Save Money: 10 Places to Sleep While Traveling

woman in blue shirt lying on bed

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Are you a savvy traveler on a quest for both adventure and savings? Well, you’re in for a treat! Picture this: exploring vibrant cities, stunning landscapes, and cultural wonders, all without breaking the bank. In our quest to make your wanderlust dreams come true, we’ve curated a list of 10 incredible places where you can lay your head without emptying your wallet.

woman sleeping in a bed

10 Places to Sleep While Traveling That Will Save You MoneyFrom cozy hideaways to unique accommodations that redefine the meaning of a good night’s sleep, these budget-friendly options are your ticket to unforgettable journeys without the hefty price tag. So, pack your sense of adventure and join us as we reveal the secret to saving big while traveling the world!

1. Hostels

If you’re looking for affordable accommodation while traveling, hostels are a great option to consider. Not only are they budget-friendly, but they also offer a unique opportunity to meet other travelers and make new friends.

Choosing the Right Hostel

When it comes to choosing the right hostel, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, consider the location. Look for a hostel that is centrally located or close to public transportation to make it easier to explore the city. Additionally, check the reviews to see what other travelers have to say about the hostel. Look for reviews that mention cleanliness, safety, and helpful staff.

Another factor to consider is the type of hostel. Some hostels are known for their party atmosphere, while others are more laid-back and quiet. If you’re looking for a good night’s sleep, steer clear of party hostels and opt for a more relaxed option.

Booking in Advance

To get the best deal on a hostel, it’s important to book in advance. Many hostels offer discounts for early bookings, so be sure to check the hostel’s website or booking platform for deals. Additionally, booking in advance ensures that you have a spot reserved, especially during peak travel season when hostels can fill up quickly.

When booking a hostel, be sure to read the fine print. Some hostels require a deposit or have specific check-in and check-out times. Additionally, some hostels may charge extra for amenities like towels or breakfast, so be sure to factor these costs into your budget.

Overall, hostels are a great option for budget-conscious travelers. By choosing the right hostel and booking in advance, you can save money on accommodation and have a unique travel experience.

2. Budget Hotels

When you’re traveling on a budget, hotels might seem like an expensive option. However, there are budget hotels that can be a great alternative to hostels or couchsurfing. These hotels can offer you a private room and bathroom for a fraction of the cost of a traditional hotel.

Here are a few budget hotels to consider:

HotelLocationPrice Range
Motel 6USA and Canada$50-$100
Premier InnUK$60-$100
ibis BudgetEurope$50-$80
Toyoko InnJapan$50-$100
Tune HotelsAsia and UK$30-$60

These hotels might not offer all the amenities of a luxury hotel, but they can provide you with a clean and comfortable place to sleep. Some budget hotels might even offer free breakfast or Wi-Fi. Keep in mind that the prices listed above might vary depending on the location and time of year.

When booking a budget hotel, make sure to read reviews from other travelers. This can help you avoid any unpleasant surprises and ensure that you’re getting a good deal. You can also try booking directly with the hotel to see if they offer any discounts or promotions.

Overall, budget hotels can be a great option for travelers who want a private room without breaking the bank. With a little research, you can find a budget hotel that meets your needs and allows you to save money while traveling.

3. Couchsurfing

Couchsurfing is a popular way to find free accommodation while traveling. It’s a platform that connects travelers with locals who are willing to host them for a short period. In this section, we will discuss how to find a host and safety tips to consider when using Couchsurfing.

How to Find a Host

To find a host on Couchsurfing, you need to create a profile and start searching for hosts in your desired destination. Here are some tips to help you find a host:

  • Fill out your profile completely. Hosts want to know who they will be hosting, so make sure to include a profile picture and write a detailed description of yourself.
  • Be specific about your travel plans. Let hosts know when you will be arriving and how long you plan to stay.
  • Personalize your messages. Don’t send a generic message to every host you find. Take the time to read their profile and send a personalized message that shows you are genuinely interested in staying with them.
  • Be flexible. Hosts have busy lives, so be open to changing your plans if necessary.

Safety Tips

While Couchsurfing is generally a safe way to find accommodation, it’s important to take some safety precautions. Here are some tips to help you stay safe:

  • Read reviews. Before staying with a host, read the reviews from previous guests. If they have a lot of positive reviews, it’s a good sign that they are a trustworthy host.
  • Trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, don’t stay with the host. It’s better to be safe than sorry.
  • Meet in a public place. When meeting your host for the first time, meet in a public place like a coffee shop or park.
  • Let someone know your plans. Before staying with a host, let a friend or family member know where you will be staying and how to contact you.

