Whether you like the comfort of pre-booking a hostel online, following a guidebook, winging it in hopes of a new adventure, or meeting great people through communities like Couchsurfing finding a cheap place to stay is getting easier and easier. To be honest, there are many ways to find cheap accommodations when traveling but here are the three I use most.
Winging it – Sometimes you just have to do it. For the beginning of my recent trip around the world I didn’t bring a guide book, set up couches to surf, or pre-book accommodations. I just went with it. This has its drawbacks of course but it can also be an extremely rewarding experience. By winging it I’ve stayed in Delhi, India and joined a family at a Hindu wedding, did a homestay at the foot of the Banaue rice terraces in the Philippines, and slept in a rat infested room with a bed covered in feces. Yes its true, you can’t always win.
Booking Hostels Online – Probably the most common way for budget travelers to book accommodations hotel and hostel websites make finding your next place to crash easy. There are dozens of hostel and cheap hotel websites where you can find your perfect accommodation with a couple clicks of a mouse. These sites offer cost comparisons, locations, reviews and so much more. If you want peace of mind and an easy way to find a cheap place to stay this is definitely the way to go.
Couchsurfing – Online communities like Couchsurfing are by far the cheapest and most fun way to travel. Couchsurfing is an online community where like-minded travelers offer up their couches, floors, and spare rooms to travelers passing through. It’s a great way to meet new friends, get the inside scoop on a new city, and best of all it’s a free place to stay. Couchsurfing creates safety nets by having members verify their addresses and provide references for each other.
No matter what type of accommodations you choose I’m sure you’ll have an amazing experience. Whether it was meeting some cool people at a hostel and going out, chilling out at a fellow couch surfers place, or winging it I’ve always had a great time!
Good luck finding your next place!