Summer is the peak season for many to go on vacation. It’s also the season in which most overindulge while traveling, making food choices they later regret. But vacationing doesn’t have to be draining on your health and your wallet if you follow a few simple tips:
• Buy healthful snacks before your trip. Packing light snacks like dried fruit, nuts, or protein bars not only help with in-between-meals hunger pangs, but also leave a bit of cushion in your vacation fund. Healthy snack foods tend to be pricier at convenience stores away from home. Save some cash by purchasing items at home.
• Book a hotel room with a kitchenette. A small kitchen in your hotel room or suite may be a little extra per night, but can pinch pennies in the long run. Upon arriving to your destination, ask the hotel concierge for the location of the nearest conveniently priced grocery store or open-air market and buy healthy food for the week.
• Splurge on activities rather than food. Have you always wanted to try a zip line? What about swimming with dolphins or going snorkeling? Maybe even an overnight excursion to a magical castle. Whatever it is, budget for fun things that keep you moving and will give you a pure vacation experience.
• Drink plenty of water. It’s easy to drink your calories while on vacation, especially during those Happy Hour two-for-one deals. Enjoy some cocktails, but make sure to stay properly hydrated while traveling—and that doesn’t mean drinking lots of tequila.
If you do plan on spending extra cash for a nice meal out, ask locals for recommendations. Don’t fall for the touristy traps that promise out-of-this-world cuisine but only deliver mediocre dishes at exorbitant prices.
By following these tips, you’ll eat well, keep a heavy wallet, and focus on the wonderful experiences of your travels rather than feel guilty about the money spent on junk food. Broaden your horizons by shopping locally and getting as much as you can out of your vacation destination.