Backpacking provides the perfect opportunity to learn about new places around the world, while also learning something new about yourself. You’ll encounter people and cultures entirely new to you and be able to see the breaktaking sites that many people don’t ever get to see during a lifetime. If you’re ready to chase your wanderlust and satisfy your need for adventure, take a summer backpacking trip abroad. While it may sound expensive, with a little forethought and planning, your backpacking excursion can cost as little as a couple months of rent.
Here are three ways to explore the world on the cheap, backpack in tow, this summer:
Pick a Budget-Friendly Location
When you’re planning your backpacking trip, you have to consider the cost of gear, flights, lodging, tours or guides and other unexpected expenses along the way. An average two-month backpacking trip through Europe can add up to about $6,500, according to Active Backpacker. Remember, this cost will be different for everyone. How much you spend is entirely up to you. If you’re looking for an affordable and memorable trip consider a destination that’s both beautiful and affordable.
Nepal is one of the most popular places to go hiking in the world. It’s home to eight of the world’s largest peaks, and home to the Himalayas, and it’s also one of the cheapest backpacking destinations. Mountain trekkers can survive on about $25 a day in urban areas and Indie Traveler notes that it’s even cheaper in the remote areas. Additional affordable backpacking destinations include Nicaragua, Bolivia, Argentina, Cambodia and Thailand.
Get Your Tech In-Check
Cross-country backpacking trips call for a mobile plan with international coverage. Don’t worry about finding an Internet cafe to send emails and post photos to Facebook and don’t pay for calling cards to talk to your family and friends back home.
T-Mobile offers the Simple Choice Plan, an international plan that includes unlimited talk and text plus data on the Data Strong Network throughout more than 120 countries. There’s no overages and no annual service contracts. T-Mobile is also the only U.S.-based carrier that offers free in-flight texting, so you can get caught up with what’s happening back home and share your experiences with your Twitter followers on your next flight.
Plus, with a smartphone like the HTC One, you can take stunning images of the places you visit on your trip without investing in expensive and bulky camera equipment.
Rent & Borrow
Your tab for backpacking gear will add up quick. Your pack, boots and clothing can cost $1,000 easily. You can occasionally find deals on Amazon, or check out REI’s semi-annual garage sales to pick up cheap gear.
However, renting and borrowing some outdoor items can work, too. Ask your friends if they would be willing to let you borrow some of their own backpacking items like a camp stove, tent or sleeping pad. Outdoors Geek rents out all types of gear from snowshoes and sleeping bags to GPS devices and bear-proof canisters. And, the Colorado-based rental shop offers nationwide shipping.
Some items, like clothing, boots and your backpack, are more personal, and will only fit you, so you’ll have to buy them.