No matter how well you prepare for your vacation, there’s a really good chance you’ll walk away feeling like you spent way too much money. Vacations have a way of draining our pockets much faster than we’d like. There are, however, several simple yet effective ways to save money on vacation.
Here are five of the more popular money saving ideas for your next trip:
Take advantage of off-season rates
Working the off-season is a wonderful way to save cash on your next vacation. What is so cool about the off-season is that you can save on your lodging, various attractions and gas due to lighter traffic if you are driving. Virtually everything about your vacation will be cheaper if you go during the off-season. Did I mention less people and crowds?
I remember when I used to live in Phoenix. During the summer, regular temps reach around 110 – 115 every. single. day. Who wants to vacation in that? To draw tourists, many luxury resorts deeply discount their prices. You can lounge around some really great pools, complete with water slides for the kids for half the price.
Cook for yourself
Eating out for every single meal will cost you a fortune no matter where you are visiting. Instead, consider these options:
- Book a hotel with a kitchenette
- Book a vacation rental
Either way, you’ll be able to cook your own food, instead of eating out. This alone can save you a bundle.
If you’re traveling with several families, everyone can pitch in and buy groceries. Then take turns cooking and cleaning up so everyone will still enjoy a vacation free of work.
It took us awhile to learn, but now when my family of six vacations, we always reserve a vacation rental. Not only do we save money on eating out, but there’s usually more than one bathroom, which makes getting out and about in the morning much quicker. There’s more room to move around so our boys aren’t bouncing off the walls quite so much. And there’s usually a washer/dryer which means we can pack less.
Which brings me to my next money saving tip…
Airlines are charging for everything nowadays. If you’re flying to your vacation destination, be sure to keep your packing to a minimum. Many airlines allow only one checked bag, or you can expect to pay a hefty baggage free. Invest in a maximum size carry-on (check with your airline for size restrictions) and try packing as much as you can into that.
If you do have to check a bag, be sure to stay away from over-sized bags and pack light, as overweight suitcases will result in a fee, even with airlines offering free checked baggage.
Take public transportation
If you’re flying instead of driving and the area you are visiting offers great public transportation, consider forgoing the car rental. If you are in an area that has a subway, transit station, bus line or train, you can save a ton of cash. It can actually be quite liberating to not have to worry about gas, traffic and driving. Save some money while you let someone else carry you around for a change.
Book everything you can ahead of time
This is a great money saving tip that people rarely take advantage of. Book ahead! You will save money and you will get the room, flight and location you are wanting. Never wait until the last minute and find yourself forced to accept a bad deal. This alone will save you a fortune.
Saving money on vacation is really a matter of thinking ahead, following through and comparison shopping. Take advantage of these money saving tips and you just might have a little money left in your pocket when it’s all said and done.