Some of my Best Budget Travel Tips
Disclosure – This post about the Best Budget Travel Tips contains affiliate links that earn a commission when clicked for That Traveling Chick, at no additional cost to you.
It is really no big secret that travel can be expensive. Yes, there are certain kinds of travel that don’t cost as much as others, like tent camping, sleeping under the stars, or sticking close to your home. But the travel most enjoy, is not cheap.
When the planning starts and a budget is set, sometimes it can be frustrating trying to stay in that budget and fit in all one wants to do when on vacation. A vacation budget is key, but not always to abide by.
I might not be a pro at travel, but I do love me some travel and thought, I will share with you all my best budget travel tips and maybe they will help you like they help me.
Best Budget Travel Planning Tips
When planning for travel it’s best to sit down with all that are going on the trip and discuss the important things, like where you want to go, what kind of lodging you want, what activities you look forward to doing and what kind of dining you want to do.
Get feedback from all going on the trip, and start from there. This helps to get an idea of what the best direction to go is. There are generally compromises that will need to be made, of course depending on how many are in the travel party.
Figuring out what kind of lodging is best for your vacation can be simple. Are you hotel people, or do you like to have a few more luxuries and do a VRBO, or maybe you like to be around people and an Airbnb or Hostel is for you.
Booking ahead of time helps you find a better deal and get the type of lodging you really want. Waiting till last minute might make for less options and you having to settle for something you didn’t really want.
When booking, check out all your online sources and price match, then you can also call the hotel or place you wish to stay and see if they have anything better than what you have found online. Many times they will but if not they might work with you anyhow.
Like to book for cheap, and earn points that you can use for future hotel stays? Check out Hotels.com for great rates and perks.
Needing to get to where you are going, and choosing to fly. Good choice, but make sure you check flights way in advance for the best rates. Booking last minute can really hurt the pocketbook!
Check out Hopper or Airfare Watchdog. Expedia also has great rates and checks all the other services as well, and also you can book your airfare and hotel and car all in one place if need be.
My favorite for those who like a last minute getaway, is Dollar Flight Club. Crazy last minute deals for those who just need to get away, now, and don’t care where they go!
Is your vacation a short getaway? If so, save on extra costs by only having a carry on and not having to pay for checked bags. If you shop while at your destination, and it’s items you can ship home, do so.
Best Budget Travel Tips for Road Tripping
My husband and I are all about the road trip. Most years when we travel, it’s a road trip. We have driven from Minnesota to Florida, and to Texas and to Las Vegas, and many other places. The best budget travel tips for road tripping are simple.
Saving money by road tripping means packing food in the car so you don’t spend on eating, bringing lots of beverages, only stopping at a gas station for gas and don’t go in unless you need to go potty!
Stopping at wayside rests to have a picnic, stretch your legs, and go potty. Downloading apps to check out where gas stations are with the best gas prices can be helpful as well.
Looking to take a cruise? Best time to book a cruise is January to March. This is when you will see great deals from many of the cruise lines. If you can’t book by then, do it by the end of April as it’s a slow month for bookings so you might see extra perks offered.
Not sure what cruise line you would like to cruise on. Sign up for all the emails at each cruise line and then watch the deals pour in! Literally, you get emails every day, and if you read them all chances are you can get a crazy deal!
Maybe heading out and getting close to nature is your thing, but even that can cost a lot depending on how you choose to do so. Some RV parks can break the bank, but not Harvest Hosts.
Harvest Hosts is such a neat concept and one that more people should try. Stay at any of the host spots for free, and just show your appreciation by purchasing something they sell. Can be a simple $20 item even.
When we take of in January for our 4 month vacation in our new RV, Harvest Hosts will be one of our main ways to save money. That and boondocking. Check out my latest post about the Best RV for Retirement.
Use Your Points
Are you a rewards card holder? If not, you are missing out on some amazing perks! We use a few credit cards that earn us rewards for hotel stays and other perks light fly miles.
Marriott and IHG are the two that are our most used credit cards. Every single grocery store visit, gas fill, monthly bill, etc., is put on those cards and paid off each month and the points build so fast.
Many times the rewards cards have deals like if you use it certain places you earn extra points. Last month if I used one of my cards for gas I’d earn 5 points per dollar instead of 1 point. Bonus for me!
Many trips we have taken where we need hotels, we have stayed for free thanks to our rewards cards. One trip I added it up and we saved over $1000 on just hotel stays. That is HUGE, right?
I hope this helps with any upcoming travel you might be planning. There are many great tips I can give so reach out if you have questions. Also, check out my Shop for all your travel accessory needs.