5 Ways To Go Abroad For Free

1. Win An Online Contest…Seriously!

It’s not as outlandish as it sounds. Get a little friendly with Facebook or Google and you’ll discover that student travel agencies, program providers, even airlines will host competitions to grow their social media followings. You have just as good a chance as anyone to win that round-trip flight, TEFL scholarship or travel photography course. Contests often ask you to like and follow their posts then submit a written piece, photo or video. They are pretty fun to get involved with and you’re bound to learn something about yourself in the process, whether you win or not.


2. Get a Scholarship

Start with your internal resources and the resident scholarship advisor at your university, but depending on where you want to go and what you want to do, some awards can cover it all, from flight to accommodation to spending change. Remember to check every available financial aid option from airfare deposit programs to your local rotarian club opportunities. There are Fulbright, Boren and Gilman scholarships as well as scholarships offered by the program providers themselves. You can research additional organizations, like the Fund for Education Abroad and check the education sections on the government sites for the country you’re visiting. Similar to applying for college or a job, there’s no sense putting your name into just one basket. Go for the whole gamut! For a great directory of scholarships go to GoAbroad.com Scholarship Directory.


3. Host a Fundraising Event

There are heaps of fun events you can host to raise funds for your trip. Take a hint from the Movember Movement fellas for example: Men grow all types of mustaches to raise funds for male cancer charities. If you’re feeling bold, you can promise to shave your head or take on some other wacky challenge, once you reach your funding goal. It’s silly but it gives donors an incentive, which is key. You could also host a dinner party, movie night or talent show, and invite people for donations. Athletes might commit to a competition for donations. Friends and family can donate $5 for every mile you run, bike, swim. You could also collect $10 pledges for every hour you spend doing a social good activity like tutoring or volunteering.


4. Trade Your Skills for Money

It’s like working and saving but you can earn funds faster.
This is the good old fashioned way – bake sales, lemonade stands, leaf-raking, or channeling your passions. If you’re an artist, jeweler, writer then sell your work and inform buyers that the funds are going towards a meaningful trip. Explain your aim and you could get bigger donations for your items. If you’re into music, make up songs or music videos for your donors. If you’re good at IT, design or media, offer your services in return for donations. These skills are always in need. You can also find volunteer and work abroad opportunities in exchange for housing. Some great examples of this are World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms and World Away.


5. Make an Online Crowdfunded Campaign

This is the winner because you can take all of the above and incorporate it to develop an amazing online fundraising campaign. There are a plethora of websites for online fundraising but lucky for you, there are a few specifically made to fund your travels. This approach takes all the basics from 1-4: Time, Effort, Dedication and Consistent Attention, but you’ll get out of it what you put in and that could be a whole lot of cash. Online campaigns are helpful to reach your networks and share those incentives for getting involved with more efficiency.

Victoria-MitaAuthor: Victoria Mita

Victoria graduated with a Bachelor of Education from Loyola University Maryland and has studied, taught, volunteered, worked and lived abroad in Australia and Asia. Director at www.fundmytravel.com, Victoria works with an amazing team, managing an online platform designed to help travelers raise funds for their meaningful travel experiences.

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