So, I get called stingy a LOT, but I don’t currr, because I’m saving my money for vacations and babies and anything else I want in life.
Here are a few tips that have helped me save some serious dough when traveling!
1. DELETE YOUR COOKIES
When you decide to travel everyone knows websites like Hotwire, Orbitz, Priceline etc. have fantastic deals, but did you know that if you do not delete your cookies on your browser that your prices will go UP! I search using Google Chrome’s incognito feature, and so far it has helped me with this price jumping fiasco. Also, compare your flights with the airline that these discount websites have.
For example: I looked at Orbitz for a flight to SFO, it showed me a great deal on United Airlines. I went to United’s website and found that the flight was cheaper directly through the airline.
2. CHECK OUT GROUPON
Always check Groupon for hotel or package deals, I know it seems weird, because Groupon is usually for local deals, but I’ve found hotel deals that are super cheap! Be careful when looking at packages because the flights only leave through certain airports. You can also use Groupon to find great places to eat in the town you’re vacationing. This is helpful because knowing where to eat in a city you’ve never been to, can be confusing and frustrating!
3. JOIN A HOTEL CHAINS REWARDS PROGRAM
My husband (William) and I decided to do a “stay-cation” at the Gaylord Texan, TOTALLY AWESOME PLACE! I joined Marriott Rewards (completely free btw) and I looked at the ‘deals’ they have there. Their rooms were $100 less a night! Um.. yes please! Not only was it cheaper, but they had deals for a $50 resort credit included, breakfast included, or my favorite a romantic package. 😉 When we got to the Gaylord Texan, there was a huge sign for Marriott Rewards Members to go to a separate and faster line. YES, PLEASE! We also received free wifi for being members, and it was COMPLETELY FREE to join! The website will prompt you to see if you’re interested in getting a Marriott Credit Card, but it’s optional. I haven’t joined any other hotel company’s rewards, but I know the Hilton Rewards is very good as well. I now get my hotels through Marriott when we travel and I’ve earned quite a few points that we’re using on a vacation coming up!
4.B&B MIGHT BE YO’ THANG
Unless you’re trip is a family vacation, (which could be weird at a romantic B&B) Bed and Breakfasts may be the perfect spot for your vacation! B&B’s include breakfast, duh! That’s one less meal you have to pay for because it’s included in the hotel. The people who own the B&B live in the city, duh! So they can also help with hot spots, cheap places, and great dives that you should see, which can help you form an itinerary.
5. STAY EXTENDEDLY
The title is kind of weird on this one, but think about staying in an extended stay hotel, like; Extended Stay America, In Town Suites, Homewood Suites, etc. Hotels like this are guaranteed to have a microwave, stove, oven, fridge, and so on! This means that you can just buy some sandwich bread and meat, and save on lunches during your vacation! Everyone knows that making food at home is cheaper than eating out, so think about staying at a hotel that can accommodate eating cheaply.
6. RESEARCH HAPPY HOURS
I have recently quit drinking, so you don’t have to drink during happy hours, however, during happy hours discount food is sometimes available. When William and I went to Las Vegas (on a total whim) on the flight there I was downloading the Happy Hour Finder App. (I also downloaded the Vegas.com app, hold tight, another post about how to be cheap, but fabulous in Vegas coming soon!!) This app is AWESOME! It tells you what restaurants near you have happy hour, when and how good the discount is. I framed our itinerary around these happy hour food places and we saved a TON!
7. FRIENDS THAT TRAVEL TOGETHER STAY TOGETHER
When William and I were first together (and super broke), we rented a cabin with some friends, I mean A LOT OF FRIENDS! We had our own room and our own car, so we could go do our own thing, but the group would eat dinner together every night. It was so fun, like a giant slumber party! You could even rent a house in Hawaii for way cheaper than getting a hotel AND you have a kitchen which saves you even more money.
*All photos found through google or flickr, all labeled for reuse.