Traveling is an important part of having fun and getting away from out troubles. The pandemic put a huge strain on these forms of entertainment, though, as social distancing and government shutdowns made it very difficult to enter foreign countries.
Even if you wanted to simply cross state borders, each region of the U.S. had different pandemic rules as far as going into restaurants and being in large groups. Now that all of these restrictions have been lifted, it’s easier to travel and get the full experience you want.
Inflation and people recovering from other financial problems has still made it hard to travel affordably. We’ll walk through all of the ways you can get away and not spend too much money. Travel car insurance can save you when you get into an accident on a road trip.
Getting a credit card that earns you points for frequently flying is another easy money-saving tip. We’ll cover these and several more.
Table of Contents
#1 – Stay Closer to Home
We all have that dream trip we want to take. Whether it’s to see Christ the Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro or to the lawns of Wimbledon to catch some tennis in England, it often takes too much money to vacation in these destinations.
Add in the pandemic restrictions that are still in place in some areas of the world and you have a lot of issues to solve before going halfway around the world. That doesn’t mean you have to skip going on a family vacation this summer, though. If you stay closer to home, you might find that you can save money and have some fun.
Ask friends and family about entertainment in your state that they may have experienced and you haven’t yet. Often there are awesome things to be done close by, and this avoids the hassle and expense of booking hotel arrangements and airfare.
The best times to travel within your state are during holidays and special events. Christmas festivals, New Year’s Eve and Fourth of July fireworks displays by the lake, and activities in nature like hiking and mountain climbing are great travel choices to stay close by.
This is dependent on the state you are in, though. Some areas of the U.S. simply don’t have much interest for you and your family. This is when you really do want to get away out of the state, and there’s one great way you might do that on a budget. If you do need to book accommodation, choose cheap options and cozycozy.com will help you compare offers from different accommodation providers in one place.
#2 – Go Visit Family
Chances are good that you have at least one family member or friend that lives out of state that you don’t see very often. If you travel to see them, it helps to guide your trip so you don’t spend as much money. For one, your host might let you stay with them instead of having to pay for a hotel.
Next up is the person you are visiting who might be very familiar with the state and can give you some tips on fun and exciting activities to do while you’re in town. They don’t even have to be huge tourist attractions. When you are in a new area, there are plenty of places to go that will be enjoyable because you’re looking at them from a fresh perspective.
If you don’t have family or friends in a different state, you won’t get the benefit of skipping hotel prices. This is where you need to get more creative about things like your method of transportation. This is a crucial decision to save you money.
#3 – Decide Whether to Drive or Fly
This is possibly the most important decision you can make to save money when you travel. The answer to this question of driving or flying depends on where you are traveling too. With the high prices of gas right now, taking a cross-country trip is often more expensive than an airplane.
If you are only going across a couple of states, you should consider driving though. Tickets for airplanes are not worth the price when you are making a short trip happen. If your family travels a lot by car, it’s important to get a vehicle with good gas mileage and a reliable track record of safety.
An alternative to both of these options could be to take a train. They are often cheaper to ride on than airplanes and can be effective at saving money compared to a car for a short trip, too.
#4 – Get Good Travel Insurance
Travel insurance is something that could save you a lot of money if you decide you have to cancel your trip last minute. Many people skip this purchase because they think it’s unnecessary, but the times we’re living in make it more important than ever.
If you or someone in your family gets COVID-19, you don’t want to be out hundreds of dollars due to skipping your trip and quarantining. Travel insurance protects you from things like canceled flights and canceled hotel arrangements.
If you are driving a car on your trip and are leaving your home state, you need travel auto insurance to protect your vehicle out of state. Talk to your auto insurance agent about how to get the most affordable rates on travel auto insurance. Having a clean driving record is a great place to start.
#5 – Get a Credit Card With Travel Points
There’s a lot of confusion over whether credit cards with travel points help you save money. It depends on what you are looking for. If you are someone who plans to start traveling by airplane a lot, travel points help you get cash back on your airline tickets after a certain number of miles are accumulated.
If you want to save money on things that you are going to buy while on your trip, these travel cards are not going to help as much. Only get them if you are planning on traveling many miles by airplane.
You can hopefully see that it’s possible to have some fun traveling while on a budget. Whether it’s staying close to home or visiting a family member you have missed for a while, there are plenty of excuses for seeing the world and not going broke while doing it. Plan ahead and you can have fun and enjoy your trip on a budget.
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the car insurance site, CarInsuranceComparison.com. He wants to help people enjoy traveling on a budget.