Tips for Cheap Traveling

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Traveling can get expensive. I like to find things here and there to help make it cheaper for my family. Here are some of my tips:

1. Use Ebates:  I like to use Ebates when I am purchasing airline tickets online, hotel rooms and/or rental cars. Use Ebates to shop online to your favorite retailers and earn cash back. Before booking any of my travel I first go to Ebates, look for my desired airline/hotel/car rental, click to go to the site, and let Ebates track my purchases. Ebates will then provide a percentage of money back.  To sign-up to use Ebates, click here.

2. Stick with a Brand: When I travel I like to stick to 1-2 hotel brands, 1-2 airline brands and one car rental program. Next I sign up for the brands reward program. If you stick to fewer brands, you're more likely to rack up reward points.

3. Plan your Meals and Snacks: When we're on vacation, if we stay at a hotel we like to stay at one with a free breakfast. I've also learned that packing your lunch on vacation is easy and very cost effective. Most lunch meats, cheeses, fruits and veggies can be stored in a hotel fridge. Packing your lunch is also cheaper than buying a meal at a restaurant. I also like to pack snacks when possible too...easy snacks for on the go like pre-sliced veggies, fruits and crackers. Dinner could also be sandwiches or barbecuing hot dogs at a park.

4. Plan Activities: I like to plan a couple of fun activities. Most areas have free, fun activities for kids and adults like small museums, parks, beaches, fish hatcheries, etc. Fun activities don't need to be expensive. You can also find lower cost activities to do on vacation on Groupon (Ebates offers 6% back on purchases from Groupon). I also like to research deals on activities beforehand to see if there are any coupons available online. For example, you can save an additional $5 off admission to the Kennedy Space Center online, if you sign up for the Passport Program and get 10% off of retail purchases.

5. Don't Check Luggage: If we're flying, we put all of our clothing in a carry-on. If we need clean clothes, we wash them at a hotel or relative's house. The cost of doing laundry is often cheaper than checking luggage.

6. Bring a Water Bottle: Bring a water bottle that can easily be refilled at any activities that you're doing. If you have a water bottle with you then you don't have to worry about purchasing expensive drinks at an airport or tourist location.

7. Plan a Travel Budget: If you plan out your spending limits then you won't have to worry about overspending.

8. Don't Travel During the Peak of the Season: Try not to go to a vacation spot during the peak of the season. The cost of hotel rooms, food, souvenirs and some activities goes up during a peak season, try to plan a vacation during the off season or near the very beginning or end of tourist season for an area.

What tips do you have?

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