My money saving Travel tips!
If you are anything like me this pandemic has got you dreaming about getting out of town when the world opens back up again! The only problem is while I want to travel I also want to make sure I'm getting the best deal possible especially these days. I have put together a list pf my top way's I travel on a budget!
Do Not Travel on Holiday's .If you can help it never travel on a holiday weekend! Since most are traveling over the holiday's prices skyrocket. So unless there is a special reason to get out of town for a holiday opt to stay local in you'r home town.
If possible avoid travel on the weekends. I'm very lucky in that it's fairly easy for me to take a few days off during the week to get away. Hotel rates are generally drastically cheaper during the week in weekend towns. I took myself on an overnight stay to Atlantic City and stayed in a beautiful room overlooking the ocean. My room was around $85 for a monday night but the same room goes for over $300 on a saturday night!
Make sure you clear your browser history before you book that hotel or flight. Websites remember the searches that you have done and often time slightly start to increase the cost is encourage you to buy before the prices go any higher. So once you find the travel accommodations you want clear your browsing history and search one last time. This will usually save me between $5-$25.
It never hearts to ask for an upgrade! I have used this method several times. When I arrive at a hotel I but on my best friendly warm demeanor on and great the the staff warmly. once introductions have been made I politely ask if there is any chance they have any complimentary room upgrades available. I would say about 50% of the time just asking will at the very least get you on a better floor or with a better view. I have gotten upgraded for free quite a few times. Every time I visit vegas I slip the check in person a $20 and ask about the room upgrade and it has worked every time. The worst they can say is no.
Southwest Airlines rapid rewards! I'm not a huge fan of credit cards but I am a fan of earning free travel. Lucky for me Southwest has a program called rapid rewards. This program dose not require a credit card but still allows you to earn points through flight, dinning out, shopping online and hotel stay's It's a simple widget add on to your browser and any time you shop online it will pop up and tell you how many points per dollar you will earn from online shopping. Sephora for example generally earns me 3 -4 points per dollar spent online. If you sign up for dinning rewards all you have to do is link your card to the account and any time you dine out at a local spot you earn points without doing anything. Lastly if I'm booking a hotel I do it through Southwest to earn more points. I easily earn one flight a year through rapid rewards.
Cruise local. If you are thinking about a cruise consider leaving from you're local cruise terminal. Both Carnival and Royal Caribbean leave out of Baltimore. Not needing to fly south will easily save hundreds of dollars.
Ask the locals. When ever I'm staying in a new town I ask the local hotel staff (usually a bellhop or the front desk worker) where their favorite local restaurants are. They will always know a great place where can get a real feel for the local culture and it's usually off the tourist route so prices will be cheaper.
Avoid eating out every meal.Instead of going out for every meal I often times look for hotels with breakfast included. I will also run to the store once I get settled and buy some bottled water, snacks and lets be honest alcohol. This way the only meal I have to spend money on is dinner!
Plan ahead whenever possible. I find that the further out you can plan your travel the cheaper it is. I generally try and book hotels about 6 months out when I know I have to be in a certain place at a certain time. Same goes for airfare.
Be spontaneous. On the flip side of planning ahead you can often times get great deals on places at the last minute. Cruises for example will offer great deals on unsold rooms the week before departure. If you are looking to get an Airbnb and it's day's out don't be afraid to message the owner and ask if they can cut you any kind of deal. The place would have been empty so I find that often times they will work with you.
Vist that out of town friend or family member! Most of us know at least one person that lives out of town. Why not pay them a visit! You will get to see what life is like where they live. You get free accommodations. Although I always treat to nice dinner or fun activity while I'm in town. It may not always be the most glamorous place to visit but I find any travel with people I love is a great way to refresh my mind, body and soul. Don't forget to return the favor when these friends and family want to come visit you!
Happy Travels! Do you have any money saving travel tips?