Most people want to take vacations, but sometimes the costs can add up. The good news is that there are ways to reduce these costs. Five helpful tricks outlined in this article provide good ideas on how to make your dream vacation more affordable.
#1: Use Comparison Websites
There is a hotel that you really want to stay in, but on the website you usually use, it’s so expensive! The solution to this problem comes from comparison websites. Go to a website such as Momondo and plug in the name of your hotel, and voila! See the same hotel priced on multiple websites. This can be a great way to save a bit of money and stay where you wanted.
#2: Take Advantage of Travel Loyalty Programmes
Every time you fly or stay in a chain hotel, there is an opportunity to earn loyalty points. These points can also be earned through regular credit card spend and even from shopping at the supermarket. When all these sources are combined together, loyalty points can be an easy way to get free flights and hotel rooms. Loyalty points should always be considered when traveling, especially to very touristy where there are lots of chain hotels, and on flights in business class (where the best values are). Some of the more well-known hotel loyalty programs are Marriot Bonvoy, World of Hyatt and Hilton Honors. Virtually all airlines should have a loyalty program.
#3: Buy Tourist Passes
Many cities allow you to buy a pass which will get you into admission to multiple tourist sites for a fixed price. For example, if visiting New York, you can buy a one-day New York Pass for $134. This pass gets you into many attractions, such as the Empire State Building, the Museum of Modern Art, Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, The Met and the Statue of Liberty. Combined, all these attractions would cost $144, meaning that if you could fit them all into a day you would save some money. This would make a pretty hectic day though, so buyer beware. Make sure you plan effectively before buying one of these passes, otherwise they could cost more than they are worth.
#4: Travel in the off-season
Do you really want to travel in the high season? There will be crowds of people and accommodation prices will be off-the-charts? Of course maybe you will miss those Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto, but on the other hand, you can save a lot of money and miss the crowds. The peak season in many tourist destinations is where there is a festival, natural phenomena, the best weather or holidays. However, slightly off-season often has great weather too – and is significantly cheaper. Yes, you may miss the festival, but you will also miss the crowds and not experience your wallet empty quickly!
#5: Go to places off-the-beaten-path
Touristy places are very famous (think places like Venice, Barcelona, and Paris), but because of their fame, they are often very expensive for tourists. Hotels are expensive and the restaurants are also expensive. There are also the crowds of tourists to compete with. While places that are less famous, may not have the Eiffel Tower or Venice’s canals, they can still be rewarding in their own way. Instead of going to Dubrovnik, why not try Kotor in Montenegro? Instead of a big Western European city like Paris or Barcelona, consider Eastern European cities like St. Petersburg or Bucharest. They can be just a rewarding but without the crowds and the high costs.