Have you ever secretly googled “Cheap Travel options” and hoped for a miracle that will get you abroad without spending all your hard-earned bucks? A Working Holiday is a great opportunity to earn your travel expenses and living costs, while gaining international work experience along the way!
Unfortunately, nothing is free in life, and there are still some costs to cover. Read on to find out GO International’s TOP TIPS on how to save up for your big WORKING HOLIDAY ADVENTURE.
Your first step to figuring out how much you will need to save up for is to calculate your fixed expenses. Contact your GO International expert to talk about your dream destination and best fit program. This way, you will find out exactly how much it costs to take part in the program and how much you will have to pay for your Working Holiday visa.
Our top money-saver option is JAPAN. The visa fee for the first six months is free and you are able to take part in our soft-landing program in Tokyo by spending as little as $399CAD!
It is mandatory for all Working Holiday countries to provide proof of a valid travel insurance throughout your whole stay. Oftentimes, it is worthwhile to compare different insurance providers in order to discover the cheapest daily rate. Have a look at our recommended insurance provider StudyInsured on our GO International website. There, you are able to calculate how much you will have to spend on your travel insurance.
Remember: Rather cut back on something else than your own health!
Another big factor are your travel expenses. If you are not bound to a specific arrival date because of your obligations at home, check out travel comparison websites like Booking.com, Expedia, Kayak, Priceline or Skyscanner to find the cheapest flight to your destination. Especially if you plan to travel for longer than nine months, your best bet is to book a one-way-ticket. Most airlines only publish their flight schedule around 300 days in advance anyway.
If you want to book a return ticket, make sure that rebooking is free or at least at a low, affordable cost. A great option for anyone interested in discovering more than just one country during his or her Working Holiday is a “Round the World” ticket, which will save you big bucks down the line.
It is difficult to generalize how much you will spend during your Working Holiday and what your average living costs will look like in a month. Everybody’s preferences are different and it depends, if you plan to stay at a budget hostel downtown, want to go out as much as possible to enjoy the local food delicacies and not only if you end up in Ecuador or Australia, but also if you live in central Paris or on the Japanese countryside. Have a look at Numbeo for average living costs at your Working Holiday destination.Our recommendation for saving money on your accommodation is choosing a job that comes with staff housing. Some of our pre-arranged jobs (for example the UK Holiday Centre or the Japan Ski Resort program) come with on-site staff accommodation already included in your program fees or net salary. This is a great option to get rid of the monthly big bill for your apartment or hotel.
Last but not at least, there a few (sometimes overlooked) costs which might sneak up on you before you departure from Canada. When you have a minute, sit down and think about the travel essentials you have to buy for your work abroad: For example, your travel backpack, your – oh so useful -packing cubes, small containers for toiletries or the comforting earplugs. GO International will also send you a helpful Packing List before your departure.
Once you have figured out your approximate fixed costs, you will be able to set a goal for your travel savings and determine how to reach it. Probably the most obvious way to save money is to cut your personal expenses. Especially food is able to drain your bank account quicker than you are able re-earn. Try meal prepping, bringing lunch to work or school and looking out for those valuable discounts and deals. You can also cut back on your grocery costs by buying them in a bulk, avoiding pre-prepared food and searching for cheaper food or brand options. Also, don’t shop hungry!
Instead of spending money on gas for your car, try covering short distances by public transit, by riding your bike on a sunny day or even by walking to the nearest grocery store. Other hidden costs you might discover are overpriced contracts (for example mobile and internet plans or the gym membership you haven’t used in six months) and unnecessary subscription services. Furthermore, try reducing your monthly living costs by either downsizing your apartment, sharing a room or simply by cutting back on your electricity and hydro bill.
In order to make some extra money for your Working Holiday; obviously, there is always the option to work (more). If you feel like you only need that small boost to reach your goal, how about taking up a part-time or seasonal job? Also, discuss with your employer the chance of working over-time or extra projects. Typical jobs that don’t take up too much time, but might earn you some extra tips include waitressing, bartending, teaching a foreign language, dog walking and cat- or babysitting. Fun and unconventional jobs would be staring as an extra in a movie or TV series, answering online surveys or taking part in mystery shopping. Especially, if you need to give up your apartment or room and have limited storage options, you should consider selling some of your possessions, for example during a yard sale or on Craigslist.
Now that we have determined how you will be able to save some money on the side, it is necessary to keep the cash out of reach. It is easier spend than earned and therefore, you should have a plan on how to secure it against your midnight online shopping sprees or delivery service splurges. The best option is to talk to your bank and set up a separate Travel Savings Account. Even if you plan on saving a certain amount of money in your checking’s account, it is more likely to turn back into “available funds” without you noticing.
Also inquire about an automatic transfer, which will deduct a fixed amount from your checking’s and put it into your Travel Savings Account. Since having cash in your wallet has become a rare find, try to collect all your coins in a Travel Coin Jar for your long-term savings plan.
It is rather easy to make a plan, but requires a lot more commitment to actually follow it through. Even if your New Year’s Resolution for 2020 reads “Saving Money for Travels”, you might want to consider a more official option. Depending if you are more of a bookish or electronic type of person, manage a Finances and Household Book or download a Money Savings App. It is also a big motivation to see the money literally pile up in your account!