How I Saved Money for Travels

Sunrise in Baler, Philippines.

Like I said, I bought a ticket to Asia one year in advance, just to have a clear goal. My goal was to save up 100000 SEK (Swedish Kronor) in one year, which could seem to be an impossible goal since; 1. I had no money, 2. I was working in a shitty café, and 3. I was paying a hell of an expensive rent (and not to speak about the Swedish taxes).

But I kept believing that if I want something – then I will achieve it. 

So, I moved in with my boyfriend so we could share the rent. Our apartment was the most minimalistic place you could imagine. We didn’t buy any other furniture than a kitchen table and a disgusting second-hand sofa. We made a tiny table out of a box, which we painted with some white color and used two pillows to sit on. All of our kitchen tools and other things we needed, we found in my parents’ basement. The funniest (and perhaps weirdest) part, was our big living room. We just had the door closed and pretended it didn’t exist.

We both worked more than full time, which meant we always ate at work and very rarely ate at home — so we saved a lot of money by not buying food. When we did buy food, we only went to the most budget grocery store. Still, believe it or not, we went out to restaurants and did whatever we felt like doing during our free times, without feeling bad about spending money – because we knew that we already did well.

If this minimalistic style sounds strange to you – it’s because you can’t imagine how amazing it feels not to care about owning things. All the stuff I thought I needed to buy – were just completely gone from my mind.

This lifestyle didn’t stress me at all. In fact, it felt so damn good to have so little things. To not feel any need to buy a tv, a new wardrobe, microwave, new clothing or whatever. Trust me; minimalism gives you a genuine feeling of freedom. I wasn’t stressed, I was happy. I had people around me who I loved, a goal to reach, and that’s it. I didn’t need a new Michael Kors bag, Dolce Gabbana perfume or the latest iPhone.

It felt good to work hard to achieve something I want.

And somehow I managed to save up more than I expected. I could’ve traveled for three years without even thinking about work.

NOTE: This is not a lifestyle for anyone. I know that most of my friends wouldn’t manage to live a minimalistic life. A couple of years ago, I wouldn’t think that I would handle it either. But once I realized that I value my dreams more than owning material things — it became easy.




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