I think being broke is the best way to travel.
I was a totally broke college student when I first began truly traveling. I was like most people where I thought traveling is expensive. Prohibitively expensive and there’s no way to really be able to do it unless you were rich.
I’d seen those travel catalogs where you can buy a package to Greece for 14 days with a guided itinerary, meals and hotel. And it was thousands and thousands of dollars. How would I ever afford that when the measly amount of money I have has to go to text books?
I had a friend in college who was a total travel nomad. He also wore a beanie he’d bought in Peru and he always looked like he’d just gotten off a plane from a 6 month hitch hiking trip around europe. He’d been to so many countries and he insisted it barely cost him anything.
I didn’t believe him, but I was fascinated.
The myth of expensive destination weddings
It can be extremely expensive to travel and even more expensive to have a destination wedding abroad. But it can also be as cheap as my college hippy friend said it was.
We have this myth in the United States that traveling is something that only the wealthy can do, but that is absolutely not true. Like I said, I was a broke college student when I first started. My first trip cost me the most because I didn’t know what I was doing and how to save money. But after that, my trips would generally cost me tops $500 for a month including room, board, activities and airplane tickets. Can you afford that?
Not only do you not need to be rich to have a destination wedding, but there’s actually quite a few benefits to being a broke bride.
People who are broke have the freedom in their lives to just take off and do whatever they want. If you have a job and a career that you have invested in, you probably have the money to travel, but not the time.
Especially here in America.
Countries like Denmark actually encourage people to take time off, heck they’ll even look on you negatively if you don’t take a vacation. In America, we’re expected to only use our vacation time if we have ebola and need to take half the day off for a doctor’s appointment. Actually, we’re expected to use our sick time for that and save our vacation time for a pay out at retirement.
We’re certainly not expected to go on vacation.
That’s sad and in my opinion, it’s not a job worth having. This is a part of our wonderful American culture that needs to be changed. Anyhow, the point is that if you are broke, you don’t need to worry about not getting your promotion by taking a month off to have an awesome destination wedding and honeymoon hitchhiking through the swiss alps or surfing off the coast of Australia.
The richer you get, not only the more invested you are in your career, but also the more stuck you are in your ways. Yes I know this is a big generalization, but it’s an accurate one from what I’ve seen. When you have money, you are used to things being a certain way. You’re used to your comfort and little luxuries and it’s hard to make sacrifices and compromises. And let me tell you, if you’re going to travel, you have to make sacrifices and compromises and be willing to do away with at least some of life’s cushiness.
Traveling is hard, it takes energy, things go wrong and if you’re broke, you’re already used to these things. I once was lucky enough to be given a first class ticket for a train headed from London. It was so cush, I was loving it. But a tree fell on the tracks. We had to walk a mile from the train to the station, take a bus, walk another mile all while dragging suitcases. It. Was. Miserable.
These things happen with travel and if you’ve become a bit spoiled in life, it’s going to be a lot harder on you.
Another thing is that broke people don’t need to impress others with their wedding. You can just have a nice wedding anywhere you like and if any of your broke friends and family come along with you, they’ll just be so impressed that they’re traveling, they won’t expect a five star resort in Aruba!
The majority of destination weddings are cookie cutter beach resort weddings. Boring. Well, ok actually they can be really nice, but they aren’t the only type of wedding that can be nice! What about a lush green meadow shadowed by an Icelandic glacier? What about a little medieval church in Italy? What about even a beach wedding, but in Croatia which has amazing beaches? You can have a cheap and absolutely unique destination wedding if you just avoid the wedding resort world. Why spend tons of money on what everyone else is doing when you can have something amazing?
Don’t make excuses
Travel is scary. Weddings are scary. Doing both together can feel impossible. But I can absolutely 100% assure you that they aren’t. They can be done, they can be done on your own for super cheap or they can be done with some help for a bit more money or they can be done totally for you for a lot of money. It really just depends on your comfort level and your budget.
I will say this though. Do not use the lack of money as an excuse to stop you from having the destination wedding of your dreams. I personally think being broke is wonderful motivation to get creative and be unique and have a wedding that you will look back at in amazement.