How I Spent Only $6K in One Year of Travel and Lived in the Lap of Luxury

How I Spent Only $6K in One Year of Travel and Lived in the Lap of Luxury

I travel full-time by traveling on a budget and also in total luxury at the same time.


And, when people tell me they can’t afford to travel, I tell them that I’m probably doing it on their disposable income alone, and I'm usually right.

I have a very unique way of traveling because I am a full-time house sitter and travel blogger.


I don’t have any of the traditional living expenses most people have.


Instead, I am bill free and voluntarily homeless.


I've learned over the years how to travel better, although I can also live pretty darn frugally if I want to, since I'm only one person - although I don't because I love to eat and drink Bourdain-style!


Hey, you only live once.

i travel full-time

The secret weapon to how I travel full-time is to save money by having zero bills.


Without any bulls to pay or contracts to worry about, I’m free to choose to spend my money however I want.

i write this blog

Secondly, I write this travel blog so that I can pay for travel and food, and exchange my my work for advertising.

i travel slow

And lastly, I believe in slow travel, which has a great side effect of also being budget travel.


The longer you stay anywhere, the lower your overall travel cost is. 

accommodation: $0

Zilch! Zero! Nada!


I live-rent free by house sitting.


That means I get to live in luxurious homes for free all over the world.


I use TrustedHousesitters, and they have a referral program that lets me give out discounts in exchange for free months of membership, so that my cost is zero.

budget travel by house sitting

food: $400/m

Everything from fresh brewed coffees to traditional restaurants to sampling local beers.


I love going out to to eat and drink so I spend most all of my money eating.


I love trying local foods, street food, new cuisines, different restaurants and sampling local produce.


And, stimulating the local economy and supporting vegan restaurants wherever I go, of course! 


I also do get lots of free food.


House sit hosts often leave a variety of stocked kitchens, pantries, cash tips, gift cards, and gardens of fruits and veggies. 


Neighbors may offer me home-cooked meals or produce from their gardens. 


There have been times I've had restaurant reviews every day and had so much food I could hardly even eat it all.


Other times I've gotten a $1000 tip for a week house sit and splurged eating out and yet others when I get tips on gift cards that gets weeks of eats delivered to my door.


And I've had unlimited access to wineries and breweries' cellars more times than I can remember. 

budget travel by eating lunch

Free food aside, my own out of pocket food expenses seem to average out to about $10-20 a day, which usually gets me at least one decent meal out every day (because I can’t really cook that well, or, at all), and usually two or three, depending on how expensive the country is or what I feel like eating.


In Brighton, it’s barely a meal.


In Ubud, easily 2 or more eats.


Yet in Singapore markets, this budget lasts all day, err day.

transportation: $100/m

My second biggest expense.


All those darn things that get you from point A to point B and want money for it.


Trains, buses, trams, metros, ferries, taxis, rides, airplanes.


A necessity of travel.


But again, going back to slow travel, the slower you go (the more time you can stay in one place), the less you spend on travel.


So if you stay in one place for one month, then you can usually spend less than $100 on travel to that place, depending on distance. 

budget travel by traveling slow

Most of my house sits are around 1-3 months so it evens out the travel cost to get from one to the next at about $100 a month.


Sometimes I can spend as little as $50 on a train or cheap plane ticket if it's close to where I already am.


Sometimes I’ll travel farther, spend $300, stay for 3 months, and still average $100 per month. 


When major transportation like a plane or train isn't absolutely essential, I just walk.


I like to walk because I like to take time to explore and not feel rushed.


Given the option of a bus, tram, or taxi over a walk, I’ll walk.


Walking is free and you can stay safer.


It's good for the environment and you.


We are bipedal mammals after all. 

grand total: $500/m

There you have it.


That’s less than $6,000 USD in one year.


This might seem extreme.


I know because I see the looks of shock on people’s faces when I tell them.


But this just happens to be how I did it.


And I am an extreme minimalist.

how i save money to travel

But, I was never homeless nor starving.


Quite the opposite. 


I spent my time lounging in luxury homes, reading books, watching movies, and taking walks on beaches or in forests, checking out restaurants, coffee shops, pubs, farmers markets, snuggling lots of pets, and having fun, memorable experiences.


Use my referral code to get a discount on your TrustedHousesitters membership.