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Travel Without Money?

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1. Posted by Andy1988 (First Time Poster 1 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Hi everyone, well I guess there is already topics similar to this already on the forum somewhere, but I thought I would create my own just to explain my situation, probably similar to a lot of people's doing this for the first time. So, I'm about to finish my work, low paying job that's given me no savings to work with. I'm about to lose my apartment because I'm behind with 4 months rent and I sold most of the decent items I had to pay off my debt. So to sum up, after next month I have nothing here (Scotland U.K.) for me to stick around for.

I'm completely new when it comes to travel, never mind "Hitch Hiking" or roughing it along the way. I need some help and advice on where to go, how to get there and how do I eat on my travels?.. My idea was to bike it, cycle from Scotland to the English Channel and catch a ferry to France, from there I can continue cycling in whatever direction I like leading to any of the bordering countries. I have a simple but good enough tent, sleeping bag and some basic gear I guess a hitch hiker would need. I have 2 forms of government legal ID but no passport. First problem, can I enter any other Euro country being British with photo ID only or would I need a passport?. Second issue I will face is I'm leaving here with less than £200 in my back pocket, this brings the question how do I eat?. My friends tell me I can work as I go, but is there really enough places offering enough work per day for food or money and if so how in the world do you happen to find these places?. Clearly a lot of research needing done in the next 4 weeks.

I'm willing to do just about any job, even if it's knee deep in s*it or scrapping it off the floor for 12 hours as long as it's money or food in my belly at the end of it. I also understand that cycling around Europe is not going to be easy and quick. This is not something I expect to be doing for 3 months, I expect to be doing this for a long time.. I would leave right this second if I could just figure out how to feed my self on the road. Another option that creeps up around this question is Charity places, like "Soup Kitchens" and food banks. These exist all around the world no matter what country you're in, the issue is again, finding them in whatever town you happen to be in. I will be taking no electrics with me since I can't keep them charged up in a tent and I don't have 5 bucks to buy coffee at every coffee shop just to use their electric or WiFi. Is there any websites or forums I can use to find people like me, people just going on the lamb and travelling on foot hitch hiking or otherwise?.. people I can maybe meet up with along the way for assistance and help or to gain experience by learning from them.

A third problem would be the language barrier, I only speak English, so when I make it to France, 1 day Italy and farther, unless I get lucky and run into people I ask help from speak English also, I'm going to have some problems trying to explain my self when I ask for jobs, or a lift and directions, only solution I can think of for this issue is to buy my self a few French Language books and so on as I proceed. Hopefully I can translate enough from the book just to get by all right. Another way would be again find someone from somewhere online to meet up with and let them do the talking.. Unless there happens to be a lot of English speaking food banks around, I doubt it.. A gear list from someone with experience would be nice to, a list of stuff I will need at some point on the journey, or a list of places that allow work for meals or money, and no I don't have any talent like singing or dancing to perform street busking for money or I would be out there dancing my butt off by now. Any help or advice would be awesome. I'm new to this whole thing but I'm on the street in 4 weeks anyway, so I would rather be travelling homeless seeing the world, rather than sitting bitter and mad under a bridge turning to drink or drugs. My high will be meeting new people and seeing new things even if I do break my legs getting there, at least I can say I tried. Thanks everyone and sorry for the slightly long post.. I had a lot more to add here but thought I should stop. If anyone wants to talk about meeting or helping me out feel free to message me.


2. Posted by CheersT (Inactive 2578 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Good luck.


3. Posted by Andyf (Moderator 925 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Yeah you need a passport - other photo id may be ok in the uk but in Europe the id they require from British people is a passport.

I don't think Europe is the answer to your problems. Many of the European countries have a lot higher unemployment than us and less of a safety net. They have their own young guys willing to graft but no jobs, who have advantages over you like speaking the language.

I also think you'd have trouble a lot of places trying to rough camp as basically a vagrant. They find you without job, money, well a good outcome will be being picked up by the police; if other people decide you don't belong there maybe you'll wake up having donated some organs. There are rougher places than Paisley.

If you want to see Europe can't you get work in haulage and see it from the cab of a truck? Do they take lads to help with the loading? Or get your hgv ticket. Other than that, if you want to work hard and have opportunities, have you looked if there are still jobs in the Aussie mining boom? No language barrier, good money for hard work.

Post 4 was removed by a moderator
5. Posted by Mona89 (Budding Member 28 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Hitchhiking Europe with no money at all is a bad, bad, bad idea. No idea how you got into this mess of having no money at all even though you work.. not going to ask either but it isn't going to be easy to survive in Europe.
Unemployment is high in Italy, France, Spain, Portugal etc so they have their own people to look after.

I am from Austria and we have low unemployment (I think the lowest in Europe with one of the best safety nets in terms of social security) but you will need to speak at least basic German to get by.

Try to get yourself a job before leaving the UK or you will be finding yourself homeless under a bridge somewhere in Europe :(

6. Posted by annkaddley (Budding Member 3 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

Sounds like an adventure. It will probably take a few months to get the hang of it. I am not an expert on Europe but I have some friends who have had some luck cycling and sneaking into parks to camp in hammocks.
Check out WOFFING and couchsurfing for free accommodation/food but try and not take advantage of these people who are willing to open their houses to us vagabonds. In terms of freebies, check online. Churches and shelters can often tell you where you can get free meals. There are traveler specific job boards online (internet is free in most library's) You could try working at a backpackers in exchange for board etc.
There are lots of options out there, but its not going to be easy. Good luck, I hope you have an amazing adventure.

7. Posted by CheersT (Inactive 2578 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

"... Churches and shelters can often tell you where you can get free meals..."

That's really scrapping the bottom of the bucket, being a freeloading traveller taking food out of the mouths of the truly destitute.


8. Posted by KellieBarnes (Travel Guru 813 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

I agree, definitely check out the WWOOFing opportunities. There's a bit more about how it works here:

9. Posted by thuymy (Inactive 5 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

good luck. Nothing we can't do.

10. Posted by Mona89 (Budding Member 28 posts) 3y Star this if you like it!

I agree with Terry. Food banks should be for the needy not travellers who cannot really afford to travel hence rely on freebies for everything. Only saying.