Cut Your Travel Costs Without Staying Home

Cut Your Travel Costs Without Staying Home

Savvy ways to lower your travel expenses

There are several ways to slash the sums you’re spending on flights, lodging, excursions, and meals…and still see the world. 

Book in Advance (or last minute). The former is a solid strategy if you’ve planned travel as much as a year out. But if you want just a few days away, lining up your travel dates with last-minute availability and just getting on a plane (or ship) can be a great way to save big.

Be Flexible. Does your beach vacation have to be in the middle of February? Do you have to hit theme parks in the middle of the summer rush? By planning your journeys at less busy times of the year, you save on everything.

Add onto a Business Trip.  Are you headed for California for a conference on the company dime? Great! Fly your spouse out just as it’s about to wrap and extend for a few days. You’ve cut the cost of airline tickets in half and you may even be able to lock into the hotel at the pre-negotiated bulk rate. 

Use Miles Like a Pro. Some savvy travelers put all their spending on a single card that earns them points that can be transferred to a variety of partners (airlines and hotels), and then they pay off that card every month. They watch like hawks to see when reward seats are released and pounce. And, when they can’t use the points to fly, they know there’s a good payoff in spending them on hotel rooms instead.

Stay Somewhere With a Kitchen. Airbnbs and VRBOs are often just as pricey as hotels these days. But, having a kitchen can bring significant savings, because you can hit the supermarket and stock up on breakfast and lunch that you can have in the room. Then you only have to eat out for dinner.

Jean Chatzky

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