I would rather own a little and see the world than own the world and see a little of it.Anonymous
Let’s spend all of our money! Said no one…ever, especially while they were planning a vacation. I wholeheartedly believe you should be able to live up your vacations to the fullest without being rich and without feeling like you have to sell an organ on the black market to make it happen. I’ll do a post about budgeting for a trip in the future, but I wanted to share a few of my favorite tips for saving money before and during your vacation.
Travel with Friends
Most hotels and airbnbs charge a set amount per night. The more people you bring (please for the love abide by the host’s rules on how many people are allowed each night) the cheaper your overall cost per person becomes. When I went to Puerto Rico before the pandemic we saved over $50 a night because we traveled with another couple who shared the cost.
Dining out also comes with its perks when traveling with friends. You can order an appetizer to share and split the cost several ways or choose dishes to share. This same concept can be applied to ride sharing as well! Before you arrive, make sure everyone is on the same page and ready to split costs so you don’t get yourself into awkward experiences. No one wants awkward on a vacation. Everyone wants to save some money.
Rewards Credit Cards
If you’re in a financially stable place and not stressed by having a credit card, rewards cards are amazing. My favorite is the BarclayCard Arrival Card, but there are so many available that you can pick whichever would be best for you. My card gives me points to spend on travel-related items and gives me 5% of my points back when I spend them.
Check for international fees, membership fees, where you can use your points, when you can use your points, and if they expire. Each card is different, but I truly believe there is one for everyone.
Cash Back Apps
This one takes time, but it does give you a chance to earn a little bit of spending money. I use a few cash back apps like QuickThoughts, Mistplay, Ibotta, and Facebook’s Study. Using apps takes minimal effort and while the payout is very small (think $10-20 a month) it can add up.
These won’t pay for a flight, but you can use it as a way to save up for an excursion or treat yourself to a fancier meal or souvenir.
Wine… Wait, Really!?
If you love wine tastings, you’re going to love this. Most wineries, especially in the USA, will comp your wine tasting fee if you end up buying a bottle of wine. Now, this doesn’t save you a ton of money, but it does give you discounts and I love a creative way to save.
If you know you’re going to participate in a wine tasting, be picky about which winery you choose, so you’ll be more likely to enjoy the wine enough to buy a bottle. Then, you can enjoy that sweet, sweet discount.
While Groupon isn’t as popular anymore, it’s still a great way to save. I’ve never used their discount vacations, but a few friends have a loved the experience. My favorite part of the site is the discounted excursions and experiences local businesses put up.
If you can schedule the excursion to coincide with your vacation, using Groupon to save on an experience will absolutely be a good decision. Be sure to check the fine print just in case you need to arrange your travel plans around them.
Search for Free Experiences
Some of my favorite travel memories are from adventures we had that were free. Take a self-guided walking tour, go hiking, lounge on the beach, you name it. No matter where you travel, there will be something you can experience for free. It just takes a few minutes of research to find and will potentially save you lots of money.
When I travel, I like to plan my day with something free and something we pay for or alternate days where we only pay for meals and another day where we explore with a paid excursion. That way I don’t feel like my bank account will run away screaming and I can relax instead of thinking about how much money I’m spending each day.
What Tips Do You Have?
You know I love it when you guys have suggestions. Plus we can all benefit from more money-saving tips.