Student Backpacking: Live the American Dream!

Summer is fast approaching and soon exams, deadlines and dissertations will seem a distant memory. You’ll be asking yourself where shall I go this summer? Well, why not try backpacking across America this year?

New York, Miami and Las Vegas are all calling! The land of the free has something for everyone, and with the newly graduated in mind, I’ve got some suggestions to make your trip unforgettable.

Once you touchdown in New York, be sure to take full advantage of public transport as taxis from New York’s JFK Airport and Newark Liberty Airport can be extremely costly. By day, a visit to the Empire State Building is a must as well as relaxing in the beautiful sun-soaked Central Park. By night, truly witness the city that never sleeps with a trip to Times Square. The lights and atmosphere are spectacular and not to be missed! A word of warning, Manhattan Island is huge so be sure to make use of the NYCE subway rather than those expensive taxis.

You’ll also find that Hostels will become your best friends. When I travelled around America my attitude to hotels and hostels changed vastly. I seriously recommend to find premium hostels at low prices. Like many world famous cities, New York is expensive but there’s always bargains to be found so don’t be put off, being a student or new graduate always means we have to scrimp and save.

Welcome to Miami! Remember to pack your sunscreen as the summer months on South Beach are scorching! The art-deco feel and red-hot Latino vibe makes this place unforgettable. Miami is very different from New York City due to the relaxed pace of life, so much so that in Miami the locals laze on the beach when the working day is done. Pick a spot to admire the beautiful people of Miami; it’s a sight for sure! Take a break from the baking sun and enjoy some half-price margaritas at one of the many beachfront restaurants. When dark falls going out for a crazy night has to be done! Choose Ocean’s Ten bar on Ocean Drive to drink and dance the night away. Miami’s an energetic place both by day and by night. We could all do with some Floridian sun right now!

Travelling around the states can be as cheap as you want it to be! I recommend flying cross-country as coaches often cost more. Try Southwest Airlines, Delta or Virgin America for the cheapest fares from New York’s JFK Airport to your destination. I also suggest you book as early as possible! Direct US domestic flights in the summer are in great demand so prices can rocket suddenly.

I always like a holiday to finish with a bang so I loved the excess of Las Vegas! Even if you’re not a big gambler visting the top casinos and placing a bet has to be done. Now I said earlier that hostels have to be your best friend whilst backpacking on a budget, but a bargain can always be found in Sin City! I stayed at the Monte Carlo Las Vegas Resort and Casino, all facilities were perfect for my trip. For only £151.00 you could get a double room at the Monte Carlo, now who said you had to scrimp whilst backpacking?! Location, Location, Location! Las Vegas has to be perfect because in my opinion it’s a once in a lifetime destination! Live your time in Vegas like a superstar! No visit to Las Vegas is complete without taking a ride on the ride called ‘Insanity’ at the top of the Stratosphere Tower! Las Vegas takes no prisoners but rewards the winners!

America has it all! Celebrate by making your American backpacking summer the best time of your life! America never leaves you, I should know that!

Joseph Harrison