Planning a vacation for a family with kids can get expensive quite quickly. Starting with airfare, lodging, and car rentals alone can bring the price tag way up. A budget doesn’t have to stop you and your family from enjoying some time away from home, however. Lots of families have figured out the best tips and tricks for traveling on a budget, and saving money starts in the planning stage.
Whether you use a frequent flyer card or simply join loyalty programs, it pays to sign up and accumulate points that you can use toward travel. When you’re part of loyalty programs, businesses like Priceline offer coupons and deals that you wouldn’t know about otherwise. Plus, getting a free flight because you’ve got lots of miles is nothing short of awesome.
Check Out Low Season
Shoulder season and low season are good times to travel to avoid the biggest expenses. The shoulder season comprises the month or two on either side of peak season. Business isn’t as good, and businesses offer deals to entice travelers to come, especially through incentives like Expedia coupons. Low season works, too, as long as it’s a place where there’ll still be stuff to do. (Disney World, for example, is around all the time, but the snow in the best skiing locations may not be.)
Research Free Attractions
Once you know where you’re going, find out if the attractions you want to see offer any free or discounted days. Some museums offer a free day once a week or once a month. Schedule your sightseeing around these free and discount opportunities before you leave. That way, you’ll already have a schedule, you’ll already know the free days, and you’ll be able to enjoy yourself while on vacation.
Don’t know where you want to go? Perfect. Vacation packages from Expedia are a great way to get bundle travel options that save you lots of money. Finding a package to a specific destination is unlikely, so browse through what’s available until you find something that looks good. Lots of excellent destinations crop up in vacation packages, so you’ll be going somewhere great.
Book Hotels With Free Breakfast
Image via Flickr by with wind
It seems like such a simple amenity, but the savings thanks to free breakfast add up quickly. If you eat out for breakfast every morning for $25, and you stay in your destination for five days, that’s $125 on breakfast alone. Many budget hotels you can book with Priceline deals offer free breakfast, while the more expensive brands do not. You get double savings this way, on room rates and food expenditures.
Saving money while planning your trip frees up more of your budget for the vacation itself. Treat yourselves to a nice dinner while you’re away. Take a day trip to an exciting location near your vacation spot. Go to more famous sights while you’re out of town. Or, put away the money you saved until you need it to plan your next trip!