With spring break travel peaking and the busy summer vacation season right around the corner, now is the time to learn how to stretch your travel dollar. The following tips don’t require a ton of effort to execute. What’s more, once you realize how easy it is to save on travel-related expenses, you may be inspired to find a few more frugal ways to keep from going into debt during your family getaway.
Timing is key: Do a little research before you hit the road on a family vacation. Airfare and hotel rates can jump sky high when traveling during peak travel times. To avoid paying an arm and a leg for your trip, consider visiting popular vacation destinations during the off-season. Also, check-out the websites of the places you are interested in visiting prior to booking your trip. Some attractions offer special savings when debuting new exhibits. For example, if you wait until June to visit SeaWorld San Diego you can be the first to experience the new “Madagascar Live: Operation Vacation” live show. The 20-minute musical features the characters from the “Madagascar” movie franchise, including Alex the Lion, Gloria the Hippo, and the Penguins as they embark on a fun-filled vacation adventure. The show features rock/pop music performed by a live band and includes both classic and original songs. The characters will also conduct meet and greets and take photos with park guests at no extra charge.
Visit tourism boards: Many popular vacation destinations have tourism boards that offer coupons for local attractions, restaurants and shops. Locate a visitors’ center when you get to your destination or visit one online to get a host of tips on how to save while in the area. For example, Myrtle Beach’s Tourism Board suggests that larger groups rent a home in the community rather than stay at a hotel in order to save on travel costs. Not only is it more economical to split the cost of a house rather than pay for individual hotel rooms, but also most rental homes come equipped with large, functional kitchens that allow you to dine-in instead of paying to eat out at pricey restaurants during the course of your vacation.