By following these tips, you can have a safe and enjoyable experience using Couchsurfing to find free accommodation while traveling.

Field of Flowers North Farm
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4. House Sitting

If you’re looking for a unique way to save money on accommodation while traveling, consider house sitting. House sitting involves taking care of someone’s home while they are away, in exchange for free accommodation.

Finding House Sitting Opportunities

There are many websites that connect homeowners with potential house sitters. Some popular options include TrustedHousesitters, MindMyHouse, and HouseCarers. These websites allow you to create a profile, search for house-sitting opportunities in your desired location, and apply for listings that interest you.

When looking for house-sitting opportunities, it’s important to read the listing carefully and make sure you understand the responsibilities and expectations. Some homeowners may require you to take care of pets, water plants, or perform other tasks around the house.

Responsibilities and Expectations

As a house sitter, it’s important to be responsible and reliable. You will be trusted with someone’s home and possessions, so it’s important to take the job seriously. Make sure you understand the homeowner’s expectations and communicate clearly with them throughout the house-sitting period.

In addition to taking care of the home, you may also be responsible for taking care of pets. Make sure you are comfortable with the type of pet and the level of care required before agreeing to a house-sitting job.

Overall, house-sitting can be a great way to save money on accommodation while traveling. Just make sure you are responsible, reliable, and understand the homeowner’s expectations before agreeing to a house-sitting job.

sleeping in a tent

5. Camping

Camping is a great way to save money while traveling. With a tent and a few basic camping supplies, you can sleep for free or at a very low cost in many places around the world. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your camping experience:

  • Choose a good campsite: Look for a safe and legal place to pitch your tent. Some options include national parks, state parks, campgrounds, and even private land with permission from the owner. Make sure to follow any rules or regulations for the area.
  • Pack the right gear: A good quality tent, sleeping bag, and sleeping pad are essential for a comfortable night’s sleep. You may also want to bring a camping stove, cooler, and other supplies for cooking and food storage.
  • Be mindful of safety: Always practice good camping safety, such as keeping food away from your tent to avoid attracting wildlife. Make sure to bring a first aid kit and know how to use it in case of an emergency.
  • Respect the environment: Leave no trace by packing out all your trash and minimizing your impact on the environment. Follow any rules or regulations for the area, such as fire restrictions or restrictions on where to camp.

Camping is a great way to save money while traveling, but it’s not for everyone. If you’re not comfortable sleeping in a tent or if you prefer more amenities, consider other options such as hostels, couchsurfing, or house-sitting.

6. Guesthouses and Bed & Breakfasts

Guesthouses and Bed & Breakfasts (B&Bs) are great options for travelers who want to save money while experiencing local culture. These types of accommodations are often family-owned and operated, providing a more personal touch to your stay.

Guesthouses typically offer private rooms with shared bathrooms and common areas, while B&Bs offer private rooms with private bathrooms and breakfast included in the price. Both options are often cheaper than hotels and can offer a more authentic experience.

When choosing a guesthouse or B&B, it’s important to do your research and read reviews from previous guests. Look for places that are clean, well-maintained, and in a safe location. Some popular websites for booking guesthouses and B&Bs include Airbnb,, and TripAdvisor.

Staying in a guesthouse or B&B can also be a great way to meet other travelers and locals. Many guesthouses and B&Bs offer communal areas where you can socialize with other guests, as well as get recommendations for local activities and restaurants.

Overall, if you’re looking for a budget-friendly and authentic travel experience, consider staying in a guesthouse or B&B. Just be sure to do your research and choose a reputable option.

One of the oldest ways to save money while traveling is through camping. Whether you want to pitch a tent and spend the night, or rent an RV, camping is a great way to explore and save money while doing it.


7. Short-Term Rental Apartments

Short-term rental apartments can be a great option for travelers looking to save money on accommodations. These apartments are typically rented out by the week or month and offer a more affordable alternative to traditional hotels. Here are some things to consider when looking for a short-term rental apartment:

  • Location: Short-term rental apartments can be found in most major cities and tourist destinations. Consider the location carefully when choosing an apartment, as you will want to be close to the sights and attractions you plan to visit.
  • Amenities: Short-term rental apartments can vary greatly in terms of amenities. Some apartments may be fully furnished and include a kitchen, while others may be more basic. Be sure to check what amenities are included before booking.
  • Price: Short-term rental apartments can be more affordable than hotels, but prices can vary widely depending on the location, amenities, and time of year. Be sure to compare prices and read reviews before booking.
  • Booking: Short-term rental apartments can be booked through a variety of websites, including Airbnb, VRBO, and HomeAway. Be sure to read the terms and conditions carefully before booking, as cancellation policies and other rules can vary.

