Beyond providing us with the ability to buy knock-off Chinese camera batteries and get Oreos delivered at 3am, the internet can have some amazing uses. Here, we’ve listed our favourites for budget travel.
We’re lucky enough to be true internet babies, with dial up a distant memory and a world of knowledge that fits in my phone. For travel this is a real god-send as there are some wonderful people out there who not only want the world to be friendlier and more connected, they’ve done something about it.
This list covers all the brilliant website travel resources we’ll be using (or at least keeping in mind) on our journey across the United States. We’ll keep it updated as we go along with things we find, but let us know in the comments if there’s anything we’ve missed!
(updated April 16, 2016)
This website is well-known amongst travellers, and for good reason. The ultimate stop for all things travel-karma, this site was designed to connect travellers looking for a free place to stay with a friendly local, but also has forums for local advice, events, discussions and ride shares. We’ve had so many amazing experiences Couchsurfing around the world – the featured image above is Sarah with travel friends and Couchsurfing hosts in Cambodia! Check out our profiles: Lilly & Sarah.
We’ve yet to try this site yet, but it needs adding here because we are SO excited to try it! This resource maps out all the places around the world where food can be sourced for free – whether that’s a public fruit tree, houses where the owner is happy for people to knock and ask to harvest from their garden or dumpsters where food can be dived for.
Craigslist is the definitive internet classifieds page, with everything you can imagine (and don’t want to imagine) held within its listings. It goes from normal to utterly insane in the space of a few clicks but is a great place to find events, opportunities and car shares. DEFINITELY have a watch of the brilliant documentary, Craigslist Joe.
Whilst unfortunately not free, travel insurance is a must-have, especially on a trip like ours. It’s all fun and games going on an adventure, but if you can’t get yourself out of trouble then that means someone else has to, and that’s not fair. We searched far and wide for travel insurance that would cover hitchhiking and WorldNomads were the only ones who would without demanding that we were a) male, or b) accompanied by a male. SERIOUSLY.
Ever had a long lay-over but no money, or a lay-over not quite long enough to warrant a hotel stay? This website will give you advice on the best places to get some shut-eye in whatever airport you find yourself stuck in. With info on facilities, best places to find seating, lounges, wifi and personal reviews from other travellers, it’s a solid resource. I once spent a night under the seats in Calcutta airport and it was bone-chillingly cold because of the constant AC – information I would’ve known and prepared for if i’d checked this website!