10 Must-Know Websites For Student Travel Discounts

10 Mist-Know Websites For Student Travel Discounts

really wanted to start this post with yet another anecdote from my study abroad trip to Ireland, but I think I’ve yakked on and on about it a little too much, so I’ll start with this instead: like pretty much every other college student out there, I’ll be damned if I’m stuck in my home state during spring break this year. Spring break is the prime time for mid-semester travel. Okay, it’s the only time for mid-semester travel since universities don’t give us any other time off during the spring, so I guess by default it’s the prime time. Anyway, what better way to relax and reward yourself for all the hard work you’ve been doing so far than by taking a trip somewhere for a few days?

I know, easier said than done, right? My friends and I are planning our getaway, and we’re not really trying to drop $1,000 on a 4-day trip, so we feel ya. So if you’ve ever wanted to be like those people who can snag $160 plane tickets for $100, and somehow sniff out the super cheap but non-crappy hotel rooms, I’m here to help.

In my quest for, well, being one of those people, I’ve come across some great (and legit!) sites that actually provide college students with discounts on flights, hotels, and other travel essentials. Like I said, I want to enjoy my spring break without coming back to a double-digit balance in my account, so we’re pretty much in the same boat here. So if you’re really adamant about saving money on travel, check out my recommendations below. Also while you’re at it, take a look at my post on How To Save Money In College for tips on smart spending.

1. StudentUniverse

This is the website I visit most frequently for discounted flights because the site is so easy to navigate, and by creating an account you can receive updates and deals during holidays. StudentUniverse was a sponsor at the 2017 College Fashion Week and I had the pleasure of working with them there, so if you’re curious check out my post!

2. STA Travel

STA Travel is great for flights, hotels, and discounted tours. I also love that they have special pages for information on securing bus and railroad passes, so you’ll be able to easily use public transportation in the city you visit. This site definitely makes sure you have fun things to do in the places you visit—from a Beer Tour of Belgium to a cruise around Turkey. I may or may not have my eye on a pizza tour of Naples package. 😉

3. EF Ultimate Break

I’m ALWAYS telling my parents, my friends, my friends’ dogs, and anyone who will listen about this website because OMG, the travel packages are awesome. I seriously always feel slightly more cultured just reading through the itineraries on the site. The packages usually include tours through several cities over the course of a few weeks (Example: 10 days through Germany, Italy and Switzerland). You can take their “quiz” to get matched to packages depending on where in the world you want to go. I’ve seen packages priced at around $2,000-$3,000 but that’s pretty good for three weeks in six different cities—that’s HALF the price that I paid to study abroad for three weeks, FYI!!!!!! Did I mention you also get group discounts?

The only thing about this site is that trips fill up FAST, so I HIGHLY recommend booking trips at least ONE YEAR IN ADVANCE. Yep, you read me right. So you better get going!

4. Travel Cuts

Travel Cuts is kind of similar to StudentUniverse in terms of what’s offered, and it’s also pretty easy to navigate. They do feature discounted trips from different companies, though, so that’s definitely worth looking through.

5. CheapOair

CheapOair isn’t just for searching up flights—you can also look at hotels, car rentals, and vacation deals. Plus, they provide TripAdvisor ratings on all listings for hotels you search for. I was pretty impressed by the flight prices I saw on this site (I low-key was about to book one straight away!) so definitely give this site a shot.

6. Student City

The vibe of this site is very “spring break,” which is good if that’s what you’re using it for! There’s so much useful information on this site, including trips, bucket list ideas, and seasonal travel ideas. And, they offer a way for you to travel for free if you’re willing to do a little work and if you’re really good at convincing people they need to take a vacation.

7. OneTravel

OneTravel allows you to find discounts on anything from just flights or just hotels to packages including flights and hotels and flights, hotels, and car rentals. This is great if you plan on staying within the United States. This site isn’t specifically for students but it’s a great site to know.

8. Travelation

Travelation is pretty much just like OneTravel, and it’s also not student-specific but it’s a good site to check out for cheap flights. And they always list featured “domestic deals” on their homepage if you’re thinking about staying within the U.S.

9. Groupon

Okay, seriously, what can’t you use Groupon for! It’s great for booking all-inclusive trips. My friends once booked a 6-day trip to the Dominican Republic for around $600—airfare and resort all included! Browse through their deals but keep in mind that they do expire and you sometimes will have to book something closer to the date you wish to travel.

10. Trivago

I’m pretty sure everyone has seen the Trivago commercials, or at least have heard of it, but it’s great for comparing hotel prices so if you’re really adamant about sticking to a strict budget, you don’t have to open up a million tabs to compare deals.