Overall, short-term rental apartments can be a great option for travelers looking to save money on accommodations. Just be sure to do your research and compare prices before booking to ensure you get the best deal possible.

sleeping woman

8. University Dorms in Summer

If you’re looking for a cheap place to stay while traveling during the summer months, consider staying in a university dorm. During the summer, many universities open up their dorms to travelers, offering a budget-friendly alternative to hotels and hostels.

Staying in a university dorm can be a great option for budget-conscious travelers, especially those who are traveling with a family or a group of friends. Dorm rooms are often equipped with multiple beds, making them ideal for groups, and many universities offer suites or apartments that can accommodate larger groups.

One of the best things about staying in a university dorm is the cost. Dorm rooms are typically much cheaper than hotels, and many universities offer special rates for travelers. In some cases, you can even find dorm rooms for less than $50 a night.

Another advantage of staying in a university dorm is the amenities. Many dorms offer free Wi-Fi and breakfast, and some even have dining halls that serve low-cost meals. Plus, you’ll have access to all the facilities on campus, including libraries, gyms, and recreational facilities.

When booking a dorm room, keep in mind that availability may be limited, especially at popular universities or during peak travel times. It’s also important to note that dorm rooms may not be as luxurious as hotels, and you may need to bring your own towels and toiletries.

Overall, staying in a university dorm can be a great way to save money while traveling, especially if you’re traveling with a group. Just be sure to book early and check the availability and amenities before you go.

Rob Ferrett and I talk about a lot of fun Wisconsin State hot spots!

9. Overnight Trains and Buses

If you’re looking to save money on accommodation while traveling, overnight trains and buses can be a great option. Not only do they save you the cost of a hotel room, but they also allow you to cover long distances while you sleep. Here are a few things to keep in mind when considering an overnight train or bus:


  • Cost-effective: Overnight trains and buses are often cheaper than flying or staying in a hotel.
  • Time-saving: You can cover long distances while you sleep, saving you time and allowing you to wake up in a new destination.
  • Comfortable: Many overnight trains and buses offer comfortable sleeping arrangements, such as bunk beds or reclining seats, so you can get a good night’s sleep.


  • Limited space: Sleeping arrangements can be cramped, especially on buses.
  • Noise and disruptions: Sleeping on a moving vehicle can be noisy and disruptive, with frequent stops and passengers getting on and off.
  • Safety concerns: While rare, there is a risk of theft or other safety concerns on overnight trains and buses, so it’s important to keep your valuables close and stay aware of your surroundings.

Before booking an overnight train or bus, be sure to research the options available and read reviews from other travelers. Some popular routes include the Amtrak Coast Starlight in the United States, the Trans-Siberian Railway in Russia, and the overnight buses in South America. Remember to bring earplugs, a sleeping mask, and any other items that will help you sleep comfortably on the journey.

Monasteries, nunneries, and religious student housing exists all over the world but especially in Europe. Most are aimed at travelers who want to experience the monastic life but some religious orders have built small hotels to host travelers. You’ll need to follow the rules and this is often not a choice for family travelers. But, if you really want to get away you may find the solitude you seek inside the walls.

10) Rural Farm Stays

When it comes to budget-friendly travel options that offer a unique and authentic experience, staying at farms is an exceptional choice. This accommodation choice allows you to break away from the typical tourist path and immerse yourself in the daily life of rural communities. Here’s why you should consider a farm stay for your next journey:

  1. Affordability: Farm stays are often significantly more budget-friendly than traditional hotels or resorts. You can enjoy the serene countryside without emptying your wallet on accommodation costs.
  2. Authenticity: These stays provide an authentic glimpse into local culture and traditions. You’ll have the chance to interact with farmers, learn about their way of life, and perhaps even participate in farm activities.
  3. Natural Beauty: Farms are usually nestled in picturesque rural landscapes. Wake up to the sight of rolling hills, lush fields, and fresh country air – a stark contrast to the urban sprawl.
  4. Escape from the Crowds: If you’re seeking tranquility away from crowded tourist hotspots, farms offer a peaceful retreat. It’s an opportunity to unwind, reconnect with nature, and recharge.
  5. Local Food: Many farm stays offer farm-to-table dining experiences. You can savor delicious, fresh, and locally produced food right on the farm. It doesn’t get more authentic than that.
  6. Educational Experience: Travel is about learning, and staying on a farm can be an educational adventure. Gain insights into agriculture, animal husbandry, and sustainable practices that you won’t find in a guidebook.

