10 Ways to Save Money on Your Summer Vacation
Vacations are a great time to blow off some steam and also splurge a bit. However, if you don’t watch your spending, things can unravel pretty fast and before long, you can find may find yourself grappling with lots of credit card debts that had not been anticipated. Your well deserved vacation could end up becoming a long-term headache as you pay off your debts or try to plug in the hole in your finances. There are, however, plenty of ways in which you can save money during your summer vacations. Here is a look at some simple summer vacation hacks that you can use to squeeze in some savings:
#1 Look for great currency exchange deals
If you are exchanging a lot of money, you could end up haemorrhaging some good cash from an unfavourable exchange rate, so make sure you research the best deals that will leave more money in your pocket. Online currency exchangers generally have “happy hours” during which you can get great forex deals. Avoid exchanging your money at the airport; you’re likely to get the worst deals there.
#2 Book your vacation at the right time
Be a bit strategic in how you book your vacations. Generally, the earlier you book, the higher the likelihood that you will get some great vacation deals. Some travellers have been able to save as much as 30% on travel costs by booking at least 6 to 8 weeks in advance.
#3 Ask recommendations from locals
Don’t be “touristy” when visiting new destinations. You can get a truly authentic travel experience and save tons of money by using the services locals use. Ask locals for recommendations on places to eat, sights to see, how to travel, entertainment spots and other mundane travel activities that cost money. Don’t fall into the tourist trap!
#4 Take advantage of city passes
Some of the big cities offer city passes that allow you to see various attractions within the city for a deeply discounted price. That could save you hundreds of dollars that you could have used on various sightseeing tours. Couple this with online tour guides and you’ll be in the know on the cheap.
#5 Use Airbnb
Many people still cherish the comfort, convenience and novelty of staying in a 4 or 5 star-rated hotel but if you are running on a tight budget, you could save a lot of money by opting for airbnb accommodation. Of course, that may mean doing your own cooking and laundry but the experience also gives you the local touch that you are unlikely to find in many of the leading hotels where the environment is all glossy and touristy. Plus, you don’t have to worry about that hotel mini fridge.
#6 Travel during the off season
If your schedule permits, traveling during the off season is probably the best way to experience your preferred holiday destination. The costs will be low and you don’t have to grapple with a huge tourist crowd vacationing at the same destination. You are also likely to get a quality and more personalized service at hotels when there are fewer guests around.
#7 Travel in groups
You can join travel groups in your city to and collectively negotiate deeply discounted deals on air travel, accommodation and sightseeing tours in your destination city. Many travel providers are often willing to offer generous discounts when there is scale.
#8 Book your tickets at the right time
Did you know that there are specific days and hours when you are likely to score cheap air ticket deals? This is likely to be during the afternoons and midweek. Research on airline ticket pricing has shown that Tuesday afternoon is generally the best time to book an air ticket. Avoid booking your ticket during weekends as you are likely to pay a higher price for both air travel and accommodation.
#9 Choose a convenient location for your accommodations
If you are planning to spend your vacation exploring the various sights and sounds in your destination, choose an accommodation that is close to these attractions. Transport costs may appear cheap but if you will be visiting numerous spots, it adds up pretty quickly.
#10 Use different travel search engines
A flight to a destination might cost $700 on Expedia and probably $200 less on another travel search engine such as FareCompare.com. Try to be a little savvy when using the travel search engines so as to grab the best deals.
When searching for a flight, use private browsing or delete cookies before carrying out another search. You may not notice it, but prices will generally increase when you carry out multiple searches for the same route. It’s just the way the travel booking engines are designed to maximize profits for airlines, but it shouldn’t be at your expense.