Tips for Making Your Family Vacation More Affordable
Traveling out of town with kids in tow? Stretch your budget further with these cash saving tips from LuckyChic.com.
With gas prices spiking and airlines beefing booking and travel fees, getting away from home and taking an affordable family vacation seems difficult – if not impossible.
But with some planning and researching, you can prepare to save some money while traveling on a budget so that you don't have to forgo that vacation. Joel Fan, president and founder of LuckyChic.com – an online spot where you can score luxury experiences for less – rounds up some advice.
So go ahead. Arm yourself with these tips. And get ready to don those Mickey Mouse ears!
Use apps to your advantage
There are many apps that can save you money. Whether it be GasBuddy to help you find the cheapest gas near you – or ATMHunter, which allows you to avoid fees when withdrawing money. ScoutMob is also a great app that offers 50 percent-off deals to restaurants and salons. They're increasing their offerings nation-wide, with deals currently in 20 tourist-destination cities, from Atlanta and NYC to San Francisco and Portland.
Brown bag it
Make an effort to create your own lunches or breakfasts when traveling. It's cheaper to stock up on fruit, snacks and cold cuts than eating every meal at a restaurant.
Dine out wisely
Many eateries offer "kids eat free" deals on certain night. Find locations near you on KidsMealDeals – or use their free app.
Take advantage of deals
If you're a member of organizations that offer discounts, look into where you could be saving money. AAA offers its members a variety of savings, which range from discounts to attractions to local spots.
Take your time when buying souvenirs. Shopping around will allow you to find the most reasonably priced stuff. Remember, seashells found on the beach make sweet mementos – and may be more heartfelt than buying a keychain.
Explore public transit options
Do some research about public transportation where you're going. Taking the subway or a bus instead of renting a car or hailing a taxi will save you a lot of money.
Do your research
Instead of paying for pricey guided tours, research free walking tours where you'll be visiting. The experience will often be the same, but you'll be saving.
Pack smart, pack light
When flying, make sure to strategically pack your suitcases; you'll avoid over-packing. You can aim to only bring carry-on bags, skipping checked baggage fees. If you are checking bags, make sure they meet the weight limits (exceeding them can often lead to extra fees).
Take the road less travelled
Explore small, local restaurants instead of flocking to large chain or touristy restaurants. You'll avoid paying for novelty – and you're likely to have a more authentic travel experience.
Bring along emergency essentials
Remember to pack small samples of any medications you might need to take. You'll save money if you have your own on-hand instead of having to buy a whole new container in case of a headache or stomachache.
Heck – bring essentials!
There's nothing more irritating than shelling out money for something you just forgot to pack. Be sure to remember your toothbrush and small-but-easy-to-forget essentials.
Get maximum bang for your buck
Don't forget to take pictures! You'll have the photos to remember your vacation forever by remembering to capture the memories.
Keep safety in mind
Make sure you save money reasonably. It's not worth trying to risk your or your family's safety to save a bit of cash.