Sometimes I meet people that say: “oh, I wish I had more money so I could travel more”
I respond: “you don’t need money to travel; you just need internet and some imagination”
WWOOF is short for World Wide Opportunities in Organic Farms. Their concept is; you work on a farm in exchange for food and accommodation. On their website wwoof.net you can find information on each country and which farms are in the program. I clicked on my own country, Norway and was redirected to their Norwegian page. This page had a map that showed the different farms around the country, information about transportation and our food traditions and customs. It costs 15 euros per year to be a member. If you want to travel for free in a relatively expensive country like Norway, this might be the way to go.
At workaway.info you will find families, organizations and people from all over the world who offer accommodation and food in return for manual labour. You can work with anything from painting, planting flowers, carpentry work, , cooking, babysitting to helping out with web design. Their philosophy is: "A few hours honest help per day in exchange for food and accommodation and an opportunity to learn about the local lifestyle and community, with friendly hosts in varying situations and surroundings". Again I looked up my own country and under the lists of hosts I fond and opportunity to work with husky’s and reindeer in the Northern parts of Norway. Talk about a win-win situation. I`m in!
If you haven’t been living under a rock for the past years you have probably heard about couch surfing. Their website has over 7 million users in more than 100.000 cities. Their concept is basically, you sleep on someone couch or where they have a place for you, for free. To do this you have to have faith in the fact that there are nice people just like you around the world, who just wants to get to know other travelers and that are happy to help out. I know a lot of people who use this regularly when traveling and they have gotten to know some nice people and seen some awesome places, without spending money on accommodation. Couch surfing can also give you an inside look into the locals way of life.
When I tell my friends and family about the time I picked up a hitchhiker in Australia they say: “are you crazy? That could have been dangerous”. Yes, hitchhiking or picking up a stranger can be dangerous, but it can also be a really cool and inexpensive way to travel the world. The rule her is don’t do it alone and choose the right country and place for it. In some countries, such as New Zealand, France or Spain it is quite common and accepted to hitchhike. I have picked up hitchhikers in Norway and I have never had any problems. Again you have to trust the fact that there are nice, friendly people everywhere and be willing to try something new.
If you find hitchhiking to scary there are other, inexpensive ways to get around. BlaBlaCar is a website where you can find people offering a seat in their car, in exchange for gas money. I went on their website today and found 13 cars driving from Oslo, Norway to places like Lofoten Islands, Gothenburg and even Paris. One car offered a ride to Gothenburg for 1 pound. It does not get much cheaper than that.
In Denmark this website has become very popular. It is, like blablacar a way for people to hitch rides with one another in exchange for gas money. It is inexpensive and helps save the environment. Definitely worth checking out if you are ever in Scandinavia.