A Harris Poll released this week found that one-third of all would-be travelers plan to reduce the amount of money they spend on vacationing this summer, thanks to the still creaky economy. The top places future travelers told surveyors they hoped to economize: lodging, activities and food.
We here at Babble hear you. So we’ve put together a list of five things you can do to cut your expenses while still having fun:
1. Airfares have increased between 10 and 20 percent since this time last year. But you can still save if you follow the lead of insiders when booking airline tickets. According to Stacey Bradford at CBS Moneywatch, the best day to buy tickets is Tuesday afternoon, with Wednesday the least expensive day actually fly.
2. Check into off-season deals. Summer is the least expensive time of the year to travel to the Caribbean. Sure, you are risking a hurricane, but you can enjoy world famed beaches and resorts for a fraction of the price you would pay during the peak winter weeks.
3. Be creative when it comes to lodging. I’ve enjoyed fantastic homes on Cape Cod that I’ve found on VRBO.com, renting entire houses for my family for less than it would cost for all of us to stay in one room at a hotel. If you live in a vacation destination like New York City or San Francisco, consider a home swap. Staying in a private residence also allows you to cook your own meals, another huge savings for thrifty travelers.
4. Bring your own kiddy supplies. Why spend money renting a car seat when leasing a car, or paying to use a public stroller at theme park or other tourist attraction? We can’t think of a reason you would want to pay for using things you already own either.
5. Look into free breakfasts. Many hotels offer no-cost access to buffet-style morning meals for all guests. My older son asks that I conclude this list by recommending the made-to-order omelets at Embassy Suites‘ morning buffet which, he says, were quite yummy.
Photo: Ed Yourdon