Summer is the perfect time to take a fun-filled vacation but traveling during the peak season won’t come cheap. According to CheapAir.com, July is the most expensive month to travel this summer. Whether you’re planning an island getaway or a big city adventure, there are ways to enjoy your vacation without ruining your budget.
Pick a destination within driving distance
With the average cost of round-trip domestic airfare standing at $363 per person, a family of four can easily spend more than $1,400 on airfare alone. Take advantage of cheap gas prices by visiting a destination within driving distance instead. Not only will you save on airfare, you won’t have to rent a car or pay for a cab.
Plan around a deal
You can save a lot of money by planning your vacation around a weekly special or a last-minute deal. Travel sites like Expedia and Travelocity offer daily deals worth about 40% off but you’ll need to have a flexible schedule. For the latest sale information, subscribe to your favorite airlines and travel sites mailing list.
Fly on a weekday
Even though driving to your destination may be cheaper, many people still prefer to fly. Most sales on airfare are restricted to weekday travel so you’ll get the best deal if you keep your dates flexible. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are known to be the cheapest days to fly, while Fridays and Sundays are the most expensive. If you don’t mind traveling late at night, red-eye flights are also cheaper.
Stay at an all-inclusive resort
If you can find a good deal on an all-inclusive resort, take it. For one low price, your room, food and drinks (including alcohol) will be covered. Most resorts even provide daily activities and nightly entertainment.
Book a cruise
Cruises are another great way to stretch your vacation budget because you can visit multiple destinations on one trip. Every day you’ll wake up somewhere new. They’re also easy to plan. Just pick the ship that matches your preferences, select your cabin and pack your suitcase. Similar to staying at an all-inclusive resort, the price covers your food, drinks, lodging and on-board entertainment.
Go where kids stay and eat for free
When booking a family getaway, choose a resort that has a kids stay and eat for free program. Certain family-friendly properties like the Holiday Inn, allow kids 19 and under to stay for free when they share a room with their parents. Kids 12 and under also eat for free at any of their on-site restaurants.
Choose a destination with free entertainment
Wherever you go, you don’t want to be bored. Choose a destination where you can entertain your family for free. Vibrant cities like New Orleans, New York and Chicago have concerts, museums and historical landmarks that can be enjoyed at no cost.
Reconsider getting a rental car
Don’t automatically assume you’ll need a rental car to get from point A to point B. Research your destination and decide if it’s really worth it. If you’re traveling to a big city like Las Vegas, it may be cheaper and easier to get around by walking or taking public transportation.