I really hope this round-up of links helps at least one person book an awesome, affordable, non-bank-breaking trip this year! If you know of any other sites that offer great discounts on student travel (or travel in general) email me or feel free to comment them below!

Also related to travel: How To Be Money Smart While Traveling Abroad, The Ultimate Study Abroad Packing List, 6 Travel Experiences Every Millennial Should Have

What trips are you looking forward to in 2018? 

3 Workouts That Are Easy Enough To Do At Home Everyday

3 Easy Workouts You Can Do Everyday At Home

By now it’s no secret that I absolutely detest winter. So you best believe that I do everything in my power to avoid icy streets and frozen toes. Even though that means that I get to spend some quality time with my bed this winter break, I’ve actually also been spending some time trying to stay in shape. Yep, right from the comfort of my living room…or, my parents’ living room, but you get the point.

Working out is something I’ve been struggling to do continuously this past semester, but I decided that I didn’t want to wait until the break was over, or even wait until the new year to start doing what I can to jump start a more active lifestyle. So for I’ve been trying out a combination of easy to do exercises that I’ve found online, and I’ve rounded up my five favorites so you can try them out for yourself if you also want to get started on any fitness goals. The best part is that they fit so easily into my daily routine.

I don’t usually post about fitness but something tells me I’m going to have a lot more wellness posts on this blog this year, so if you’re into that then yay! Come join me on my journey! I don’t have an elliptical or workout studio or mini gym in my house, so there’s nothing about doing reps on any machines and stuff. I do have dumbbells, a yoga mat, and a stability ball, and while they aren’t required for these workouts, they can help. So if you don’t have these items at home, no worries.

1. Jump squats.

Unpopular opinion: I actually like doing squats. When I took boxing classes, we learned how to actually do squats properly and it just stuck with me (make sure those knees don’t go past those toes!). The jumping part adds a little bit of cardio, so you’ll definitely be sweating. You don’t need that much room, so you can do these anywhere.

Read also: How To make Time For Going To The Gym In College

2. Burpees. 

I know people HATE burpees, but trust me when I say that they are the ultimate full-body workout if you can’t actually go to the gym. Hell, even when I do go to the gym I still do a few sets of burpees because they’re actually that beneficial. You have to engage your entire body when doing burpees, and being mindful of your form and the way you engage each muscle group when doing them can give you optimal results. I like to go at an even pace—not too fast—so I can pay attention and jump all the way up, contract my abs when I go down, and hop all the way out so I get the most out of it. Yes, burpees suck at first, but if you commit to doing even 20 a day, you’ll notice that your legs will feel stronger and your arms may look a little more lean (I did 20 burpees everyday for 30 days in a row and found this out the fun way!).

3. Leg raises. 

I like using my stability ball for these, but if you prefer not to or don’t have one, they can be done without. I basically lie on my back and grip the sides of the ball with my legs. I raise the ball as I raise my legs, and it’s really good for the abs! Even without the ball, these are great for working your stomach. You can even lay on top of a yoga mat if you don’t want to be on the hard ground. I’ve seen other people do these where they can lift the ball all the way into the air and grab it with their hands like this, but I’m not quite there yet so I’m going to keep working at it until I am.

Read also: 20 Ways To Be Healthier In College

These are pretty much the main three exercises I incorporate into any workout I do, and they’re really effective and easy to do right at home. Of course, results don’t happen overnight (though a six pack at the snap of my fingers would be nice) but starting small and working with these until you’re comfortable can make a big difference overall. I’m really confident that I’m going to go back to school feeling stronger and maybe looking slightly more toned.

Do you know of any other easy at-home exercises? Let me know in the comments! 

How To Create A Routine And Actually Stick To It

I think the last time I really had a solid daily routine that I actually stuck to was sometime sophomore year. Junior year got a bit crazy and I tried to hang onto my rituals of going to the gym, making morning smoothies, and doing face masks—sometimes failing, sometimes succeeding. Then fall semester senior year was the absolute worst because everything just fell apart and I could hardly uphold any routine for more than a week.

If you’re like me and need a solid daily routine to reach your goals and actually feel like you’re accomplishing things, then it can feel overwhelming when you break part of your routine or don’t do it at all. I always feel like I’ve set myself back and I’m now even further from my goals.

