If you’re wondering what is the cheapest way to travel Europe, we have some good news for you. Europe is one of those places you can visit with either a big budget or small budget, and you can leave just as satisfied with a small budget, which is exactly what we’re going to show you.
Did you know that for just €2.50 a day you can travel Europe, staying at nice hotels, taking taxis, and spending time visiting the attractions you want to see, without having to spend hundreds a day? Some have actually been able to travel Europe with literally no money.
This a story about some ordinary young guy named Jamie Bowlby-Whiting who someday decided that office work and settled life wasn’t for him so he went for a hitchhiking trip.
Jamie decided to find the cheapest way to travel Europe with his girlfriend who was from the United States. Before this trip, he had done some hitchhiking around Europe and while he had some good times, for the most part the experience wasn’t wonderful and he went home with about 50 pounds in his pocket.
Jamie and his girlfriend decided this trip would be a land trip traveling England, stopping to spend time on the Italy beaches, and visiting friends along the way. Their goal was to have a great time and do the trip on the tightest trip budget they had ever traveled on.
They planned to cover around 3,000 kilometers in all, and they were going to do this for less than €2.50 a day. They would keep their costs down by using two of the best and easiest ways: free camping and hitchhiking.
If you’re thinking that you need to do a great deal of planning to pull this off, you would be right, but no more than you would research if you weren’t going on a budget. You want to decide where you are going and what you want to see, so that you have some type of plan.
When Jamie and his girlfriend started their journey, their backpacks were loaded with everything you would need to cover 3,000 over a six-month period. They had only one sleeping bag, and they had no tent. Nor did they have a way to cook food or a map. But those issues didn’t bother them at all.
They left from Istanbul, hitching rides along the busy roadway. While many cars passed by, they found many a kind Turkish trucker who was happy to give them a lift. In Sofia, they caught up with some friends who let them crash there for a couple days.
They stocked up on supplies from the cheapest stores they could find on their way. The following day they headed off to Venice where they enjoyed walking the streets eating ice cream, and taking in the sights and sounds of this marvelous city.
Jamie took advantage of the Italian truck driver’s offer who had picked him up on one of his previous ventures – he said to call if Jamie ever made it to his neck of the woods and he would be happy to give Jamie a room, so he just did it. The driver even came and picked them up, taking them to his lovely Dolomite home where they spent the night. From there they headed on to the beach of the Mediterranean Sea where they enjoyed swimming. As Jamie and his girlfriend traveled further, they slept on the beach or the roadside depending on where they found themselves that night.
They made a complete loop starting and ending in the same place. They were creative with their sleeping, stayed at friends when possible, and they had an amazing time on just €2.50 a day each.
Here’s exactly how they were able to pull this amazing fit of a frugal journey off:
How to travel Europe on €2.50 a day
If you ever dreamed of traveling Europe on a budget, it’s not that hard really. You just should heed a few simple tips and avoid overspending on the things you can get for free. Here’s a few tips of a frugal traveler who wants to find the cheapest way to travel Europe, compiled from our own experience, as well as from Jamie’s:
- Whenever possible, try to catch a ride. If together with friends you’ve made or met on your way, these rides will be nice enough to offer you free drinks and food.
- To buy cheap food, watch for deals.
- To stay hydrated, get yourself a nice plastic or glass water bottle and refill it at public taps or drinking fountains.
- Bets things in life are actually free, so take advantage of free entertainment available to you: walk around cities, swim in the lakes and rivers, hike in the mountains and remember to avoid paying for excursions and attractions.
- You can find yourself nice accommodations camping for free or staying with friends.
- You don’t have to pay for transportation if you hitchhike.
After their Europe trip, Jamie stated they still could have actually traveled for even less if they really, really wanted to. They took this journey on the money they had, so it was a small trip budget – if they had more money, they would have simply spent more, and if they had less they would have figured out how to do it on less money.
The budget they had got them to where they wanted to go and they had plenty of fun. If they had less money, they would have chosen fewer things to do, obviously. You decide what you have to travel on and go from there.
If you want to travel on a very low budget or even without money at all, it is totally possible. Want more information? Then make sure you follow us. Stay tuned for more traveling tips and hacks – find out 9 secret places in the world to visit!