Summer Travel Guide: Part 1

By: Maniyah Goodwine

In college, summer breaks are longer than they were in high school. You might associate vacation with being expensive and unobtainable – but with the right planning, it can be simple and fun.

Create a plan. The first step is developing a plan. You must choose where you are going, how you are going to get there, and most importantly, creating a budget and saving plan. Saving for a trip, especially one abroad, may take some time. Developing a concrete plan will aid you in the process because it will enable you to see exactly how much you need to be saving per paycheck.

Travel with friends. Traveling with friends is a way to split the costs of your expenses. Having a group of friends also gives you more safety in a foreign place. Traveling with a large enough group will make you eligible for several group discounts.

Thoroughly look at your options. Before making any decision, you should closely examine all of your options. If you don’t, you may miss out on good deals and getting the most for your money. Turn to websites like Groupon and LivingSocial – they offer discounts on things like dining, spas, even airfare and hotels. In addition for hunting for coupons, search for group rates if you are traveling with friends. You may also want to explore websites like airbnb.com for a (usually) cheaper housing option. In addition to being cheaper, these places still have the amenities of a home. Another pro to choosing to rent a space is that it allows you to submerse yourself even deeper in the culture. You will get to live how the locals live.

Think about additional costs. The trip itself will require the bulk of the money, but you will also have to factor in things like immunizations and passports. In addition, you have to take into account exactly what this trip will do for you. Will this trip enhance your profile as a student? Will you be doing resume building activities? Does this trip benefit you in your career interest and will you be able to fit it in with your academic schedule? Or is it a trip based around leisure (that’s okay too! These tips can still apply.)

See as much as you can. Traveling and studying abroad will usually mean being stationed in one area. Look for the surrounding cities and areas to visit in your free time. For example, although you may be stationed in Birmingham, England you are still in decent proximity to major cities like London or Manchester. When you aren’t studying or participating in events in your original destination, you can take a train to another city. This will help you maximize your dollar as you get to see the world.

Check back next week for even more tips for traveling this summer!