Here are some tips to make the most of your farm stay experience:

  • Plan Ahead: Research farm stays in your desired destination and make reservations in advance. Popular farm stays can fill up quickly, especially during peak travel seasons.
  • Pack Accordingly: Depending on the location and time of year, be prepared for various weather conditions. Comfortable clothing and footwear for outdoor activities are essential.
  • Respect Local Customs: Embrace the farm’s way of life and respect the local customs and traditions. It’s a chance to learn and adapt to a different pace of living.
  • Ask Questions: Don’t be shy about asking the hosts questions about farming practices, local culture, and the history of the area. Engage with your hosts for a richer experience.
  • Get Involved: If the opportunity arises, don’t hesitate to lend a hand with farm chores or activities. It’s a hands-on way to learn and connect with your surroundings.
  • Disconnect: While many farm stays offer modern amenities, consider disconnecting from your devices and fully immersing yourself in the rural experience.

Staying at a farm can transform your travel experience from ordinary to extraordinary. It’s a chance to appreciate the simple beauty of the countryside, learn about sustainable living, and create lasting memories that go far beyond typical tourist attractions. So, why not trade city lights for starlit skies and embark on a journey that offers both savings and serenity?

10 Places to Sleep While Traveling That Will Save You Money

Final Thoughts

By now, you should have a good idea of the many options available to you when it comes to saving money on accommodations while traveling. From budget hostels to house-sitting to camping, there are plenty of ways to keep your travel expenses down without sacrificing comfort or safety.

When choosing your accommodations, be sure to consider your own preferences and travel style. If you’re looking for a social atmosphere and don’t mind sharing a room, a hostel might be the perfect fit. If you prefer more privacy, a vacation rental or house-sitting gig might be more your speed.

Remember that the key to saving money on accommodations is to be flexible and open-minded. By considering alternative options and being willing to try something new, you can stretch your travel budget further and see more of the world.

So go ahead and start planning your next adventure. With these tips and tricks in mind, you’re sure to find a comfortable and affordable place to rest your head no matter where your travels take you. Happy travels!

Try our Door County Cherry Coffee – just click on the image to see how you can get this flavor of our Gourmet, ethically sourced, coffee that is produced and packaged in Wisconsin

Frequently Asked Questions About Places to Sleep While Traveling

Where can I find free places to sleep while traveling?

There are several options for finding free places to sleep while traveling. One option is to use hospitality exchange networks such as Couchsurfing or BeWelcome. These networks allow you to stay with locals for free in exchange for cultural exchange and companionship. Another option is to camp in public areas such as parks or forests, where camping is allowed. You can also try sleeping in your car or using a hammock to sleep in.

What are some cheap places to stay for a month?

If you’re looking for a cheap place to stay for a month, consider renting a room in a shared apartment or house. You can find these types of accommodations on websites such as Craigslist or Airbnb. Another option is to stay in a hostel, as many hostels offer monthly rates that are cheaper than daily rates. You can also try house-sitting or pet-sitting, which can provide free accommodation in exchange for taking care of someone’s home or pets.

How can I find cheap places to sleep near me?

To find cheap places to sleep near you, start by searching for hostels, budget hotels, and Airbnb listings in your area. You can also try searching for camping sites or RV parks if you have a tent or RV. Another option is to use last-minute booking apps such as HotelTonight or, which offer discounted rates on unsold rooms.

What are some alternatives to Airbnb for budget travelers?

If you’re looking for alternatives to Airbnb for budget travel, consider using websites such as Hostelworld,, or Agoda. These websites offer a wide range of budget accommodations, including hostels, hotels, and guesthouses. You can also try using homestay networks such as or Staydu, which offer affordable accommodation with local hosts.

What are some options if I need a place to sleep tonight?

If you need a place to sleep tonight, consider using last-minute booking apps such as HotelTonight or These apps offer discounted rates on unsold rooms at hotels and hostels. You can also try using Couchsurfing or BeWelcome to find a local host who can offer you a place to stay for the night.

How can I sleep for free while traveling?

To sleep for free while traveling, consider using hospitality exchange networks such as Couchsurfing or BeWelcome. These networks allow you to stay with locals for free in exchange for cultural exchange and companionship. You can also try camping in public areas such as parks or forests, where camping is allowed. Another option is to sleep in your car or use a hammock to sleep in.


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