There are 2 things I love in life – spending money and saving money.
If only I could do both simultaneously…except I can! (and I do)
Seriously, my husband loves me for it!
Ok, maybe love is a strong word, but who doesn’t love someone who saves a boatload of money?!?
One thing I always save money on, besides everything, is travel. It’s something that just thrills me to find a great deal.
I just love an amazing luxurious vacation without the price tag.
Is it a coincidence that my maiden name is ‘Price’??
I say it’s meant to be.
Think about this:
more planning/prep equals less $$ spent
less planning/prep equals more $$ spent.
Without much further ado, here are my top 10 ways to save on your next vacation.
Always be on the lookout
Frequently take a quick look through a few of your favourite vacation websites to see what’s out there, what’s on sale and what you’d like
Sometimes, people choose travel dates for many different reasons. If you can, be flexible with the dates you want to go. Last year when we went to Cancun, leaving 2 days earlier than originally planned saved us money.
Some of the best deals are last minute. I can’t even count how many times I get into convos with people on vacation that tell me the steal of a deal they got that was hundreds of dollars above the price I paid.
Almost all of my trips are booked last-minute – I’m talking the book on Tuesday, leave on Friday type. This can be hard, especially if you have kids/pets to make arrangements for, but we have made it work with our 2 kids and a dog. The key is preparation. I always have a process that I follow once I book a vacation (like lists of babysitters, meal prep, packing lists, etc.) and it seriously helps me in those moments that I wake up deciding to go on vacation.
It can be very easy to get caught up in going to the same places you swear by, but think about trying a new resort, cruise line, airline or destination. You may be pleasantly surprised.
However, this leads me to tip #6…
Check unbiased reviews & video footage
This isn’t really a money-saving tip, but it can be if you tend to waste your money on resorts that aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. Resorts, hotels, cruise ships, etc. all want you to pick them. They will post the best pictures and sometimes they even give incentives to people to write good reviews about them. Check out recent, real people reviews and footage.
This is actually something that made me think about blogging – none of the reviews I read/saw gave an accurate depiction of the beach/oceanfront. When we got to one destination, there was a 5 day rain streak and we noticed that they pumped all the rain water into the ocean directly in front of the resort. Let’s just say it looked and smelled like decaying flesh (it was actually decaying trees branches). We won’t be going back there.
Cruising can be a great way to see many different places without spending the money on traveling individually to each of those places. There are many cruise lines that offer discounts and incentives.
Travel off-season or during rainy season
I know it sounds unappealing to go to a warm, tropical destination and have it rain on your parade. Just hear me out…tropical rainy seasons aren’t like the rain we get here (Canada), they usually get spurts of rain, followed by bursts of sunshine. Within my short 15 years of cruises and resorts (most of them during rainy season), I’ve only had 1 vacation that it rained non-stop for 5 days – and the locals said it was not normal.
Fly the deals
There are many ways to save on flights. If you stick with the same airline, you can get miles to use toward flights. I’ve never personally done this yet because we’ve generally flown with Spirit or Sunwing, but I do have a new favourite airline – Southwest! You can definitely find cheaper base prices with Spirit, but I recently flew with Southwest and loved everything about it. I’m now at a place in life where I value my comfort more than saving $$. (Shh, don’t tell Brian!)
Think outside the box
This is actually better suited for a blog post on it’s own, but it’s worth mentioning in saving money. You know how people buy timeshares? You know how those same people don’t always get the week(s) they want so they don’t go? Guess what happens to those timeshare rooms/condos. They sell them to money-saving gurus like me! It’s called vacation resort certificates and you can buy them for super cheap. We went to Florida for 2 weeks and only paid $500 for a 2 story condo with 2 bedrooms, full kitchen, full laundry, that backed onto an outlet mall and was 15 minutes from Disney. We were able to use the money we saved to bring the kids to Disney, their water parks, Legoland, Arabian Knights & more!
So there you have it! My top 10 money-saving tips for vacation. Let me know in the comments below how you save money when you vacation.