It’s almost summer! Many of us have been waiting a long time to crawl out of our igloos and finally enjoy some fun in the sun. With summer comes one of the oldest of American traditions, summer vacation. In this post I will share with you the 7 best ways to save on summer vacation. Enjoy!
HAVE A PLAN – If you follow my blog, you know how big I am on planning. It’s no different when it comes to vacationing. Have a plan early on so that you aren’t scrambling at the last minute and making hasty moves that negatively affect your checking account. Set up a budget for your vacations and contribute to it year-round so that you aren’t tempted to use credit cards to make your vacation a reality.
RENT CARS A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY – You may have used Uber or Lyft when you’ve been out of town (or had too many cocktails). There are similar services available for renting a car. Check out TURO and FLIGHTCAR before you rent from a big rental car chain. Many times, you can get a car for much cheaper. Also, you may be able to make some money by offering up your own car while you are away.
DITCH THE HOTEL – Check out sites like VRBO and AirBnB. These sites allow you to rent from homeowners rather than hotel chains. Oftentimes, you can get these places for cheaper than a hotel and you get more space. You’re also helping out a local family in your vacation destination, which I think is pretty cool!
LIMIT DINING OUT – We know that dining out can get expensive. Try your best to pack food for your trip or go grocery shopping if you can. If you ditch the hotel, you likely will have a kitchen in your rental. Some folks have told me that they will make it a point to only eat out once a day and will make sure it is for lunch. There are many strategies here, but don’t spend exorbitant amounts on dining out, it’s not what you’ll remember about your trip anyway. (If you must dine out, click here for my 7 tips on saving when dining out)
STAYCATION/DAYCATION – If your budget isn’t conducive to a long, expensive trip this year, find something local to do. Is there something that you’ve always wanted to do that can be done in a day trip? DO IT! Cross off a bucket list item that is nearby– or at least close enough that you can stay with friends or family — that won’t break the bank.
RESEARCH PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION – Planning on renting a car? It might make sense to think twice about it, especially if your destination is a large metro area. Look into the public transportation that is offered in your desired location. You may find that you don’t need your own vehicle at all.
USE TECHNOLOGY – We use technology for everything these days. Use it to your advantage when planning a summer vacation. A few sites/apps that you should check out:
- EveryTrail– find other travelers’ tips, connect with other travelers, and find fun things to do.
- FieldTripper– can help you find out about local history as well as find fun places to shop and eat.
- HappyHourFinder– you know what this helps you find. You’re welcome.
- SpotHero– find great deals on parking spaces.
Bonus Tip: If you use a service like Kayak or Orbitz to find flights and hotels, use them for search only. When you find what you’d like to book, book it directly. This makes it much easier to manage if any problems occur.