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Old 12-23-2010, 01:47 AM   #211
halliwood
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great thread, hope to use some of this tips on some trips I plan for soon :)
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Old 06-24-2011, 08:25 AM   #212
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Originally Posted by halliwood View Post
great thread, hope to use some of this tips on some trips I plan for soon :)
+1
Thank you Jamie Z. for taking the time to put this together; and thanks to those who contributed additional ideas.
What occurs to me to add is that of learning how to make at least minor repairs to your ride, and carry tools (and some parts) sufficient to effect those repairs. From flat tires to busted cables or chains to electrical malfunctions on motor vehicles, examples can be more numerous than makes sense to prepare for. But it's good to cover the higer-probability items; that can save you a bundle over calling for professional help!
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Old 06-24-2011, 09:21 AM   #213
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This might be an old thread, but I think Jamie Z has some excellent ideas on how to travel inexpensively. It's not being cheap, it's stretching your money further for a longer trip... :)
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Old 09-26-2011, 06:32 PM   #214
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Might still work if you can find the mom and pop gas station, or service station where they still work on things. I knew a guy that went cross country in the 70's on a Triumph this way.

Stop and offer to clean the rest rooms for a tank of gas, especially at service stations, they know they can make more $$ replacing brakes then cleaning toilets.
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Old 09-28-2011, 10:55 AM   #215
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Meat suggestions

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Originally Posted by viola-tor
some other form of canned meat will have to step in, but they all sound so unappealing: Spam, vienna sausages, and the "chicken" that's ground to a mush and reassambled in the can... yikes. Well, this summer will be on the cheap, so I'll experiment and get back to yas.

Although more expensive than tuna, I'm partial to sardines in mustard sauce. Whenever I make a mid-day stop at a grocery store, I'll buy a tin of those (four or five fish per can) plus a bit of deli-sliced cheese and a roll or two; combined they make for a nutritional meal that tastes more expensive than it really is.


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hey forget the can, man!

if you gotta pack some meat along, think dried sausage, like pepperoni or some such Italian dried meat. i think there about 4-5 varieties- most not as greasy as pepperoni. and they come in a plastic or cloth wrapper, so less to toss, & lighter too without the can! dried meat can be opened resealed and eaten again and again, maybe for days on end if it's not super hot.


of course if you're doing a hit-and-run at a store just to buy lunch and move on, then no matter...
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Old 09-28-2011, 11:25 AM   #216
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Cool2 Barter For It

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Originally Posted by PFFOG View Post
Might still work if you can find the mom and pop gas station, or service station where they still work on things. I knew a guy that went cross country in the 70's on a Triumph this way.

Stop and offer to clean the rest rooms for a tank of gas, especially at service stations, they know they can make more $$ replacing brakes then cleaning toilets.
centuries old idea, but STILL GREAT! the barter system.
whaddya got? whaddya got that someone else needs?
now, whadda THEY got? something that YOU need?
BINGO.
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Old 02-10-2012, 10:44 AM   #217
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I just finished going through this thread and there's a lot of good tidbits in here. Worth another bump for others to see.
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:21 AM   #218
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I just finished going through this thread and there's a lot of good tidbits in here. Worth another bump for others to see.
yeah....this is a great thread!! thanx for the bump!!
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Old 02-21-2012, 02:18 PM   #219
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Originally Posted by bgoodsoil View Post
exhaust pipe hot dogs





How did this never get discussed? Awesome... I'm gonna make some 'header dogs' (or brauts)! Great way to make friends and start conversation too... roll into camp and unstrap an 8 pack of sizzling dogs off of your bike. "Who's hungry!?"
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Old 03-15-2012, 03:06 AM   #220
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Awesome thread! Appreciate all the advice/stories/suggestions.

I am looking forward to using a lot of these camping and food ideas on my upcoming trip to Mexico in April!
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Old 03-16-2012, 09:57 AM   #221
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Eat light on the road. Drink water only. Look at some trips as a chance to see how frugal you can be. I find that by back packing at least once per year for three or four days, helps remind me of how going LIGHT is pretty darn cool.
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Old 04-15-2012, 08:52 PM   #222
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Bump for a deserving thread

It's not about cheap, or even frugal. Thrifty, maybe. Deliberate simplicity. Need reduction.
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Old 04-17-2012, 04:35 AM   #223
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Laugh Super Low Budget Travel

(Sorry about the length of this post...)

I tend to be frugal out of necessity... so I apologize in advance if any of my tips offend. I've been in some spots in my life before where a $30 dive hotel room was an unattainable luxury. I'm fortunate now that I can afford a motorcycle, gasoline and insurance, but that $30 still buys a lot of gas.

I've read the whole thread, and the motorcycle-specific tips (such as where to look for free camping - I hadn't considered cemetaries or churches!) are especially appreciated. It's a great guide, and the additions by other commenters are very helpful as well.

Here are the tips I've got. I spent 6 months in Berkeley intentionally homeless in order to learn urban survival a while back, and I think I spent less than $100 that entire time. I am still a novice at meshing these techniques with a motorcycle, but they may help someone or give somebody a new idea. It's always easier to do some of these things if you're spending more than a day or two in a given location, and some of these tips are useless if you're not in a major city, but those are the places I find to be the most expensive anyways...

* An alternative to hitchhiking is Rideshare. There are a number of websites and Craigslist usually has a section for it too in each city. Pitch in a couple of bucks for gas, offer to drive if the vehicle's owner doesn't mind, and you can get some great conversation. It's a good way to "pre-screen" people... as a driver you are assured that your passenger at least knows how to use a computer and you can find out a bit about them beyond looks before you agree to the ride. I've driven from Toronto to Vancouver with a passenger this way, it really helped with gas costs and sanity.