Since the semester ended and I’ve been home for two weeks, I’ve had some time to chillax (a.k.a. sit on my bum and watch Impractical Jokers all day). I also have a few fitness and reading goals I’d like to reach before the spring semester starts, and, personally, when I haven’t been doing much it can be easy for me to get stuck in a lazy mindset. Then, I literally never get anything done! So, I created a little routine for myself, and I’ve actually been good about sticking to it after such a long time.

So, I decided to create a post that will help you stick to any routine you’re trying to nail. Whether you need a routine to keep you organized and on track, or you want to avoid getting lazy, read on!

1. Create a routine that’s realistic. 

Reading three books and exercising for five hours everyday sounds awesome, but do you think you’ll actually have time to do all that? Starting off small is definitely something to keep in mind when creating a realistic routine. There’s nothing wrong with being ambitious and pushing yourself, but if you try to make a routine that only a superhuman can conquer and you don’t get things right the first time, you may feel very discouraged.

One of my biggest goals for winter break, and for 2018, is to exercise more and get more toned. I know damn well that I wouldn’t leave my house in -20 degree weather to go to the gym, so adding an 8a.m. gym workout to my routine is not doable at all for me right now. Maybe down the line when I really get into things, but certainly not now. So, I’ve been checking out some online exercise circuits that give me both cardio and strength training. So everyday, I can take just 30 minutes to workout with dumbbells, do some squats, and other activities all while I watch TV, and it’s actually very fun.

2. Write it down. 

I always feel like things are more official and more organized for me when I write them down, so if you’re the same way, this can definitely help. And, you can really go crazy with it, too. If you love designing things, hop on Photoshop or Canva and create your very own super pretty, super colorful schedule with your routine in it. You can print it out and hang it on your wall, in your dorm room, or glue it to the front page of your planner so you’ll always see it. Plus, things always look more enticing to do when they’re colorful, so you may actually get excited to get things started. You can also look into habit journals and routine trackers as an alternative.

3. Wake up early. 

I am, by no means, a morning person—I actually hate getting up and being woken up at the ass crack of dawn, especially during the winter when I just want to hide under the covers all day. But I always feel more accomplished when I wake up early. There were so many times this semester when I wanted to go to the gym in the morning, do some yoga, shower, get dressed up all nice, and hit Starbucks so I can do work the rest of the day, but as soon as I found myself waking up at noon, I started feeling like there was NO TIME for the gym and all that other stuff, and I immediately just wanted to get dressed and get out of the room so I could work. That was certainly responsible for many destroyed attempts at a solid routine.

Remember when I said sophomore year was probably the last time I actually stuck to a badass routine? Yeah, it was because I actually woke up early to get things done. In the time between 8a.m. and noon when my friends and people I lived with were fast asleep, I’d be up working out, visiting my advisers, running my errands, having breakfast, and studying, and it felt fantastic. Speaking of early, check out my post on How To Prepare For Morning Classes for tips on feeling energized for those 8a.m.’s!

Of course, if you’re going to wake up early, it should be understood that you need to go to bed early, too, and you can do that by creating a nighttime routine for yourself that works. Maybe you need to stretch a little before bed, or maybe before you turn in for the night is your perfect time for going through your skincare routine. I love reading a little before I go to bed, so I always do that until I get tired.

4. Set reminders for yourself. 

Use your phone, or your calendar, or your planner. And if there’s an app that you swear keeps your head on your shoulders, use that, too (P.S., I also have a post on the Best Totally Free Apps For College Students, so be sure to check that out!). Creating little reminders is definitely helpful when you’re just first starting out, but once you really get the hang of things, your routine becomes second nature and you may not even need phone reminders anymore.

5. Create a routine with a buddy. 

Getting a friend to join you in your quest for, well, whatever you hope to gain by doing a routine, makes things way more fun. Having someone by your side to push you along is really encouraging, and you feel like you’re making progress with someone.

I love having my friends by my side, but there are some things that I think I perform better at when I’m alone—like yoga or working out. I just feel like I can go at my own pace and I don’t have to feel obligated to try a different machine because my friend wants to try a different machine, or leave early because my friend wants to leave early. Try it out and see what activities you enjoy doing with friends and what activities you may have to fly solo on.

Read also: How To Balance School, A Job + A Social Life In College

6. Remind yourself of your goals. 

Always remind yourself why you’re putting yourself through the trouble of waking up at 6a.m. to start your routine. Is it because you feel more productive? Do you want to feel like you have better control over something? Do you have things to do that won’t get done unless you make a schedule for doing them? No matter what your reason is, remind yourself that everyday you’re taking steps toward achieving that goal. Keep a positive attitude, and you’ll get there!

What are your tips for sticking to a routine?