Everybody loves to travel and go on vacation. But in today's economy, families are cutting back on their vacations, mainly by reducing the number of days the family can go away. A few frugal road trip tips can help put those extra days in back in your vacation.
- Clip Coupons - When you are on a roadtrip there are a few essentials that you can't do without, especially if you are traveling with kids. Luckily most of these things can be purchased from places that will need to compete for you dollar. This means sales and coupons. Before you go away, research hotel deals for free nights or kids staying free. Also research restaurants in the area to see which might have a special discount night, free meals for kids or senior citizens, or coupons for take out meals.
- Stay Grounded - While flying can get you anywhere in the country in less than a day, that is assuming your flight leaves on time, there are no stopovers, the weather cooperates, and they don't lose your luggage. A short flight can easily turn into a two day nightmare. Meanwhile most locales can be reached by ground transportation in as little as 3 to 15 hours. With judicious planning you can reach your destination without adding any extra time to you vacation and possibly saving a bunch on airfare. Even with discount airlines, since you're paying per person, either driving your own car or getting a good deal on a rental can save you both money and time. And the scenery is an added bonus for both your family and your digital camera.
- Brown Bag It - Suite hotels generally will give you access to small kitchenette area to prepare meals. You could easily offset the cost of a couple of rooms in a suite hotel by saving money on eating out at restaurant and fast food joints. Doing a Google search for the local supermarket and a quick trip to the local Walmart to pick up disposable dishes and flatware can really pay off big, especially on longer trips of a week or more.
- Bring Quarters - While everyone loves buying new clothes both before and during a trip, it can add a lot of cost to your travel budget. Doing a quick local search for a neighborhood laundromat can payoff in an extra day or two on your vacation. While you might still buy an outfit or two, you can pack outfits that you already have and pack less as well. A couple of trips to the local laundry will save you money.
- Let the Trip be the Trip - While vacation destinations like resorts and amusement parks can be exciting, they normally also are very expensive. So that along with cost of getting there, the cost of being there can trim days from you vacation. If you are willing to travel by ground, either by car or train, the scenery alone can be worth the trip. It's also totally free. Along with the free scenery, many of the highways and byways of the country are home to thousands of great local tourist attractions and cheap vacation destinations.
Any one of these tips can help you save enough for an extra night on the town or two. By combining several of these tips a family of 5 can almost double the value and time you have to spend on vacation.
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