Traveling without money

We want to help you to live a life in the gift and use less money or live even moneyless.
If you are traveling between communities, sometimes you have to find accomodation, or something to eat :)
Here we collect tricks and ressources you can use to travel in a sustainable and almost moneyless way to the next community, or for the times when you are not volunteering in sustainable communities :) Please add your ideas and changes that we can add to this list here.



It's definitely the best way to go from one place to another: you can read some tricks on the internet, but it's basically an art you learn with experience, and after a while you won't need any informatical trick anymore; even though sometimes it's still useful to check Hitchwiki to find good spots, most of all when you have to get out from big cities.


Check, an hospitality website for cyclists, and, a cycling Community-Tour. If you can not join them, you can get inspired to start your own cycling-tour! 

Public Transport

Using public transportation just without paying a ticket is obviously not recommendable, but you can ask the driver of a bus or the people in service of a train if they would take you without ticket. They can do that and you would be their personal guest and legally not abusing the service. Just tell them about your pioneering mission of spreading gift-economy or that you dont want to use money, maybe you get a smile, or at least the next one might take you in :) Sometimes they are happy about an apple or a cookie aswell :)

Hitchhiking Boats / Sailing

You can go to the piers and ask around, you may find some free place or someone looking for crew if you are patient or lucky ;)
You can choose where you want to go, OR when you want to go… but rarely both.
So there are basically two ways to find a boat: Online, or in person. Most people do both.

You can find boats looking for people at: (german) are sites for people searching crew or crew searching a ship. It is possible to find unpaid/unpaying positions, but it helps to have some qualifications or experience.

  • Weed out the dodgy ‘seeking relationship’ skippers. It’s not hard, just read their profile well, and check the signs. If they are looking for a ‘female’ between the ages of ’18 and 35’ for a ‘friendship/relationship’ you’ll probably get the idea. There are good people on these websites, you just got to find them! Also remember, it can take a lot of time for captains to plan journeys/crew, so the more time you have up your sleeve, the better. Start looking months before you want to head off. On the other hand, some will need crew right away, so be ready to go when they are!

Starting Points

The following locations will be the easiest and best places to make contact with yacht skippers who might be considering taking crew aboard

North Pacific Ocean

Southern Californian ports from Santa Barbara to San Diego in October. Cabo San Lucas and La Paz, Mexico, at Christmas.

Hawaiian Islands

Hilo (Radio Bay), Hawaii and Lahina, Mauii from May to September in all directions. Ala Wai, Honolulu in August/September for returning TransPac racers to the USA


Liloan, Cebu Island in August/September. Hong Kong from December to April for deliveries of yachts built in Taiwan going north to the USA or south to Europe.

South Pacific Ocean

Tahiti, French Polynesia from April to September/October, Fiji in September. New Zealand, North Island at Bay of Islands in March.

Indian Ocean

Australia at Darwin in July. South Africa at Durban in December. Sri Lanka, Galle in December.

South Atlantic Ocean

South Africa at Cape Town in January/February.

North Atlantic Ocean

British and North European Ports – Lisbon/Vilamoura. (Yachts should have crossed Bay of Biscay by the end of August.) Bermuda in November and April to August. The Canary Islands, Las Palmas and Madeira, Funchal in November. Fort Lauderdale, Florida in November.


Gibraltar, Palma, Malta and many other ports from April to November.
Note: Apart from some diving charters in the Red Sea area, there is very little cruising traffic to rely on from the Mediterranean into the Indian Ocean. An inconvenient passage combined with a difficult political area reduces the flow of yachts going south. In the opposite direction, more yachts go via the Suez Canal as a convenient short cut back to Europe from the Indian Ocean – despite the inconveniences – if they do not wish to go around Africa.


St Thomas, Virgin Islands in November. Barbados/Grenada in November/December. Panama Canal – Panama Canal Yacht Club, Cristobal, and Balboa Yacht Club in March/April.

