Whether you want to study abroad, visit a new state or go a few hours from home, traveling is costly. All the money you saved up from tedious hours of work, can be blown through within minutes when not aware of how to finance your travels properly. In order to allow for a sweet vacation or traveling experience — follow these unusual, unique, unconventional and unheard of ways to save money while traveling. Bon Voyage!

1. Sponsored Travel

Have a company sponsor you as you travel. Many companies are desperate for more traffic, a larger audience and for publicity and as you travel, you become an asset in advertising. Take pictures with their logo in famous places, make a travel video for them, blog about your travels on their site, etc. Make them feel like you’re doing them a favor while also asking for a good chunk of change!

2. Credit Cards

Plan ahead by racking up points on your credit card. The amount of travel opportunities that credit cards offer are endless — many people travel the world and back for free by using points! Look into cards that will work for you, build your credit and enjoy the benefits of points. You’ll be able to use them for transportation, hotels, food, excursions and fun. What could be better?

3. Nature’s Pantry

While traveling, become a local and get your food from nature’s pantry. Fruit and vegetables can be picked naturally — which can be free and enjoyable. Hunting is also a great money saving option for those who choose to do so. If you don’t feel inclined to get your own food, look for locals who did the work for you, their food will be fresh and inexpensive.

4. Find the Steals

Deals and coupons aren’t just for the grocery store anymore. They can be found for flights, food, hotels, clubs and so much more! Look for deals and coupons months before you go to snatch the best price possible on everything. The internet is a priceless resource for you to use in this regard since there are sites that offer these steals, and they’re just a  Google away!

5. An Eye for an Eye

Offer a service in exchange for food, hotels, transportation, etc. For example, if the hotel owner needs help with updating their website and you know how to code websites, then offer your service in exchange for a week’s stay. Give an hour of your time each morning and ask that they put you in their very best room. For them, convince and free help is extremely desirable. Offer what you’re good at and await the perks.

6. Lend It

Lend your place to your friends or family while you’re gone and just ask that they pay the bills. Or if you’re up to it, rent it out to strangers and make them pay a weekly or monthly amount. This way you’ll save money on bills and make extra cash for traveling purposes. It’s a win-win.

7. Swap It

Instead of lending your home or apartment, switch with someone else! Swap your place with someone else in your destination. You both won’t have to pay for hotels, the family whose house you’re staying at will be watching your place, you’ll have an actual cultured “home,” no money is involved other than house bills (which you’d be paying anyway) and it’s totally fun. There are websites that offer house swaps and they can help you coordinate one. So what are you waiting for?

Don’t let money stop you from traveling. The world is out there for you to explore, go see it, save a ton of money and have the time of your life.

[Image credit: marin.tomic on Flickr]

Catherine B is a UCLA student, and blogs at getrichincollege.com.