Photo of California Desert
Blog,  Budget Travel

Stranded And Homeless All In The Name Of Travel

It all started when I convinced my boyfriend to jet let or rather bus set with me from Toronto, Canada across the USA all the way to Tijuana Mexico via the San Diego border.

We were 20 years old and very foolish but oh so curious about what life was like on the other side. I didn’t have any money, he didn’t have much money but we had each other and that’s all we needed to get through the 3 week backpacking trip from hell.

First, we caught a 10 hour bus ride into NYC, we arrived at 2 in the morning with absolutely no plan, the train station officer kicked us out after a few hours and scolded for being so young and stupid.

What we packed for our trip.

No one would take us on Couch-surfing maybe it was because of our desperately needy messages but this then forced us to book a sketchy hostel in Queens with what little money we had.

It was cooler than we expected and spent a day exploring NYC doing every free activity we could. We ate cheap fast food, visited Central Park for the first time and met a cool stranger who shared his life experiences being a traveller and living in New York.

Photo of me at Central Park
Central Park 2018

NYC To California

We had a one way flight booked to LA from NJ and got a Work-away opportunity in Nevada where a friendly gay couple picked us up from the airport and had us work like SLAVES FOR DAYS in 100 degree heat.

Being from up North means we weren’t used to this kind of temperature, let alone working for hours doing back breaking work in it!

We packed our sh**t and got ready to leave but quickly realized we were in the middle of the Mojave desert with no car or cell service. We begged our hosts to take us to the nearest bus station so we could escape the torture of pooping in holes and fire ants eating at our feet everyday, they eventually obliged.

Middle of the California desert where we stayed at a workaway volunteering

Escaping The Torture…

From there we traveled to LA where a friend of a friend let us sleep on their couches in Van Nuys for a night and it just so happened that she was an actress from Young And The Restless!

Her and her husband fed us, let us relax in their outdoor Jacuzzi and she even invited us to her birthday party that was happening the next day at their house!

Photo of me sitting on a swing at the workaway.
A shot at the workaway

See You In Mexico!

The next afternoon we caught a bus to Tijuana, Mexico where we ended our wild adventure after 5 more days.

We arrived in Tijuana by bus and were warned by a few people that it was a dangerous part of the country to be in and to be extremely careful.

The first night we stayed at a hostel worst than anything I’ve ever seen before, not only were we scammed for the price it was just a less than ideal sleeping arrangement.

I booked us an Airbnb to stay in for the rest of our trip and after hours of searching on the dirt roads we finally made it!

Photo of the hostel in Mexico
This was the only photo I got at the hostel in Tijuana

The End…

We were scammed, bribed, hungry and possibly almost murdered but so desperate to see the world. Eventually we ran out of money and headed back home with many stories to tell our future children.

We did however, eat amazing food, meet amazing people and have a once in a lifetime experience.

What’s the craziest situation you’ve ever gotten into while travelling?! Let me know in the comments below!

If you wan’t to know more about how we were able to pull this all off read the blog post “5 Ways To Save Money On Travel”.

Also, if you haven’t already checked out the 19 Ways To Travel For Free PDF you can get it by singing up for the Fearless Nomad Newsletter!

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