You Don’t Have to be Rich to Travel: 9 Tips for DIY Travel Planning Retirees.

Carol Kubota
5 min readSep 17, 2021
The gateway to travel (Carol Kubota)

“Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” — Maya Angelou.

“You must be rich to travel .” says an acquaintance who walks her dog at the park.

“No, I am not rich.” I reply

I choose to spend the money I have on traveling rather than redecorating my house or eating out every day of the week. I don’t play golf or tennis. I don’t smoke, drink, or take drugs. I am healthy and able to walk long distances.

If you are reading this, you must be retired. What do you do during your free time? Is your passion for traveling?

Now, you have the time to plan your adventures. Let’s do it!

Ditch the travel companies

Travel companies charge double if you are a solo traveler. Travel companies must pay their employees, and therefore you pay a higher cost. The Internet has made it easy to plan your vacation. It takes time and patience, and you have both.

Travel in “off” season

Accommodations and airfare are cheaper, and lines are shorter, no screaming children, and people are friendlier. Skip summer and holiday travel. Every day is vacay time.

Do your research

Where do you want to go? What do you want to do? Make a list of the places you want to visit. Check out travel books from the public library. Purchase books in a bookstore. Order a coffee or tea and read travel magazines and travel books before deciding which ones you want to buy. Order two cookies and get one for free at Barnes and Noble after your purchase, not before, or you won’t get the free cookie. Take notes on the information you get. Check out the millions of travel blogs that give free advice and post pictures of their travels like this one.

Book your flight

Before you buy a ticket, check out the airfares on four or five sites. You might find a cheaper flight with Expedia, Kayak, or Orbitz. Review the different seat types: Basic is more affordable but doesn’t include your bags. You will…