* BLM public land, if you can find it, has some pretty lax regulations regarding length of stay (14 days is common), and rarely requires any sort of camping permit or fees as long as it is undeveloped "primitive" camping.

* Starbucks. They are everywhere, they have clean single-serving bathrooms where you can wash up, and they almost always have comfy chairs, outlets and free wifi. I always buy something small to not abuse their hospitality, and I've never been bothered even if I hang out for hours. Libraries are also great for charging devices and wifi, plus you might accidentally learn something.

* Food not Bombs has been mentioned, they are a great organization. Find information on FNB in your area here. Most often these are run by "free spirited" types, if you chat up the people serving, you can sometimes network your way into free temporary lodging, but I'm a quasi-hippie so your mileage may vary. I spent three awesome nights sleeping in a wigwam built in a backyard this way. You can also usually find out where/when they cook at if you want to volunteer, it's a good way to meet more people and pay it forward, this group takes "trash food" (usually in my experience they ask the grocers for the ugly vegetables) and turns it into healthy, if bland fare for the homeless.

* Speaking of homeless, they know where everything is. If you don't look like you've got a ton of money, they're usually pretty willing to tell you where you can get whatever you need in a given city. I've found out where to get free showers, safe places to sleep, free food - soup kitchens, food pantries, churches, hare krishna temples, whatever, just by talking to them. There are a lot of folks with mental illness and substance abuse problems, but just be polite, stay away from inflammatory discussion topics, and be grateful for their advice. I've never had a truly negative encounter this way. Networking is a powerful tool, and social capital can be worth far more than money.

* Dumpster Diving. You might think it sounds gross, but I tell you, I've found some amazing things in dumpsters, and sealed containers wash off easily. It's illegal for stores to sell expired food, so if they've overpurchased something and it hits the sell by date, they chuck it and write it off as a loss. I've found over a dozen gallons of milk, 4 cases of yogurt, 10 lbs of fancy european Whole Foods cheese... There was one dumpster which was behind a bakery, continuously full of fantastic day-old bread. Did you know that many factories (such as breweries) throw away perfectly good products? Use your head, go late at night, and be a ninja. Stay out of trash compactors. You can also try going into grocery stores toward the end of the evening, explaining that you are hungry and asking if they have any expired/ugly food they're going to throw away. This is more hit and miss, as everybody is afraid of lawsuits these days.

* Abandoned Buildings. Easier by far out in the sticks, harder to manage in cities, I've squatted on more than one occasion. I'm not sure how it would work with a bike, as these tend to be in more run-down neighborhoods where I'd be concerned about theft, but if you can find a way to make it work, you've got free shelter where you're less likely to be hassled by the cops for the night. Arrive after dark, leave before dawn, obey no trespassing signs and don't make a mess. If a building is obviously abandoned, try the doors, in my experience somebody else may have had the same idea before you.

* Free Skool. Especially in larger cities, you can sometimes find free, "sliding scale", or "pay what you can" classes if you're bored. I've seen everything from yoga to juggling and sailing classes for free. Here's a list. You can sometimes find the same sorts of things on Craigslist events, or by going to a natural foods store and looking at the bulletin board full of fliers, but it's much more hit and miss. Sometimes you can find places willing to accept "work trade", meaning you spend some of your time doing something for them in exchange for something you want. I've seen more than one martial arts studio or yoga studio offer training for work trade, and I once got a free bicycle in exchange for disassembling donated bikes at a bike collective. I've networked with gardening/permaculture people and harvested tomatoes in exchange for big bags of produce. Barter rocks!

* I haven't seen anybody mention it, but a lot of wild plants are edible. Be sure of what you're picking, be mindful to not gather any plants too close to roadways (herbicides and heavy metal/chemical pollution from vehicles are common), and know how to cook them. I've been known to grab an orange hanging over a fence, climb fig trees, or gather wild greens or acorns. I find it fun to explore for these, it's like a treasure hunt! It also makes me appreciate my surroundings more, as my food does not have to come from a store. Be aware of the local laws, some places are less friendly about foraging than others.

* I'd like to echo the comments about the kindness of strangers. Many people are willing to try to help as long as you appear slightly in need but don't appear threatening. I've had a lady at a cafe notice that a friend of mine and I were eying the pastries but not buying anything - she approached us later and offered us what remained of the entire case as it was the end of the night and the food would end up in the trash otherwise. We gave the extras to the homeless people on the street, who were ecstatic about free muffins and scones. We are often taught in this society that other people are inherently out to screw us over and while that may be true in many cases, there's definitely something to be said by giving others the benefit of the doubt. You may be pleasantly surprised.

* The less you plan, the more awesome things will tend to find you instead.

I've also found this site useful for travel tips: http://www.digihitch.com/ - it's a forum for hitchhikers, vagabonds, and the like.
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Old 04-17-2012, 10:03 AM   #224
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Originally Posted by Feyala View Post
* BLM public land, if you can find it, has some pretty lax regulations regarding length of stay (14 days is common), and rarely requires any sort of camping permit or fees as long as it is undeveloped "primitive" camping.
Welcome to Utah.

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* The less you plan, the more awesome things will tend to find you instead.
Amen to that.

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I've also found this site useful for travel tips: http://www.digihitch.com/ - it's a forum for hitchhikers, vagabonds, and the like.
Nice one. Thanks.
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Old 07-11-2012, 12:47 PM   #225
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Thanks for the tips!

Hey, I just read through the article and several of the posts, and I want to thank everyone for the great ideas. I'm looking forward to making my first almost-cross-country ride in a couple of years (Route 66 in 2015), and many day trips to try things out. I'll definitely be watching and reading for more tips, and sharing things I've found as helpful.
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