When you’re in college, there are plenty of memories to be made right on campus. From navigating the ups and downs of dorm life to sporting events and parties, it’s a great time that you’ll cherish forever. But travel is another part of college life that may students dream of, and it doesn’t have to be as out-of-reach and overpriced as you think.
Travelling close to home is one way to get out there and see more of the world, but there are also foreign countries accessible for students on a budget. Whether you’re looking for the best place to visit for spring break or planning a solo trek across Europe, here are some of the best vacation spots for any college student.
Travelling in college can be an incredible way to broaden your world view. After graduation, you’ll likely be too busy working and paying bills to travel the way you would like, so take advantage of the freedom you have while you’re a student.
Before You Go
Paying for your travel, lodging and food can get costly, but if you plan ahead, you’ll be able to experience everything you want without having to sacrifice comfort or a meal. Consider taking out private student loans and using the leftover funds to put toward travel and growth; these loans can provide you with larger sums of money than federal loans and come with other perks like lower interest rates and no fees.
You can also start putting away money from your side gig or part-time job to cover travel expenses. Even several hundred dollars extra can give you all you need for a week’s worth of food while you’re abroad. Saving up to travel is easier when you book flights in advance; if you want to travel for spring break, for example, start looking at tickets the summer prior. And don’t forget the benefits of travelling with friends; not only do you have a companion, but you also get to spend less when you split the cost of accommodations with others.
Canada might not seem like a luxury vacation if you live in America, but Toronto and its surrounding areas are actually filled with history, art and culture. If you’re from a rural area, visiting this bustling city can put you in the heart of Canada’s cultural mecca. Industrial skyscrapers and the CN Tower make the city an impressive sight, but for outdoor lovers, Lake Ontario and tons of sprawling parks are within driving distance.
From Toronto, you can also journey north to the Quebec province, where you’ll feel like you’ve been swept out of North America and wound up in the heart of France. Outside of Paris, Montreal is the second-largest French-speaking location in the entire world. While you’re there, take in the beauty of the Montreal Botanical Gardens and the historic Notre-Dame Basilica.
Spain can be expensive, but if you want some flare in your next trip, Peru is the best alternative. The country’s capital city of Lisbon boasts incredible history, beautiful architecture and incredible music and food. There are also luxurious white-sand beaches along the coast with breathtaking, crystal-clear waters.
The cost of living in Portugal is almost half as much as the surrounding countries, so you can spend a week there exploring on a budget that wouldn’t even last you three days in Italy or Spain. Portugal’s unique landscape gives you the possibility to experience a multitude of locations in a short distance of one another.
Glistening beaches are just one side of the country; there is breathtaking historical landmarks and elegant structures in the city of Braga and Amarante; Sortelha is a forgotten medieval-era town that still holds the remains of a centuries-old castle; and Sintra is only 30 minutes from Lisbon and sports incredibly intricate castles that you can tour in a day.
The incredible conversion rate allows college students to live like they’re on a luxury holiday when they visit Thailand. You can eat an entire day’s worth of delicious Thai food for less than $3 USD a day, and the average hotel costs between $50 to a little over $100 a night. If you decide to stay in a hostel, the costs will be even lower.
Students can easily get by on $30 to $50 a day in Thailand. Even on such a low budget, you can have a diverse itinerary that includes exploring the vivacious city of Bangkok and riding elephants in Chiang Mai. Thailand is one of the most popular destinations in Asia for college students and travelers on a budget. Although its low-cost does make it appealing, the culture, people and beautiful nature throughout the country are what really make it worth visiting.
If you appreciate the aesthetics and architecture of Eastern Europe, Romania will be perfect for your next vacation. Fans of classic horror will appreciate the gothic style of this Balkin country, which is home to Transylvania, the central point in Anne Rice’s “Dracula.”
Romania’s cities feature medieval-esque architecture and a refined atmosphere that can leave you with a sophisticated impression as you tour its winding streets and museums. Fans of fairy tale lore will also enjoy the country as its legends are considered an important part of its culture and history.