If you are willing to forego a little luxury, international travel for less than $1000 per week is fairly easy to accomplish. The key is planning ahead and using your resources.
Find Your Flight
Flights are one of the most expensive parts of an international trip. When trying to fly on a budget, flexibility is key. Flights are usually cheaper in the middle of the week or on Saturdays. Overall, holiday travel is expensive, but flying on the holiday itself is sometimes pretty affordable. Flight aggregators, or search engines for air travel, are very helpful for finding the best deals. Selecting the plus or minus three day option on the aggregator will show fares for an entire week. Some sites, such as Skyscanner, will show fares for an entire month. If you don’t have a lot of flexibility, try to fly on a Tuesday or Wednesday to get the best deals.
The cheapest flights will usually be very early in the morning or late at night, or they may have long layovers. Consider these factors and decide what you’re willing to deal with during your trip. Think about long layovers as an opportunity. If they are long enough (6+ hours), they may be an opportunity to do a little sightseeing in your layover city while you await your next flight. Some layovers are nearly 24 hours and offer an opportunity to explore a second city without any additional airline costs.
Always be thrifty with your accommodations. Several places around the world have hostels, which are basically budget versions of a hotel. Some of these require you to share a room with others, but many of them will also offer private rooms for significantly less than a traditional hotel. AirBNB can also be a great choice for booking accommodations. Finding an apartment for less than $45 is really easy in most major cities. To avoid unsafe situations or disappointing conditions, only look for places that are listed as “superhosts”. If you must stay in a hotel, use apps like hotels.com or booking.com. These sites often have discounted room rates and offer rewards like 10% off or a free night once you use them a certain number of times.
Once the plane lands, you will still need to travel. Consider your destination and decide how you’ll get around on the ground. Many hotels and some hostels will offer free transportation to and from the airport, but there may be fewer options for visiting local museums, shops, or tourist spots. If public transportation is available, that is always a great option. Bus, subway, and train passes are great investments in most places. However, some destinations may lend themselves to a rental car, bike, or even taxis and rideshare options.