Amelia Laing After graduating from Kalamazoo College in 2010, Amelia worked as a janitor and convenience store clerk to save money to move to Denver, where she now lives. She enjoys blogging for iTriage, a free smartphone healthcare application, and in her spare time she keeps up her French and Spanish skills by reading the classics. Her travels have taken her to five continents, including Australia, Europe, Africa, Asia, and North America.
Volunteering overseas can be a great opportunity. It can allow you to do some good in the world, explore a new culture, meet new people, and even beef up your resume. Of course, once you start researching what it involves, it’s easy to become quickly discouraged. Who knew that doing good could cost so much?
But it doesn’t have to. Whether you’re taking a gap year after school, revisiting your days studying abroad, or just want a change of pace, there are lots of ways to avoid paying exorbitant amounts to volunteer abroad. In fact, if you play your cards right, you might even be able to go for free.
Healthcare is expensive in the United States. In 2011, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) found that the average American pays nearly $8,000 per year for healthcare – the greatest amount of any of the 34 countries surveyed. Despite the hefty price tag, though, Americans have above average rates of obesity and infant mortality, and a lower life expectancy.
Paris, France has been called many things: “The City of Light,” “The City of Love”…unfortunately, it may also be called “The City of Potentially Bank-Draining Vacations.”
Millions of tourists visit Paris every year, and many spend far more money than they need to or plan to. Even though Paris consistently ranks as one of the world’s most expensive cities thanks to its unique pedestrian feel, its many parks, and its wonderful public transportation system, there are many ways to get a taste of France’s famous joie de vivre without spending exorbitant sums.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, almost 50 million Americans are without health insurance. Many of the uninsured use emergency rooms as a last resort for their health needs, since the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) requires that hospitals provide emergency healthcare treatment to whoever needs it. But neglecting routine care is not only unhealthy for your body, it’s unhealthy for your wallet, as a single emergency room visit can cost thousands of dollars.
Even if you’re uninsured, there are ways to get affordable medical care. In fact, there are a multitude of resources that can help you find the care you need.
After I graduated from college in 2010, I worked an average of 70 hours per week as a janitor and a night clerk at a convenience store. After nine months of hard work, I had saved up enough money to move to Denver. I applied – along with hundreds of others – for a job at a tech start-up company. Shortly thereafter, I learned the great news that I had gotten the job.
I didn’t get the job because I went to an amazing school, or because I am great with computers (I’m not), or because I was exceedingly qualified in comparison to the other applicants. According to my boss, the determining factor in my hiring was that I am fluent in the Spanish language.
The content on MoneyCrashers.com is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as professional financial advice. Should you need such advice, consult a licensed financial or tax advisor. References to products, offers, and rates from third party sites often change. While we do our best to keep these updated, numbers stated on this site may differ from actual numbers. We may have financial relationships with some of the companies mentioned on this website. Among other things, we may receive free products, services, and/or monetary compensation in exchange for featured placement of sponsored products or services. We strive to write accurate and genuine reviews and articles, and all views and opinions expressed are solely those of the authors.
Advertiser Disclosure: The credit card offers that appear on this site are from credit card companies from which MoneyCrashers.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site, including, for example, the order in which they appear on category pages. MoneyCrashers.com does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers, although best efforts are made to include a comprehensive list of offers regardless of compensation. Advertiser partners include American Express, U.S. Bank, and Barclaycard, among others.