Sailing Tips

  • The best way to find a boat in person is to network network network. Hang out at the local bars (they’re sailors!), stay close by, hitchhike around, and try to meet as many people as you can. The word of mouth is huge in the yachty world, it’s all about someone who knows someone who knows someone. If you have time, get down to the cruising area just before the season begins, and stay a while (like a month or more!). Often they are great places to hangout anyway (British Virgin Islands, Majorca, Sicily…) and small communities, so you’ll be in with the crowd in no time. Be social!
  • What experience do you need? Obviously, any time at sea, courses etc… is going to help, but don’t worry if you don’t have this. I started with nothing but a love of water. A lot of sailors will want to teach you THEIR way anyway, so having a clean slate might even help. Be prepared to offer whatever you have. Think of how your skills could be useful. Medical, cooking, and engineering, all very handy! Even a good musician can be a welcome addition to a crew. Be fit, be handy, be positive. Light hearted and fun, but sensible and with lots of common sense, that’s what most skippers will be looking for.
  • Ask about money. What is it going to cost you? The most common is that you pay for your food, and they pay the rest, but keep in mind this might be more than you would normally spend on food while on the road, so make sure you ask. Some skippers will ask you to pay a few boat costs too, mooring fees or fuel. You might be able to organize a ‘work exchange’ deal, if they need varnishing or maintenance done to the boat. Maybe they are getting hauled out, put on the hard for a week, and could really use a spare pair of hands. If you’re REALLY lucky, they will pay all the costs… and once you start getting some serious sea miles, you’ll even get PAID to go sailing!
  • Finally, have a good think about if this is really for you. The idea of sailing off into the sunset might sound awesome, but try to imagine being at sea in rough weather, heeled over, raining and cold. Everything falling all over the place and never being still. Most watch schedules will mean 3-4 hours alone at night sailing the boat (after you have experience of course) and sleeping patterns are always erratic. You’ll be in a small space with several people (depending on the size of the boat, usually 3 or 4 crew on board) and not always in the best situations. You’ll need to keep your head together and be switched on almost 24hrs a day. Also, remember than more than HALF of your time on the boat will be spent anchored, moored, or docked somewhere. Usually this means working at putting the boat back together, installing new gadgets or waiting for the weather to change, and as crew you’re expected to help with this. It won’t all be high energy stuff. On a brighter not e – it IS everything you imagined… dolphins, sunsets, sustainable transport and using your hands to carry you along… if you’re up for it, it’s magical!

Sleeping / Accomodation

If you're not a turist interested in monuments and museums, but a traveller who wants to discover more about this world and the people who live on it, it's definitely worth to look for projects to spend some time in; squats, communities, project-houses, organic farms... of course, every community has different rules about visitors, some are very easy about it and some others not so much; some ask for money and some don't. Here some networks that could help you finding a place that could be good for you:

Wwoofing (Costs a little fee)
Rainbow Gatherings (for raw food rainbows, check
Nomad bases


If it's summer and you have a tent, no problem! Just find a place a bit out of the way (remember, humans are more dangerous than animals!) and you're done. A good trick is to ask the people you meet, if you can put your tent in their garden.
But if it's too cold or you don't have a tent, try one of the following options:


On Couchsurfing you can often find nice hosts, and if you check some profiles before sending couchrequests you have even more. Couchsurfing once was very nice, but it became a corporation.

BeWelcome and Trustroots are community build platforms. They respect more your privacy and usually people who join them are on average more into alternative lifestyles than Couchsurfing members.

It is propably easier to find people there, that you could get along well with. The only thing you have to remember is that sometimes, when you're travelling without many plans, Couchsurfing is not as flexible as you would like it to be, and so you should rely on something else. However, in many big cities there are last-minute groups, if you manage to find an internet connection you can post a message with your phone number even few hours earlier, and hopefully somebody will call you!

Squats: often in occupied places you can find a very welcoming and open-minded atmosphere. The only problem is that an eviction can occur when you're there

(or, even worse, when you're outside and you left all your stuff there); in these cases you can just say goodbye to all your belongings because usually police destroys everything. When you arrive try to ask to the people who live there if an eviction is likely to happen, usually most of them are predictable and they should know about it. Here a good website, with a lot of squats listed: Remember: squats are not alternative hostels for tourists: go there just if you share their values (having a contact helps a lot) and if you're interested to collaborate with them.

