School? 9-5? Will. Still. Travel.

People ask me all the time how I manage to travel so much while in school/with various jobs. Now, I am a chronic student so while I personally have not made traveling with a 9-5 work yet, I know plenty of people who do. Read on for tips and tricks! 

1. Maximize your breaks!

If you're so fortunate as to still be in school, why aren't you using your spring, summer, and winter breaks to travel? While at Cornell, I went to Panama, Ghana (twice), Thailand, and Peru during spring, summer, and winter breaks AND I did not pay for it. Yes, you read that right. I did not pay for those trips. (I'll be going somewhere this summer on Penn's dime as well). 

As students, I know that one of the big barriers to travel is the financial strain or hardship that it can cause. But guess what, community/civic engagement, service-learning, public service, and other programs like them are IN right now. Meaning that you should be doing what? Taking advantage of them! That means seeking out your college or universities Center for Community-Engagement/Public Service/Diversity and asking about programs that involve research, service/volunteering, and work abroad. And then, make sure they have grants that will cover your fees. (Hit me up if you need help. Seriously). 

2. Use your vacation time. 

Did you know that the average American gets around 12 days of vacation time a year? Sounds lit right? Problem is, that unlike other people of other countries, we do not use our days off. Meaning that we're not maximizing our vacation days and using them to do what? TRAVEL. 

In my mind, there are a few ways you can make your vacation days work for you. Attach one or two to a federal holiday like July 4th or Memorial Day and turn your long weekend into a half-week off so you can be out. Or you can take two longer vacations at different parts of the year - it's up to you. But don't leave those days on the table. You worked hard for them and what's work without play? 

3. Take advantage of flight deals/glitches. 

More on this coming in another post. ;) 

4. Keep an open mind.

I think this is probably the most important piece of advice. You say you want to travel, but are only seeing flight deals to countries/cities you never considered venturing to and so you're a little hesitant about buying a ticket. That's cool and all, but some of the best trips I have ever been on were not to the destinations I originally intended.

If you want to travel, travel. As long as you have the means, anything else is really just an excuse.