Saving Money on 2012 Travel

Photo Credit: whyinsuranceblog.com

Photo Credit: whyinsuranceblog.com

Let’s face it, very few of us are where we would like to be financially. But don’t let that stop you from traveling this year! Here are 5 great ways to save big bucks on your next adventure!

1. Skip the hotel
For significant savings and more square footage for your dollar, swap the expensive hotel room for a privately owned apartment or house on your next vacation. More second-home owners are turning to vacation-rental companies like vrbo.com, which lists more than 100,000 houses worldwide.

House-swapping has also become very popular! Sites such as homeexchange.com, intervac.com, and ihen.com charge annual membership fees in exchange for access to their extensive databases. But remember, you have to live in a desirable location as well.

Photo Credit: Men's Health

Photo Credit: Men's Health

2. Go all-inclusive
Avoid the shocking bill at the end of the trip by booking with an all-inclusive resort, where meals, drinks, and activities are included in the rate. No longer will you pay ridiculous amounts for renting snorkel gear or ordering a cocktail by the pool. Finally, a way to truly let go and enjoy yourself!

3. Chase the exchange rate
Travelers looking to make the most of their money should keep an eye on global exchange rates. Some places to get great bang for your buck are Iceland, Hungary, South Africa, Brazil, and Mexico. Also, don’t forget how far the dollar goes in India and Southeast Asia! Supporting tourism in these countries is a great way to boost their local economies while stretching your vacation time!

4. Stop hoarding your miles
This is the year to use all those frequent-flier miles you’ve been accumulating. CNN notes, “Most airlines start selling flights 330 days out, so using your miles as far in advance as possible increases the likelihood of getting an award seat. And if a flight isn’t full approximately two weeks before departure, the carrier will turn to frequent-flier customers to help fill the plane.”

5. Say yes to free
From spending the day at the beach or hiking a trail, to checking the local newspaper for free concerts and special events, there are tons of ways to enjoy your vacation without breaking the bank. Instead of taking professional tours, check out timeshares that will give you the tour for free.  It’s a great way to see the city and save at the same time. Also, contact your destination’s tourist information bureaus in advance for free coupon books full of potential adventures.  Your savings will be huge and you can find out about the “must see” local attractions.

For more money-saving travel tips, contact our travel specialists!

Sonja Nash, Cruise & Travel Masters
800-264-0557
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