Many people feel vacations are something they just can’t afford. However, going on vacation doesn’t have to mean spending a lot of money. You don’t have to get on plan and stay at fancy resorts – there are many ways to travel and have a great vacation within a budget! Whether you travel all the time or rarely do, here are some easy tips to help you get started with saving some money.
Consider all inclusive
All inclusive can sound more expensive at first, but sometimes in the long run it will save you money to pay for everything at once. A cruise, for example, includes your accommodations, transportation, food, and entertainment. Depending on the time or year and location, I’ve seen 7 day cruises for as low as $500 per person for an inside stateroom.
Stay close to home
Odds are there are plenty of places within a day’s drive that you haven’t seen yet. Take the time to explore one of those for a long weekend. I took a 6 hour train ride out to Pittsburgh and got to see many new places in a weekend.
If you know what you expect, you also know what costs to expect. Don’t be thrown off by the prices of food in the area, or how much admission is to a place you are visiting. The more you know in advance the better able you are to plan a budget and decide what is most important during your vacation.
Make your own food
This is mostly feasible if you have a hotel room with a small kitchen area. Just like at home, making your own meals will save you a lot of money over eating out every night. Pasta dishes are especially easy, affordable, and filling meals. Even if you don’t have a kitchen, consider stopping by a grocery store for sandwich materials and snacks to get you through the day.
Stay at budget hotels
Budget doesn’t have to mean bad. You can find affordable hotels many places, they just may not have all of the bells and whistles. But if you plan to spend most of your days out and sightseeing anyway, a fancy hotel room may not be top priority. When we went to Nashville we managed to find a hotel just outside of the city for $65 a night, and it was great! Just make sure you check with a website like TripAdvisor for their ratings and reviews.
Limit the alcohol
I know, it’s not what anyone wants to hear while they’re on vacation. But drinking out at bars or restaurants can really start to add up. If you’re on a budget consider limiting your alcohol intake. Another good option is to get a couple of bottles of wine or your drink of choice to enjoy back at your hotel room every night.
Travel with friends
Traveling with friends is not only great fun, it’s also a great way to save some money. Bringing other people along means that you can share a hotel room and split the cost of that. If you’re driving instead of flying you also have people to share the price of gas. And if you’ve got a really big group, you may even be able to score some group discounts!