May 11, 2010

Mommy's Top Ten Tips for an Affordable Vacation

I stepped outside this afternoon and as I began sweating I realized that summer will soon be upon us. I love summer. I love summer vacations. I do NOT love spending a lot of money. I thought I'd share with you a few of my favorite money saving tips. Hopefully they can help you as your begin to prepare for your own family's summertime adventures.

  1. "My mamma always said, 'You better shop around.'" Never, ever, ever purchase an item without checking to see if you can find it at a better price. Taking an additional five minutes to comparison shop could easily save you 10-15% on your purchase.
  2. Kick the hotel to the curb. If your travel plans involve an overnight stay, consider renting a house, condo, or an apartment instead of dishing out dollars for a hotel room. You can often get double the space for the same price (or less) than a standard hotel room. 
  3. Pick a place with a kitchen: Feeding a family of five at a restaurant can easily suck the money right out of your vacation fund. Plan on taking advantage of lunch specials and cook at home for the higher priced dinner meal. 
  4. Vacation with friends: Not only can you save a lot of money when you split gas and lodging, but you can also have a lot of fun. 
  5. Travel during the off season. My family and I love to travel to Breckenridge and Colorado Springs during the summer. There is no way we could afford to go during the height of ski season, but the off-season discounted rates are fantastic ways to save money.
  6. Bring your own snack foods. Sure $2 for a coke here and there doesn't sound like much, but it sure can add up. Stock up on your favorite snacks before you leave home. Chances are you can get them for much less than you would pay at a convenience store.
  7. Keep the souvenirs to a minimum: To be honest, you probably don't need another snow globe or fluffy topped pencil. Take pictures instead. Ten years from now you probably won't even remember where you put half of that stuff. 
  8. Ask for available discounts. You never know how much you can save by just asking if the attraction offers any special discounts or promotions. I was able to save 50% on a attraction by going on a particular day of the week.
  9. Use online price comparison services like Bing's Travel feature. They do the work of comparing prices for you. They also show the current price trends, which makes it helpful to decide whether or not to buy your ticket or wait a few more days.
  10. Have free fun! Check out the local state parks, hiking trails, and community events. Visit your location's city website to see if there are any free local events taking place during your visit. It can result in a lot of fun and very little money out of pocket. 
I hope you have a blast planning your summer vacations. Keep in mind that it's not the amount of money that you spend, but the quality of the time spent together. Enjoy and keep on saving! You can check out other mom's money saving ideas by checking out TwitterMom's discussion page here! You can also check out other great info at http://travel.twittermoms.com




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“I wrote this blog post while participating in the Toyota Sienna and TwitterMoms blogging program for a chance to get a $30 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

1 comment:

  1. Hi!! I have an award for you :O) Drop on over and pick it up here:
    http://thedailymomdiaries.blogspot.com/2010/05/spreading-love-around.html

    Take care,
    Tracy

    ReplyDelete

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