Working Holiday On A Budget
Fancy a break from working but need to keep it cheap? We've got you.
Your working holiday can be a fascinating time. You'll experience new things, learn skills you didn't know you had and meet people that otherwise you'd never have crossed paths. However, ensuring it doesn't cost you a small fortune can be a challenge.
With our short guide below you'll ensure you come out with a positive bank balance, as well as all the positive experiences.
Plan to Succeed
We all know it's not the most fun thing to do in the world, but if you want to keep your trip within budget setting out a basic plan of action should be your very first step. Identify how much you expect your flights to cost, where's most important for you to visit and how much accomodation will cost (you can always make savings with cheap hotels). Once you've got those top level costs together, the real fun can start.
The next part of your budget planning should be around what you plan to do whilst you're there. Will you be eating out each night or cooking in? How many nights out a week are you allowing yourself? How much is a beer? All of these are important questions to realistically manage your working holiday budget, and remember to be honest, you're only kidding yourself.
Now you need to work out if your planned activities, accommodation, transport and social escapades fit within your budget. If not, something will have to go.
Manage Your Expectations
This follows on directly from planning your budget; if you don't have the money to make your dream working holiday work for you, it's time to start trimming the fat and scratching off a few things to make it work. You can begin to cut things out of your planned expenses, whether it's a particularly expensive destination, a few nights in a less luxury hotel, learning to cook or booking cheap flight deals early on. Once you've cut these things, keep a list of them; if they're important to you, you'll find a way to still do them.
Work (On Your Break)
So, we know you're getting away to take a break from working and to let your hair down, but if you want to make your budget go further, then getting a job abroad can be a huge help. Often job perks will include accommodation, meals, activities and of course, a wage. It doesn't have to be a desk job either; things like working in a ski resort, or taking a job at an outdoor activities centre mean you get to experience all the awesomeness of the place, and come out of it with a (hopefully) fairly static bank balance.
Find, and then Use, Local Knowledge
Be friendly when you arrive anywhere and you'll find the locals are often more than happy to help out or give you a few tips. One story we heard was of a couple staying at a hotel right at the end of their trip and they were very short of money, they went in to ask how much the hotel would be and if they could do a deal including dinner, the hotel not only did the deal, but gave them the dinner free and knocked off a proportion of their room cost. The moral of the story; it pays to be polite, honest and ask.