince the administration to allow it. It will still cost each student some money to participate, but it’s much less expensive than going on a trip in a group of your own.
Know how to find a deal
Lastly, if you have to spend some money, then make sure you’re spending as little as possible. Have a shortlist of destinations, find reputable but affordable accommodation there, and see if the different flight deal websites can’t help you find travel that fits within your budget. Try to find places that offer self-catering, too, as you can cut your costs right down by not eating out.
Your options might be a little limited as a broke student, but that doesn’t mean you don’t have any. No matter how empty your pockets might be, you can have a rich experience of travel if you’re a little opportunistic and clever about it.