One of my aspirations in life has always been to travel and see the world like every other stereotypical millennial; However, I am not willing to go into debt to travel! Being in a long distance relationship which requires me to travel almost once a month could be very expensive but it isn’t because I am financially conscious. Overall, it has actually helped me hone in on my budget vacation planning. Being financially conscious about traveling and family vacations have allowed me to avoid the pitfall that is debt. Just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t have fun! Here are some ways to keep fun up while keeping costs down when it comes to traveling.
To Take a Train, Fly or Drive? That Is The Question.
Obviously, this will depend on where you want to go but with modern day technology there are multiple ways to get to where you want to go. If you drive, you have control over what you bring and can help you avoid those pesky baggage fees at the airport. Driving also allows you to stop when you want, stretch or check out some cool sites along the way. It’s often cheaper overall compared to plane tickets; If you’d like to compare the cost of driving versus flying check out this Fly or Drive Calculator to calculate your customized travel costs.
If you are traveling in the US, Amtrak trains have a wide variety of train routes throughout America which are often cheaper than flying to your destination. While it may take you longer to reach your destination by train than by plane, you’ll get to see many different stops along the way. In my experience on the Palmetto line (Miami to NY), there was wifi, electrical sockets, a dining car and massive amounts of leg room which is more than most airlines can offer at economy pricing. You can even bring food onto trains and avoid costly airport restaurants and snacks!
Traditional Hotel or Airbnb?
Hotels can be expensive and overpriced; Airbnb offers multiple options compared to the traditional hotel. Airbnb’s can sometimes be cheaper than hotels while offering more amenities like kitchens, pools, wifi etc. Plus, you get to meet many different hosts and make connections around the world. Personally, I have found using Airbnb simple and easy allowing us to save while on vacation not only in rental costs but also by allowing us to cook at the Airbnb.
According to a Consumer Expenditure Report, on an average four-night stay food costs a total of $35 a day when eating out; Meanwhile, it only costs $6 per day per person if food prepared by the average vacationer. While it is nice to go out to eat occasionally, it’s easy to see how the expenses could add up quickly if this was a constant pattern. Slow cookers are a really easy and portable tool to make meals on the go with your wallet in mind!
Finding activities is hard enough to do on vacation adding the stress of money to selecting an activity only makes it planning harder. Sites like Groupon often offer deals for entertainment activities at a reduced price; If you have a group of people, Groupon often has deals for groups with big savings. Whether you’re going to mini-golf or bowling, Groupon often has family-friendly deals for everyone.
Just because you’re on a budget does not mean you have to sacrifice on the fun! It is possible to vacation without breaking the bank if you’re conscious about decisions you’re making while traveling. By making small changes, the cost savings can easily add up allowing for a fun vacation without draining your wallet.