Saving money on accommodation when you are travelling can be pretty easy, especially when you know a few tricks and tips.
- Book Early – If you are able to lock down the dates that you will be traveling, do it. There are a great many deals available if you book you hotel accommodation early.
- Book Online – There are plenty of websites that you can go to these days to find the best deals on your accommodation. Don’t just stick to the hotel’s actual site. Also, don’t stick to the one site that you have seen their commercial a thousand times either. These websites at times will almost compete with each other. So plug in the dates of your stay on several sites and see what comes up.
- Travel Agents – Some people like to only travel if they are using a travel agent. Make sure that your travel agent is in it for you, not just their commission check from the hotel they want to book you at. If your agent is truly working for you, they can find you some amazing deals.
- Book Offseason – Hotels around the world have busy seasons and slow seasons. If you are able to plan your trips around these times, you will be able to get some great deals.
- Flexibility – If you are able to be flexible with where you are going to stay the better. Sometimes if you book just outside of the major city that you are visiting, you can receive great deals and still stay in great places.
- Sharing – If you are part of a small or even a larger group, you can cut some of your costs by sharing rooms with like-minded people. This will cut your cost in half or more depending on how many people are staying in the room. This also helps if you are a solo traveller, as unfortunately rooms for one person often comes with a hefty penalty attached.
- Couch Surfing – This is fairly new way of traveling. There are sites you can go to that people have offered up their couch or extra bedroom for free. If you are carefree with no kids or baggage, this can be a fun way of traveling and not worrying about how you are going to afford places to stay. Most people offer up their couch or extra bedroom for a couple of nights and often provide a valuable insight into the local culture and what’s happening.
- Hostels – Hostels are not like they used to be years ago. Now they can be chic affairs, with boutique hostels on offer which are still very affordable. There are still a great many people that travel the world backpacking using hostels. You will have great prices and the opportunity to meet some amazing people.
- Ask for a Discount – Now this might seem obvious, but how many people actually call up a hotel where they are traveling to and actually ask for a discount? If you do not ask for the discount, guess what, you are not going to get one.
- Camping? – Some people don’t think of this when they go on vacation. But it can actually be quite fun. Taking the family on a cross country trip, you can find camp grounds all over. You get to meet others that are doing this and be able to stretch your vacation budget even further.
- Internet – Most hotels these days have internet access in the rooms, including Wi-Fi. Check to see if they offer these services for free. Most hotels offer it free in the lobby, but when you get to the room, it can become very expensive to check your email or post that picture of your vacation. My suggestion is if they charge, go find a local coffee shop, get a cup of coffee and surf the web there.
By Julie Bowman