Drivers: when you're hitchhiking try to understand if your driver (if you trust him/her) could be able to host you; usually they're very nice and if they can

they do it, but try to make it as spontaneous as possible (“Since I'm going to spend the night in your city, could you suggest me any place where to sleep for free?”)
and NEVER force them, since they could feel in danger and this is really not nice.

Petrol stations: if you're hitchhiking on the highway and you don't want to go out from it for sleeping, try 24h open petrol stations; you won't sleep very well

(lights are of course turned on for the whole night, and often there are movies or music as well), but it's still better than sleeping outside, most of all during the winter.

Churches: if you're in a small village and you're really desperate, try to ask for the priest; you have a few chances that he's one of those few priests who still believes in the real christian message.

(for Spain) Alberge: this are public dorms where you can be hosted for a limited number of days without paying anything, and quite often there are some also in smaller cities; usually people who stay there are immigrants who arrived in the city for the first time and stay there until they find another place where to go, but nobody should object if you ask to stay there for the night (if you wanna stay for longer maybe try to find another accomodation).

In order to sleep there you have to give your personal datas to the employee, of course, so you have to have a document; and if you don't manage to find the Alberge, ask the police and they will tell you (and sometimes drive you as well!). I have personally experienced this just in Spain, but probably in other countries there will be something similar, try to ask!

Food / Eating

Foodsharing: A legal framework for fetching left over or expired food from markets, shops, institutions and events. You have to sign up, get qualified and then you can see where you can pick up food and contract new places! and open-source urban harvesting maps, mainly for fruit.

Shop-diving: You can ask for things that (organic) supermarkets or shops will throw away, because they have too much, or they are expired. You usually get food that's still good and you reduce the waste of the system. You have to look for the shops that sell food: restaurants, bakeries, bars, small supermarkets... go there around closing time (We know, it's not easy when you're travelling) and ask if there's some food left that they are going to throw away. You can say that you are travelling without money, in order to make them understand that, in any case, you wouldn't buy anything. There's one thing to say: quite often they answer that they don't have nothing, but that they can offer you something. It's up to you to accept or refuse, just remember that this way you're not reducing waste, but increasing consumption, since after giving a sandwich to you they will have to buy one more for their clients.

Market-diving: If you manage to find a market it's great, at the end of it there will probably be a lot of fruit and veggies left. Sometimes they just leave it in boxes on the ground and you can take it, sometimes you have to ask; in any case it should be quite easy...

Table-diving: In restaurants and bars there's always a lot of food left after customers leave; gently try to ask if you can have some, or just take it before waiters come, if you're sure that nobody can see you...

Dumpster-diving: very often in the garbage you can find very good stuff; check most of all in front of supermarkets and restaurants... Here is a link for good dumpsterdiving spots and technique tricks:

Hosts: even though you cannot count on it, many couchsurfers or people who host you will actually invite you dinner.

Drivers: very often if you establish a good contact with them they will invite you for lunch or, more probably, if they're carrying food in their car, they will share it with you.


If you travel this way you shouldn't actually need much money, but if you need some you can try the following options:

Busking: if you know how to play an instrument or to juggle/breakdance/be a clown you can easily raise some money; you have to find a place with many tourists and be careful about police, in many cities it's illegal and you risk a fine. The same if you want to to draw portraits, to write improvised poetries, to play a monologue, to read the future or something else. Use your phantasy!

Handicraft: if you know how to carve wood, how to build dreamcatchers or necklaces you can try to sell them to the people you meet; be careful of police, don't put a stand in the middle of Piccadilly Square!

Drivers: sometimes drivers offer you money, it's up to you to accept or refuse it.

Small jobs: ask to shop owners if they need some help; sometimes you can work for them for a few hours – but it's quite difficult, and you cannot really rely on it.

Also check out The Ultimate Guide to Traveling Without Money from

If you know other tricks please let us now!