How to make £300 a weekend in preparation for your trip…
So you’ve decided you want to break free, untie the chains and see the world! First things first, you need to save, this is fairly obvious, so check out these money saving tips for backpacking.
However, simply saving won’t necessarily get you on that plane anytime soon. I said for years I was going traveling but saved very little, and when I actually put my mind to it, a year before my leaving date, I realised this would have to be a budget trip to beat all budget trips! If over half of your monthly wage gets snapped up by rent, utility bills, phone bills, transportation costs, etc then you know the half you’re left with still gets spent, usually on food, visiting friends and family, birthday and Christmas presents, meaning the leftovers can be slim pickings.
So for six months we (my partner, Gaz and I) made money, and made it every way we could think of. So here’s my top five tips for making extra cash to add to your traveling pot…
1) Car Boots
An idea I hadn’t visited since the tender age of about 6, but three car boots later and we’d made over £150 each time. Most of what we sold was total junk, pulled from under the bed and out of boxes in the spare room. Had we had more time to actually sell the useful items in our house e.g. lamps, kitchen ware etc that figure would have rocketed to at least double.
2) Tap into the promotions industry
It’s a well-kept secret (well apart from the whole of Leeds who have listened to me preach this for a few years) There are many promotions agencies in most developed countries, particularly Britain, America, Australia and South Africa. Jobs can range from leafleting, demonstrating new products, sampling (usually giving out free sweets for one of the big brands who are launching a new range) or mystery shopping (which sometimes involves freebies too) The rate of pay for these jobs is great and as a lot of them are at weekends and evenings you can squeeze it in around the day job, if you have the stamina. The two of us made £300 for two days work, basic pay is around the £80 per day mark.
3) Offer your services to friends, family and neighbours
Whatever it maybe we are all capable of doing something that someone else isn’t. I spent my time building blogs and organising Facebook pages for friends who were looking to promote themselves, actresses, photographers, coders, anyone who needed to market themselves. Whilst Gareth, cut hedges, mowed lawns and drove an ice-cream van when the owner was sick. Open your eyes and you’ll find someone in need – teach music, write, carry out manual labour or perhaps, all three?!
4) Got a spare room? Rent it out
We joined AirBnB in the lead up to our travels and even though we were fairly restricted by other commitments we still racked up $238 from having people stay over for a night or two. We also got to meet some fabulous people, the only downside – lots of cleaning and tidying – after all you’re a makeshift B&B for the night.
5) Be internet savvy
Use Quidco and get cash back on almost everything. New notebook for traveling – £3.50 cash back. Flights – £15.32 cash back. Travel Insurance – £17.12 cash back. There’s also tons of voucher sites, like Dealsqueen, out there to help curb your spending before you go. We even opened a whole load of credit cards before we went (some to use, some not to use.) The rates on opening credit cards can be up to £50 cash back! Three of those and, well, quids in! For your more expensive items (that aren’t car boot material) stick them on Ebay. Ebay isn’t always my friend (I find it very un-user friendly) but that doesn’t mean to say I didn’t make a fair amount of money on it before we left. Everything including earrings, designer clothes and make-up went, totaling more than £100 for the pot.
Finally, although this one isn’t strictly making money it definitely played a part in growing our money pot. Have a party, invite all your friends over for food and drinks, ask everyone to bring a dish and a bottle. I guarantee everyone will over-estimate what’s needed and when you wake up the next day, with a stinking hangover, your fridge will be full. Not only does it mean you don’t spend money out and about, but you have an excellent night celebrating with friends and like the true scavengers you’re about to become, you can live off the leftovers for a week, and probably stay fairly intoxicated for the most part too!
But the best word of advice I could ever give is the age-old saying, “look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves”. In a modern world this isn’t to be taken literally (unless you’ve just done a car boot of course) but for every £5 or £10 extra you earn it soon adds up. We ended up with an extra £3000 using this philosophy, which could be months of more traveling time.
If you would like any more info on any of the above please feel free to contact me at [email protected]