Image from Unsplash

Image from Unsplash

Traveling is fun, but it also takes money and time. Going into college, I didn’t view traveling as a possibility. I was too busy and I couldn’t afford it. However, after traveling with a group during winter break, visiting different cities on weekends and taking a spontaneous trip to a nearby city, I realized traveling in college is possible, even on a budget and limited schedule. Check out these tips on how to afford and make time for travel.

1. Get involved on campus

You’re probably thinking, “whaaaat? Did you switch topics?” No, I’m still talking about traveling. While getting involved on campus might not seem to be related to traveling, it’s amazing how many opportunities can come from on campus involvements. Between group trips, conferences and trainings, getting involved could bring travel opportunities. Sometimes, groups will even sponsor students and cover costs, or groups will fundraise to lower the cost. Obviously this shouldn’t be the reason you choose to get involved on campus, but it can definitely be a perk.

2. Do your research

Some trips are very expensive. However, I didn’t realize how cheap traveling can be until I started doing more research.

3. Stay with friends

Have friends from other states or cities? This can definitely be a travel opportunity.

4. Apply for grants and scholarships

Whether it’s through your university or outside grants, there are opportunities to fund your travels.

5. Make the time

It sounds too straightforward, but honestly, having time to travel is a matter of making time. Manage your time well by doing homework on the road and getting a head start on assignments before you leave.

6. Volunteer

I’m not talking about expensive volunteer trips abroad. I’m talking about looking at organizations in your state and seeing if they need help with an event or program on the weekend. Make a day trip out of it and explore after you volunteer with the organization.

7. Be a little more spontaneous

What I learned is the easiest way to travel is to just travel. I spent years making lists of places I wanted to go, but never actually went anywhere until I made a somewhat spontaneous decision to go. Of course this spontaneity should be combined with some planning and research, but the point is, you can try really hard to plan the perfect time, but sometimes, it’s better to just go, adjust your schedule accordingly, and enjoy yourself.

8. Apply for paid internships

If you don’t have time during the school year and you don’t have the money to spend the summer traveling (plus you could also use some career experience), apply for internships out of state. While this is difficult to do for an unpaid internship, some paid internships even cover housing costs and other costs. No, you’re not guaranteed to get these and yes, they’re extremely competitive. But it’s worth it to apply, right?

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the author

Paige Sheffield is a student at Central Michigan University. In addition to writing for The Prospect, she writes for her campus newspaper, You On Top Magazine, and more. She is also a TP Editorial Internship Co-coordinator. She loves poetry, coffee, statement jewelry, zumba, politics, and the Great Lakes. She is passionate about arts education and currently volunteers and interns with organizations that provide art-related programming to underserved populations. You can follow her on twitter @paige_sheff.

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