Budget Travel – Accommodations, Ranked from Free to Highest Cost

budget travel accomodationsWhen it comes to travel, we spend a lot of money just to get a shower and a good nights sleep.  This can eat up our budget fast. Here is a complete list of accommodation ideas (organized by lowest to highest cost).

Budget Travel – Accommodations

Not all these are “family friendly” but some will work in a pinch.

  • Rest stops, most rest stops in the US are safe to stop and sleep for a while (but use common sense). They are not designed for camping or extended stays but are plentiful (http://restareas.appspot.com/)
  • Couch surfing: Online websites (http://www.couchsurfing.org/) are set up where people let you sleep on their couches. It’s a cheap, great way to meet people, but may potentially be dangerous.
  • Friends or acquaintances:  No one like a house guest who never leaves, but sometimes all we have to do is ask.
  • Off the beaten path:  If we are in a car or backpacking, sometimes finding a out of the way spot may work well for a quick place to sleep, but just be careful where you stop to sleep.
  • Caves or natural shelters: I had friends who lived in hollowed out redwood tree, and in a cave on a remote beach in Hawaii without incident.
  • Missions/Homeless shelter: Maybe not the best place to sleep, but if your luck or weather turns it may be the driest and safest place
  • Local Churches: Some churches have accommodations, so don’t be afraid to ask.
  • Abandoned Buildings:  Not recommended but just remember if you found them so can others, so be careful.
  • Camp grounds: Minimum cost, and great if you have a comfortable car or tent great, if not pray for good weather.  (http://www.reserveamerica.com/)
  • Hostels:  Hostels typically cost 20-50 dollars depending on location.  They are great places to get a hot shower, meals, meet new people, and are fairly safe. (http://www.hostels.com/)
  • Vacation Rentals: These typically are converted residential homes or apartments, and the owner fixes them up for longer rental terms (usually they have a 3 day minimum). They are hit and miss on quality and services, so check them out before hand. (http://www.vacationrentals.com/)
  • Bed and Breakfasts: B&B’s are inside people’s homes, and the owner rents out rooms and opens up their kitchen/living room areas for common usage, and true B&B’s serve a decent breakfast. (http://www.bedandbreakfast.com/
  • Airbnb: This is a web based portal where you can rent pretty much anything from someones spare bedroom in New York, to an entire castle in Germany. (https://www.airbnb.com/)
  • Motels: Motels are smaller hotels with less service and you can rent rooms for longer or shorter periods.    Hotels: These are great inexpensive places to stay and usually have pools, saunas, room service etc. (http://www.motels.com/)
  • Hotels: Hotels come in all shapes and sizes, and basically refer to anyplace that rents rooms, but provides full service and are staffed 24 hours. (http://www.hotels.com/ )
  • Resorts:  A resort is basically a large area with many accommodations all in one facility.  They generally cost more than other hotels, but provide numerous services. (http://www.luxuryresorts.com/ )

When it comes to budget travel, spending less on our accommodations can save us lots of money.


Join us at our other Budget Travel Ideas at:

Free and Low Cost Travel Tips

Traveling without mortgaging off your first born     



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