Winter break is almost here, and you are ready to make your escape from campus and have an awesome vacation. This is the time to travel to someplace new and have exciting adventures. But you are a broke college student on a tight budget, and your options are limited.
Maybe you can’t afford a long stay in Europe or a Caribbean vacation, but with some research and creativity you can still plan a great trip during your winter break. Here are five of the top winter break trips for college students on a budget.
Backpack Through Europe
While the idea of backpacking through Europe sounds like a cliché, this is still an exciting option that’s more affordable than you think. The main expense here is the plane ticket, but if you can manage that you are in good shape. It’s easy to get around Europe by plane, train or car relatively cheaply, and there are tons of inexpensive hostels to choose from in every major city.
At a hostel, you share a room to cut costs, and you will have the opportunity to meet other travelers from all over the world. You will be able to easily meet up with other students and may even link up with some new traveling companions. As an added plus, traveling light means you are much more mobile, and have the freedom to change or adjust your plans and destinations as you go.
Give Voluntourism a Try
Voluntourism is a great option that allows you to see the world and give back to local communities. If this idea interests you, check out Project Abroad, an organization that will help you arrange a volunteer trip overseas. You won’t need to pay for a hotel or hostel, and instead you live with a host family and do volunteer work for the local community in exchange for room and board.
Project Abroad has a wide variety of places you can visit, including Thailand, India, Costa Rica and South Africa. Voluntourism is also a great opportunity to become familiar with a different culture and to form strong bonds with your host family and members of their community.
Go Road Tripping
Now is the perfect time to go road tripping, especially if you live in a state with mild winters where snowstorms are not much of an issue. The price of gas can add up, but in general road tripping is less expensive than flying and paying for hotels. And don’t worry about going cross-country, since you can just stay in one region or even one state. When you research local attractions, you are likely to be amazed at the interesting sights and landmarks you can visit in your own state.
There are other ways you can cut costs as well, such as staying at an inexpensive motel or at a campground, and packing some coolers of food to save money on restaurants. If you are looking for a fun adventure with friends, consider planning a road trip over break.
Plan a Ski Trip
If you want to enjoy a fun and relaxing vacation with friends, another great option is a ski trip, especially if you live within a few hours of a ski resort. You can find some really good deals on sites like College Ski Trips, which offers affordable, all-inclusive packages for college students.
There are a wide variety of resorts to choose from, including ones in Colorado, Maine, New York, and Quebec or British Columbia, Canada. If you are traveling with a larger group, you all may be able to pitch in for a more spacious cabin or room.
Even if you are not looking to ski the entire time, these resorts offer great scenery, sightseeing, and restaurants. There is plenty to see and explore, even if you are not an especially avid skier and mainly want to enjoy time away with friends.
Beach Hop in Florida
With its sunny, warm winters and infinite beaches, Florida is an affordable winter destination for surfers and beach lovers. Winter temperatures typically mean highs of 65 degrees to 77 degrees Fahrenheit, which is warm enough to enjoy the beaches and is perfect for surfing.
Some popular destinations are Daytona Beach, which has affordable hotels and plenty of nightlife, Clearwater, Jacksonville Beach, and Key West. If you want to spend your winter break relaxing on the beach without spending a lot of money, check out some of these Florida beach spots.
Whether you want to spent time on the beach, go road tripping, or spend time in Europe, there are inexpensive ways to do all of these things. Remember that these are only a few of the affordable winter break vacations that are out there.
If you are willing to do your research, plan carefully and be creative there are plenty of ways you can enjoy a winter getaway, even as a broke college student.