All I ever think about is leaving. But im scared that ill just end up broke and stranded in some unfamiliar or dangerous place. Anyone have any advice?
today is not as safe to be hitch hiker nor are people more open to the idea of hitch hiking, if you want to be comfortable you will need at least some money mostly for food clearly you can just pass out on a bench or a park and as long as you are not bothering anyone you should be safe. Another way to look at would be to have a lil bit of money and knowing that the amount you have would eventually run could make for more of an adventure which would have to part of the risk you would have to be willing to take.
@rattailbaby, youre afraid of the unknown, I am too, but how will you know youll end up stranded if you don’t go out and do it. The way i see money is that it will help you, so use it wisely. Preparing for trips are all about what you need, not what you want. So I’m sure you’ll do awesome.
@rattailbaby, It differs from person to person to person I think. If you have no problem roughing it for a few nights or not eating the the odd day, then you don’t need a lot of money. Having no money when your travelling can take up a lot of time, as you have to find ways to get a bit of cash and then you have to find the most efficient way of spending it. Money definitely helps and frees you up to “do” more, however, I find when you have no money you are forced to talk to more people and end up having experiences you never thought you would have. If you talk to people of both persuasions I guarantee you that those who traveled with little or no back up money have much more interesting stories.
I think you need to be very independent to do it however, its hard to pull it off without scabbing off others so I would be mindful of this.
The main thing is if you need the security of money or not, if you feel you do you probably won’t enjoy travelling without it.
I live in Boulder, CO and see a lot of hitchhikers in town. They pretty much blend in with the homeless except they have backpacks on. Kind of annoying always being asked for money like every 30 seconds. Seems like if you keep traveling you’ll end up broke no matter what. Maybe if you have some sort of skill that you can sell on the road you’ll be better off.
My plan is to have a home base where I’m enjoying my work and making money, and figure out travel plans.
No experience traveling on zero funds myself though. Doesn’t sound like my way to travel.
@rattailbaby, there’s a show called Madventures where two Finnish dudes travel the world with a minimal budget. In one episode they ran out of money in Asia (Thailand), and went to work on a rice field to get to their next destination.
In any case, it’s always a risk. You can get robbed, have your credit card/cash taken from you. But really, backpacking is a really cheap mode of travel (save up for a few months by doing some extra work and you’ll be set for months, depending on the region) and the risk is well worth it. I think embassies may also help with money problems, or you can contact your parents or other guardians should you fall into a tight spot.
Besides: being stranded in some unfamiliar place sounds exciting! It’s all in how you look at it. Also, every square meter can be dangerous if you’re standing on it at the wrong time. It’s all a matter of luck anyway, you might die in your bathroom before you even have the chance to travel. So go for it!
Ooooo. Hmmm.. There are two ways I would go about it. Don’t bring anything. Don’t pack. Just let go. Be free. Leave spontaneously. I’m not saying you’ll survive long or that state of mind will be easy to maintain but it may be fruitful. You’re journey may simply consist of those short hours and yet in those short hours you’ll learn enough. Or you may regret it. And in another scenario you can also bring money. Pack a little bit. I say just bring like food money mainly. Not sure how you feel about stealing or begging but those are options. Its all good man.
“In the long run, we’re all dead” – John Keynes
I traveled throughout South and Central America for a year on around $7,000, and that included my airfare. Traveling long-term (or just living abroad for a while) doesn’t have to be expensive at all, this is a hidden secret. I met so many people while traveling in SA that said, “Wow a year!? I am so jealous, I could never do that.” And every time I just thought to myself, “Why can you not do this?”
..Aside from saving up the money, all it takes is making the decision. That is the biggest challenge. Buy a one-way ticket for somewhere 6 months from now. Just buy a ticket. After you buy your ticket, everything leading up to your departure will work itself out like clockwork because you have officially obligated yourself to the goal. That ticket is your key to a doorway full of seemingly infinite possibilities.
Read “On The Road” by Jack Kerouac. That might give you ideas. I am in the same position as you and currently reading this book. I wouldn’t use it as a literal guide book for traveling because 1.Takes place in 1940’s and hitchhiking was more “acceptable”. (I would not recommend hitchhiking now-a-days). 2. I don’t know anyone close enough to travel across country to “crash” at their place til I get on my feet which is the main plot of the story. But I believe this book can inspire you in some way.
I think having some money would help, as a cushion, but you don’t have to do it that way.
I’m surprised I haven’t seen this mentioned on here yet, but a popular option for travelers is WWOOFing. If you’re unfamiliar with it, it stands for “world wide opportunities on organic farms.” You work on local farms in exchange for room and board. I’ve heard quite a few really cool stories from friends and people I’ve known who have done it, it seems like all of them really enjoyed it. Not to mention it’s a great way to meet and hang out with fellow travelers. I haven’t done it for myself, but I’m thinking of traveling in the southwest and just wwoofing for a few months this spring before my next work stint.
Money definitely helps and makes things more comfortable, but you can absolutely make it work with not much in your pocket.
It will be hard sometimes, you will struggle a lot, at times you even might want to give up, but god, the experiences you make. Everything new is uncomfortable at first, but you will get used to it.
Maybe try to do some Work&Travel, many countries around the world offer such opportunities (France, Australia, New Zealand). Go to Asia and spend some months there travelling around on a rented motorcycle, it’s so cheap here, you can get around with 200$ a months if you take a tent with you. Ride your bicycle though the states and camp wild along the road, alone or with a friend. Go hitchhiking around the world (I know a guy that used to go from France to the UK on a boat a couple of times, all for free). There are endless possibilities and so many things to see and learn.
Do yourself the favour and go travel. Don’t hesitate and be afraid of the dangers that wait out there. Plan accordingly and think carefully about what you will do and how you will do it and everything will eventually fall in its place.