How to conquer your wanderlust, even if you’re broke

Brittney Christ

Do you ever feel that you were born to travel?

According to Elite Daily, “there are some people who never feel the urge to leave the house. They are content to stay in the city they were [born and raised in], the couch they sit on, and the 360 degrees that immediately surround them. Then there’s the rest of us: the people who can’t sit still, perhaps meditate to Anthony Bourdain, and always keep their passports on them – just in case.

Whether you call it wanderlust, a love of travel or regular old curiosity – the fact remains the same: Your hunger to explore simply cannot be quenched, no matter how many vacations or journeys you take.”

This is not uncommon. It turns out that some of us are programmed to travel, or to experience wanderlust. On the other hand, some of us like our Netflix and our favorite Chinese takeout, and refuse to give it up to travel to Germany for a week.

Some of us are happy that our friend is in France, while others of us are secretly so jealous that we consider not speaking to said friend for a month once they return.

However, the biggest contender in this is money. Friends all over are getting vacations to Cabo for graduation presents, while some of us are stuck at home due to lack of funds. Of course we would kill for a vacation, but we cannot afford it. There is no way we would ever put that much money on a credit card and add to our debt. But, we want to see the world!

So here are some options for those of us college students who are not financially inclined:

1. Check Out Your Options

Go teach English in Korea or Thailand, or join the Peace Corps and choose where you station. There are many options in which you actually get paid (very little) to travel. Not to mention, this can be dangerous when you are visiting third world countries, but hey, it is traveling. As an added bonus, you are also doing a service, and it is proven that helping others will make you happy.

2. Backpacking

For those of us who have champagne taste on a beer budget, this one may be an issue. As someone who appreciates their space after too many bad roommate experiences, and wants to travel for the sake of escaping a dreary life, backpacking is not too appealing. But if you really want to cover ground on a budget, this is the way to go. You can interact with locals and really see the country for what it is.

3. Save Up

This may be a shocker, but that $5 Starbucks every day is killing your wanderlust…slowly. $5 coffee five times a week is $25. That is $100 a month! In a year, you can already have $1,200 saved, and all from curbing your caffeine addiction and choosing to abstain or drink coffee more economically at home. Just think, a round trip ticket to London costs less than that. You can save up for your flight to London in one year just by forgoing Starbucks every morning. Just think of all of the other extraneous spending you do.

Save up just by being frugal, and you can enjoy the trip of a lifetime.

There is hope to travel the world, however, do not expect to travel in style; this way you will really get to see the country for what it is. Go explore, and satisfy that wanderlust.

Instead of complaining about being the only college student not presently in Europe, make it a goal and work towards that goal every day. At the end of the year, you could be on a plane to your next favorite destination. With this mindset you can conquer the world before your 30s.