I love to travel. In fact I try to plan a trip every month or two. One way I make this affordable when not using points is to use google flights to find deals .
Google flights has a great explore feature that lets you look at flights for the entire globe from your home airport and find the cheapest options
You can look at the next 6 months or put in specific dates. You can also pick airlines, duration, etc. I have booked flights to all over the world by seeing a great deal on this site and going for it.
If you can be flexible on dates you can really save. You can also track flights to see if the price drops and buy when it does.
When you use the site look for the green prices, these are the deals!