photo: Karl Friedhoff via Flickr
Your big summer trip might be something you look forward to all year, but being a traveling brood can be expensive. So whether you’re heading out on the highway or taking to the skies, keep the costs down with one of these easy travel hacks:
Location, Location, Location!
If you’re headed to a major city, consider booking a hotel in the nearby suburbs, where hotels may cost 20 to 40 percent less, according to Matthew Stone, a travel industry professor at California State University, Chico.
Stay on a Sunday
Almost all hotels have their lowest occupancy rate on Sundays, so if you check in on Friday, your rate may go down if you can stay three nights.
Watch out for Resort Fees
Be wary of resort fees, which can add up to $50 additional a night. These charges aren’t always listed on the first page of advertised rates, so keep an eye out.
Visit National Parks on Weekdays or After Labor Day
National parks are getting more popular. According to the National Park Service, about one million more visitors went to Yosemite in 2016, for instance, than in 2015. Consider visiting less visited parks such as Lassen Volcanic and Redwoods.
Open a Travel Credit Card
You know you’re going to spend money on your trip, why not do it with a credit card that will give you extra points? Many credit cards (especially airline cards) offer extra points and incentives if you spend a certain amount of money within the first few months of opening an account. Some even offer double points for travel-related expenses, so take advantage of this perk and charge away.
Try Flying in August
Airfares tends to rise in the summer, but some airlines offer sales, especially for late August travel. Be sure to follow airfare monitoring sites such as Airfare Watchdog or Scott’s Cheap Flights to keep up on deals.
Use Apps to Save Money
Budget travel apps can save you money on everything from airfare to car rentals. Check out this list of money-saving travel apps from Travel & Leisure magazine.
Do you have any money-saving travel tips? Share them with us in the comments below.