For many families, travel is a highlight of the year. But it’s also very expensive. And if you want to enjoy traveling more and spend less time stressing about the cost, you’d be wise to rethink your approach to how you plan trips in the future. Here are a few powerful cost-saving tips:
Create a Budget
A travel budget doesn’t sound sexy, but it’s something that every family should have.
If there is still time for planning your vacation, think of setting your traveling budget. Important note: it should be realistic! “Travel can be expensive, so developing a comprehensive budget is a great idea,” as Howto mentions. “You may also need to set aside money from your typical day-to-day expenses so you’ll have enough. Work out a regular amount of money to set aside for your travel expenses and begin saving as soon as possible.”
Once you’re on vacation, the preset budget will guide you when it comes to spending and help set vacation priorities.
The sooner you start budgeting, the faster you can get your finances in order and plan a realistic trip that’s both affordable and enjoyable.
Choose the Right Accommodations
Transportation and accommodations are going to be your two most expensive categories. But what if you could combine them and save? Well, there’s a way! And it involves an RV.
According to Allstar Coaches, a family of six can rent a luxury RV for seven days and six nights for less than $2,000. And when you compare that to the typical cost of transportation and lodging, this makes RV travel roughly 50 percent less expensive than traditional travel.
If you’ve never taken an RV trip, you’re in for a treat. It’s one of the most unique bonding experiences you’ll have together. Give it a shot and see what you think. It might become your new family tradition.
When flying, make sure you’re intentional about how and what you pack. Checked baggage can cost a family hundreds of dollars on a roundtrip flight. Whenever possible, only bring carry-on luggage. It’s more realistic than you think!
One way to maximize the space in your carry-on is to use something called packing cubes.
“Packing cubes, also known as compression cubes, are small bags that you can compress your clothes and other travel essentials into before zipping them up,” one travel blogger explains. “Not only do they keep your clothes organized, but they can also squeeze large items into a much smaller space.”
You can also pack stuff in your personal item (such as a purse, briefcase, or small backpack). Get creative and don’t be afraid to leave a few things at home so that you can avoid checking luggage.
Stop Eating Out
Over the course of a weeklong vacation, it can cost a family of four somewhere around $600 to eat breakfast and lunch at restaurants. And while we’re all for splurging on dinner and trying local delicacies, cutting back on the first two meals of the day can save you some serious cash.
Rather than eating breakfast and lunch at restaurants, try shopping at local markets and enjoying picnics. You can usually eat for pennies on the dollar this way. Bonus points if you can find a hotel with breakfast included!
Enjoy Free Activities
There will always be certain tourist attractions that cost money. And if you’re going to travel all the way to a big city or major destination, you don’t want to skimp on experiencing the trademark sights and sounds. But there are also plenty of free and low-cost options to supplement your itinerary.
For example, did you know that most major cities have some sort of free walking tour available? They generally run on a predictable schedule and can be used to see a lot of the city in a condensed period of time. You might want to tip a few bucks at the end, but it’s worth it!
Save Thousands On Your Next Trip
Who says you have to take out a second mortgage on your house just to plan a vacation? Why can’t you pay cash and keep your savings account intact?
By following the tips outlined in this article, you can see the world and forge powerful bonding experiences with your family – all without breaking the bank. Dream big, be smart, and love every second you have together!