Summer Vacations – How to Save $$$ on Travel

As entrepreneurs it’s vital for you to take time off from your business. Working all day, all week is not sustainable. Here’s how Allan took an 18 day workcation to Costa Rica. Read on to learn ways to save money on your next vacation.

The sun is shining, the water’s warm, and more than likely, there’s a summer vacation on your agenda. Getting away from it all is a summer tradition, but too many people fail to understand that when they get back, there are a great many expenses on the horizon – back-to-school costs and looming holiday gifts to name a few. Although it may seem a bit late in the game to search for ways to save on summer travel, there’s always time to be thrifty. If you play your cards right, you can reduce your travel expenses by 40% or more. Here’s how to do it:

1. Take Advantage of One-Day Airline Sales

Several major airlines like Airtran offer one-day sales, but you’d never know it unless you sign up for email updates. The Atlanta-to-Tampa route, which I fly regularly, is a pretty common fare which means that flights rarely go on sale. However, by keeping up with Airtran’s email notifications, I’ve occasionally booked a round-trip flight for around $180, compared to the typical cost of $300. Delta had a one-day sale a while back as well featuring $81 one-way flights. The deals are there, you just have to dig to find them.

2. Use Priceline

Priceline’s “name your own price” feature, in which you input what you’re willing to pay for a particular flight, can result in savings upward of 80%. You’re going to have to make a few sacrifices – you won’t know which airline you’re flying, the time of day it leaves, or how many layovers are involved – but if you’re looking to save money and your schedule is flexible, it’s a great resource to take advantage of.

Check out some Priceline hacks.

3. Book Early

Since we’re already at the height of summer, booking early may not apply, depending on when you plan to take your vacation. However, if you know you have a winter excursion on your agenda it never hurts to start looking now for flights and airline ticket deals. The prices for holiday fares start going up well before the months of November and December, so researching these prices now can certainly be to your advantage.

4. Use Deal of the Day Websites

Deal of the day websites can reduce your food and entertainment costs by more than 40% at your vacation destination. Simply input the zip code for the city you’re visiting to get a list of available discounts – potentially up to 50% or more. Just be sure to cross-check any deals you find with a general Internet search to verify that they are in fact deals.

During Allan’s recent 27 day roadtrip workcation to Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Chicago and Madison Wisconsin he stayed at AirBnb apartments. Allan’s family would by some groceries and eat at least one meal in, usually lunch or breakfast saving them $50 a day.

5. Book Your Hotel on Your Mobile Device

If you’ve yet to book your hotel, put that smartphone to good use. When hotels recognize that occupancy rates are low, many list last-minute deals on their mobile apps. Book a back-up hotel in advance and then search for cheaper lodging options as your travel date gets closer, using your mobile device to score a great deal. Just make sure your original reservation can be canceled.

6. Enlist the Help of a Travel Agent

While you might think that using a travel agent increases your costs, the opposite can in fact be true. Most travel agents know of unadvertised deals on lodging, flights, tourist attractions and more, and if you go with a reputable agent, you can save a good amount on your overall vacation bill. Check the American Society Travel Agency website or the Tripology website for a reputable agent.

Final Thoughts

Tourists and travelers often fail to budget for, or even look for ways to save, on souvenirs. Consider implementing a souvenir budget, especially if you have kids, and plan to limit your purchases to the end of your time away. This can help you get a broad perspective of what’s available so that by the end of the week you and your family are able to make the most cost-conscious decisions.

How do you plan on saving on summer travel this year?

Do you have an travel tips?

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