Budgeting: Summer Travel
Tips for Saving on Travel
1. Be realistic about what you can afford. Hey, we all want an amazing, no-holds-barred vacation, but choosing a trip you can't afford will likely add more stress to your life. After all, what's the point of taking time to relax if you'll be paying for it for several months to come?
2. Create a trip budget. To help you, we've put together this free, web-based Travel Calculator, which can help you calculate the cost of gas, lodging, food and more. It’s also available as a free iPhone app, which you can download from iTunes.
3. Shop around. There are a wealth of sites that make it easy to compare fares from a variety of airlines, hotels and rental car companies, some of the most popular being Expedia.com and Travelocity.com. It's a savvy traveler's world—take advantage.
4. Protect yourself. When ordering tickets, make sure the sites you are using are legitimate. Once on your trip, safeguard your identity by keeping your passport, driver's license and credit cards in a safe place away from view. Also make sure to make photocopies in case of theft. If you do become a victim of identity theft, read our tips for restoring your identity here.
5. Expect the unexpected. Credit cards get lost. Flights get delayed. Storms arrive unexpectedly. Keep unknowns in mind when planning your trip, and set aside an extra 10 to 15% of your travel budget for emergencies or surprises.
6. Take advantage of technology. These days, few travelers leave home without their smartphones and iPads. Apps like Hotel Tonight and iFly Pro allow you to digitally book hotels, check in for flights and organize itineraries.
7. Consider alternative lodging. Companies like Airbnb, a service that allows you to rent unoccupied living space in other people’s homes, are increasingly popular – and in many cases, cheaper.
Top Travel Resources
Whatever type of travel you're considering, here are some ideas for getting the most out of your trip without breaking the bank.
Exhausted from your busy daily life? Spend some time taking care of your health. Take a look at where you can go to relax, unwind and get yourself in shape.
For most of us, summer vacation is a chance to breathe. There are some destinations that focus on boosting health and wellness. Here are a few relaxing vacation options:
- Spas. If you’re craving a deep tissue massage, facial or pedicure, check out a hotel or resort that offers spa services.
- Yoga retreats. Are you a yogi? If you dream of practicing yoga on the beach of the Mediterranean, there is a vacation package for that.
- Juice bars. Juice cleanses intended to detoxify the body are popular these days and some hotels are offering special packages centered around the cleanse.
- Fitness. For those who want to stay fit during vacation, hotels also provide fitness packages that can include workout apparel, classes and access to fitness centers.
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