Students on a tight budget can still travel the world if they follow a few simple steps for discovering cheap travel.
Many opportunities exist today for student travel, in part because of student travel agencies that have emerged to provide students with reduced air, bus, and train ticket fares. These student travel agencies make cheap travel possible by setting up special agreements with hundreds of airlines, bus, and train systems that allow for discounted student travel opportunities.
One such student travel agency is STA Travel, an agency that allows students to pick flights, train trips, and hotels directly from their web site. STA Travel also gives members an online student travel journal, where they can post entries for their friends and family to read.
Another option from this agency is their global cell phones for student travelers, which are priced from $39. Travelers can purchase prepaid minutes for these phones, which allow for savings of up to 70% on global roaming charges.
Other student travel agencies include Student Universe, Travelosophy, and Contiki.
United Airlines has a frequent flier program for students called United College Plus. This program is free to join and allows students to earn free miles for traveling with United Airlines.
United also offers a VISA card that allows for students to earn 1 frequent flier mile per 2 dollars spent with the card. Student travelers can use this VISA to pay for college tuition. Another plus about this program is that United rewards students with 10,000 miles upon college graduation.
Southwest Airlines offers youth fares to travelers between the ages of 12 and 21. These reduced fares are unrestricted, meaning that youth travelers may change their travel dates or times at no extra cost. Complete refunds are issued on unused tickets.
Airtran Airlines offers discount standby fares to students between the ages of 18 and 22. For $69, students may board flights on the condition that there are available seats on the plane. This involves a risk (since flights may be sold out), but that is why the flight costs less. In the event that no seats are available, students’ money is refunded. This is a great option for spontaneous trips.
Also available for student travel are several student discount cards that can be used to purchase cheap travel tickets. The International Student Identity Card is one such card. Not only does the International Student Identity Card allow students to save money on countless flights, trains, buses, and ferries, but it also gives students discounts on entrance to museums and cultural sites, hostels and hotels, bars, restaurants, and attractions around the world. The International Student Identity Card can be purchased for $22.50 at the STA Travel web site.
Another similar card is the Student Advantage card. This card also allows student travelers to save money at many different places, including book stores, museums, attractions, and a variety of hotels and hostels around the world. The Student Advantage card can be purchased for $22.50.
Both the International Student Identity Card and the Student Advantage cards offer student travel discounts of 15 percent off all Amtrak train fares and Greyhound bus unrestricted walk-up fares.
To save more money on student travel, travelers should keep in mind several other tips. When transportation tickets are cheaper if purchased for two people, students should look for a friend or classmate with a similar itinerary and split the cost of the ticket pair. Also, when traveling as a standby passenger, student travelers should go early so that they have the opportunity to board several flights in case the earlier ones are sold out.