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Summer Travels on an International Student Budget

Posted on April 28th, 2017 by Yessica Prato

May is just around the corner and summer will start before you know it! Whether you’re graduating and already have a job lined up for the summer, or are still trying to figure out what to do during your summer break- if you are going to do any sort of traveling this summer, there are many ways to stick to a budget and make every dollar count. Part of the studying abroad experience includes sightseeing, traveling, exploring, and engaging in activities that you normally would not be able to in your home country. Here are some tips on how to save money on the way to these places:

Oh the places you’ll go!

The United States provides a unique opportunity for many travelers as it is one of the biggest countries in the world. This means that you have a lot of choices when it comes to where you want to spend your vacations. Due to its vastness, the contiguous US can be divided into six regions: The East coast, West coast, Midwest, Rocky Mountains, South, and Northeast. Each of its regions has their own customs and folklore. Since this country is so big, decide where you want to go first. Many people take road trips and visit multiple states in one weekend. 

Holidays to enjoy in the United States happening during the summer:

  • Memorial Day – May 29, 2017
    • Remember the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces
  • Independence Day – July 4, 2017
    • U.S. states declared their independence from England in 1776.
  • Labor Day – September 4, 2017
    • Honor the contributions and efforts of hard workers throughout the country.

Need a room?

Because the United States is host to many people from around the world, you are bound to find a hotel or hostel within your budget in almost every town or city. However, Trivago checks multiple hotel websites for you and will give you the best deal. If you are looking for something more homey, check out AirBnB. People around the country use this app to rent out their homes for vacations or short term stays. However, you can also find experiences or activities guided by locals! It is one of the best ways to get to really know the place where you are traveling without the high prices of common tourist areas.

Escaping the city

If you are a person that enjoys outdoor activities, you will have many choices to explore nature in the US. Generally, you can find a national park or reserve within an hour or two from where you live. The National Park Service in the United States provides a list of all the places you can visit during your vacations. You can usually stay in a cabin or a tent in many of these parks and partake in activities like fishing, hunting, hiking, kayaking and biking. However, you will want to check the activity with the National Park Service before partaking to ensure you won’t be charged a fee. If you prefer more organized summer outdoor activities, Camp No Counselors is designed for young adults and offers activities like zip lining, wakeboarding, and beach volleyball.

Catch Me Flying, How About That?

If you want to avoid the long road trips inside a tiny car, flying is always an option. Sometimes this may be a better choice than road trips. But beware, during the summer holidays flights tend to be expensive since it’s a peak time for tourism. StudentUniverse is a company that offers good prices on flights. Some things to keep in mind when you are trying to book a flight:

  • Shop early! Usually, 6 weeks before your travel date is when airplane tickets are the cheapest.
  • Shop on Tuesday nights – You will notice that this are the cheapest days to find flights.
  • Fly during the week – It is usually cheaper to leave on a weekday, though this isn’t always the case.
  • Lose the extra luggage – Just take what you need. Airlines like Spirit, Allegiant, and Frontier have very cheap tickets but you will pay extra for any luggage you take.

Before you leave to your home country, make sure you take some time to explore the United States.  You will find that this country offers many opportunities for those bold enough to take a chance.

Written by Yessica Prato

Yessica joined the team in 2016. Originally from Colombia, she migrated to the United States in 2005 with her family. While living in Kansas, she attended Kansas State University. Her interest in education and international studies along with her experience in bilingual customer service led her to EIC. She has also had the opportunity to travel to Mexico, Brazil, and Colombia. When not in the office, you'll find her immersed in a good book or with her dogs at the beach.

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