Taking a family trip is so much fun and definitely a must for me. We enjoy our family trips so much and make fond memories. But, it can get expensive really fast. Here are my ten tips/secrets for getting great travel deals and traveling with your family for cheaper:
1. Plan ahead. As your travel dates get closer the prices will most likely go up. Plan in advance so you can watch for the best airline ticket prices and hotels room rates.
2. I really like the website Kakak.com. It helps me to find the best prices for hotels, flights, rental cars, etc…all in one place. You don’t actually book on this website is it more of a search engine. It will compare other money saving sites like expedia, travelocity, hotels.com so you can easily find the best price.
3. Try to travel when it isn’t peak season. The prices drop significantly when peak season is over. I have found the hotels prices to be half or less of the rates during peak season.
4. Find coupons. Take the time to find coupons for the area you are traveling to. It will save you a lot of money and really help to cut the costs of your trip.
5. Check with your local or an online travel agency. A lot of times they can get you great discounts for your trip. I actually just planned a trip for my family and our local travel agency saved us a couple hundred dollars on our trip.
6. Find a hotel that includes breakfast. This will save a ton while you are on your trip. Just cutting down the cost of breakfast for your whole family will add extra money to your trip budget.
7. Go to the grocery store once you arrive. I always head to the store and pick up snack foods, water, drinks, etc… the cost of these items in a hotel or vending machine are much higher. This will save you from paying those inflated prices. Also, if your hotel doesn’t have breakfast included you can pick up breakfast items, like cereal, milk, bagels, etc…
8. Pack smart. Take the time to make a list of everything you need. Everything! Then double check that you have it all. It is going to eat into your tip money if you have to buy extra essentials like toothbrushes and toothpaste.
9. Buy souvenirs for your kids ahead of time. I always let my kids buy one or two small souvenirs while we are on vacation, but I also buy a couple things ahead of time to save a ton of money. For example, when we go to Disneyland I buy Disney themed t-shirts ahead of time for them, as well as glowing toys for the night time when they see them for sale. The park sells them for $15 I can grab them at Walmart for $2 to 5.
10. Have a budget and stick to it. If you don’t plan how much you are allowed to spend on the trip you will most likely find yourself spending a lot more than you planned. I like to take some cash for our extra treat/souvenir spending money and then I know when it is gone, so I won’t spend more than I planned.
I hope these help with your next family trip. I would love to hear what secrets and tips you have for traveling at more affordable prices with your family!
*I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Alamo blogging program, for a gift card worth $25. For more information on how you can participate, click here.