I’m frequently asked how I can travel so much, although I don’t make a lot of money.
While I wish that there was some sort of secret to my finances, it’s very simple. I don’t spend on some things, so that I can spend on others. Not what you’re looking for, right? I didn’t think so.
For that reason, I’ve put together a list of tips* that will help you save money and accomplish your goal of traveling the world. Bon Voyage!
1. Eat canned tuna for lunch – no mayo, no crackers. Tuna, meet Fork.
2. Wear your shoes until they get holes. And when the shoe gets a hole, buy colored socks to camouflage it.
3. Check payphones, vending machines and candy dispensers for spare change.
4. Only drink water – from the faucet. Faucet water ice cubes are allowed.
5. Don’t use your heat or air condition. In the summer, walk around in your birthday suit and in the winter, layer up.
6. When you go out with friends, say you’re not hungry and don’t order any food – then eat off their plates.
7. Use baking soda to brush your teeth and as your deodorant.
8. Walk to work. X miles isn’t THAT far! In my day, we had to walk in 15 feet of snow…
9. Learn to cook! Restaurants are expensive.
10. Pan Handle.
11. Learn to cut your own hair.
12. Reacquaint yourself with SPAM.
13. Become a gold-digger.
14. Drive your car until it falls apart at the hinges.
15. Only buy off-brand products.
16. Tie a patch to one of your child’s eyes and smudge soot on their face. Have them walk around the malls with a tin mug and beg for change. The holidays are ideal.
17. Ask a hillbilly for road kill recipes. Then find some road kill.
18. Become a professional dog-sitter or dog-walker.
19. Charge your friends for your services as designated driver.
20. Implement Secret Santa in your family. $20 limit.
21. Wrap gifts with the comics section of the newspaper.
22. Practice this: If it’s yellow, let it mellow. If it’s brown, flush it down.
23. Save hair from your next hair cut. If you must dine out, use a hair to get your meals for free. Nail clippings work too.
24. Go back to wearing your brother, sister or cousin’s hand-me-downs.
25. Get a third job.
26. Pull out your old college ID card for movie discounts.
27. Stop stepping over pennies. Pick them up!
28. Go vegetarian. Meat is expensive.
29. Crash every party at work. Free meals are a bonus.
30. Practice and tryout for the NFL or MLB.
31. Siphon gasoline from your neighbors.
32. Invent something that will make you famous.
33. Marry into royalty.
34. Pour cereal milk back into the carton to be re-used.
35. When you go out on dates, “forget” your wallet at home.
36. In the summer months, go to bed before the sun sets, so you won’t have to use artificial light.
37. Borrow a few kids to have a car wash for a made up cheerleading camp or basketball tournament. Pay the kids off with ice cream.
38. Buy imitation cheese. *cringe*
39. Do your own manicures and pedicures.
41. Move back in with Mom and Dad.
42. Wish for more money and blow out the candles on any birthday cake that you come into contact with.
43. Become a Craigslist “massage therapist”.
44. Travel back in time and invent ketchup.
45. Find the fountain of youth. Market it.
46. Make sandwiches with one slice of bread.
47. Don’t buy any more clothes. You can wear the same pants everyday of the week. As long as they have no designs, no one will notice.
48. Run for and win the Presidency.
49. Shop at the thrift store.
50. Find your rich, secret twin. Ask if they’d want to trade places. If not, kidnap and hide them so you can assume their identity.
51. Steal someone’s dog, and then return it for the reward.
52. You still have cable TV? No other world traveler has that expense! Ditch it.
53. Drop cans in the grocery store, and then ask for a discount because they are dented.
54. Become a fortune teller.
55. Answer the “million dollar question”.
56. Unplug appliances when not in use.
57. Stop dirtying dishes that will require money and dishwashing liquid to clean. Eat out of the can, jar or carton.
58. Buy $100 worth of penny stocks. Cross your fingers.
59. Start a pyramid scheme.
60. Grocery shop at the Dollar Store.
61. Hamburgler Hint: The best way to break into someone’s house is through the chimney.
62. Buy candy and sell it for triple the value. Say it’s for your child’s fundraiser.
63. Plot with Pat Sajack and Vanna White to win big at Wheel of Fortune.
64. Recycle aluminum cans and glass bottles.
65. Sell yourself into a foreign marriage citizenship contract.
66. Invest in “the next big thing”.
67. Dig in McDonald’s dumpsters for discarded Monopoly game pieces to win the jackpot.
68. Have a yard sale.
69. Don’t go grocery shopping when you are hungry. You’ll buy out the store.
70. Hook an extension cord up to your neighbor’s patio and use their electricity.
71. Crochet or knit your own clothes and blankets.
72. Wash clothes in the tub and hang them over your banisters, furniture and balcony to dry.
73. Borrow someone’s baby for an additional write-off at tax time.
74. Develop a taste for cat food.
75. Open a high yield savings account (usually online banks).
76. Get free maps and pamphlets of your city. Sell them to tourists.
77. Seduce the son/daughter of the head of your company. Marry into the family.
78. Give up your apartment and live in your car.
79. Embrace the Japanese tradition of family baths.
80. Go to a park dressed up like a clown. Charge people to take pictures with you.
81. Sell your soul to a New Orleans witch doctor.
82. Get a paper route.
83. Call the cops and news stations and tell them that you think your child floated away in a hot air balloon. When your child emerges from his hiding space, take your family on Good Morning America to tell your amazing story.
84. Time your showers, so that they are no longer than two minutes.
85. Ask your boss for a raise.
86. Find Jack and ask him if he has more of those magic beans. The Giant may have more chickens who lay golden eggs.
87. Win the next Poker Tournament.
88. Put up a stand and sale lemonade and cookies.
89. Get free stuff off Craigslist and resell it for a profit.
90. Print your own money. I’m sure there’s a video tutorial on YouTube.
91. Rinse and reuse your floss.
92. Go to bus stops and offer passengers rides for a quarter less than bus fare.
93. Steal newspapers from your neighbors to get double the coupons.
94. Grow your own herbs and bean sprouts.
95. Use the Diva Cup.
96. Befriend elderly people so that they write you into their wills.
97. Start a movie exchange with your friends.
98. Lie about your kid’s age to get the kids rate at restaurants, theaters and attractions.
99. Tell cab drivers to drop you off around the corner from your home. Then, run off without paying.
100. Create a tree that grows money.
101. Find someone to blackmail.
102. Volunteer for a paid clinical study at a university or hospital.
103. Give up this internet connection. Every little bit of savings counts.
I’ve offered these ways of saving money just to remind you that with a little ingenuity and determination, you can accomplish anything that you set your mind to.
*Disclaimer: Many of these “tips” are ridiculous – some are illegal. Please don’t become a bum or criminal on account of this post.