While traveling the place you rest your head during the night could eat up a big chunk of the budget. But don’t worry, there’s many options to locate secure, affordable and cozy accommodations.
For us, traveling with children isn’t always taking the cheapest option – we want to get the best value for money. We’re not so keen on roughing it as much as we used to be, but we still need to cut costs.
What you do and where you decide to stay will depend on a few things like:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your style of travel and level of comfort
- How big is your team
- Your interests
Just remember that getting a 15% discount on an accommodation you don’t need isn’t as effective as paying the full cost for a hotel you want. Our goal is to help you save money on lodging and to get an accommodation that you are happy with.
As a family, we’ve switched around our accommodations throughout the years. In the case of longer travel, we’re more comfortable in apartments because they have kitchens, separate bedrooms , and laundry facilities. Furthermore, we can share the cost of our trip with our friends or families. However, for shorter stays, we’re happy to stay in hotels or family-friendly hostels.
If you’re planning an extended trip across the globe, you should consider spending more time in places where you can save more and reduce your expectations in countries that are more expensive.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It’s not sensible to find a cheap hotel in a location that is miles from everything and you have to spend extra on transportation. Consider hotels located in central areas near public transportation, airports, and things to do, like beaches, restaurants, and parks.
Stay longer than one night
Many places offer better deals If you stay for two or more nights. Sometimes you can even stay four nights and only pay for three nights.
Stay at your hotel Sunday morning
Hotels are less busy on Sundays, which means you’re likely to score a good deal. Plus, if you stay on Sunday, you’ll avoid the crowds at check-in and checkout on Monday and Friday.
Weekdays are your friend
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are less expensive during the week than on weekends. So, stay away from all the tourists and spare some cash by traveling midweek.
Off-season is the best-season
It’s no surprise that hotels are cheaper during off-season. If you can travel in the shoulder season (between peak and off-peak), you can save money as well as avoid crowds, and enjoy decent weather.
Compare the prices of different booking websites
Do not just book on the first site you come across. Compare rates across multiple sites to make sure you’re getting the most value for money.
Make sure you sign up for loyalty programs
A lot of hotels and vacation rental companies have loyalty programs through which you can earn points and discounts on future stays.
Book early or last-minute
Sometimes, making reservations earlier can offer a better price or, in other instances waiting till the very last moment may score you a discounted rate.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate
If you are booking directly through a hotel or vacation rental, don’t feel afraid to ask for an improved rate or additional amenities. You never know, they might even say yes!
Look for vacation rental deals
Vacation rentals, like apartments or houses, are an ideal option for groups or families. And many times, they are less expensive than booking several hotel rooms.
Take advantage of credit card rewards
If you have a credit or debit card with travel rewards, use them to pay for your hotel and save more.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels may charge extra for things like cleaning or resort fees, so be sure to check the fine print prior to booking.
Find discounts or promotions
Many vacation and hotel accommodations offer promotions or discounts on items such as military personnel, students, as well as AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the most affordable deals can be found in smaller hotel chains, or in vacation rentals that aren’t as well-known.
Make sure you find pet-friendly accommodations
If you’re planning to travel with a pet consider looking for accommodations that are pet-friendly. These establishments may provide special discounts or deals for guests with pets.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer discounts or special offers that they promote on social media. Be sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
You can try a home-sitting job or a house-sitting
Home swapping or housesitting is the process of swapping houses with someone else which allows you to live in their home while they live in yours. This is a fantastic method to save on lodging while also enjoying your personal space.
Consider renting a campervan or RV
If you’re traveling with your group or family, renting a campervan or RV is the best method to save money on accommodations. In addition, you’ll have the chance to travel around the world and even have your own transportation in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents often have access to discounts and offers that aren’t offered to the general public. Plus, they can conduct the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
A flight, hotel, and rental car together as a package deal could sometimes save you money on each individual component.
Search for hostels
Hostels are an affordable option for solo travelers or groups of travelers. In addition, with the popularity of hostels that are boutique there are often comfortable, clean, and safe options.
Try home-sharing services
Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo are able to provide cheaper and exclusive accommodation options such as staying in a private space in a homeowner’s home or renting a whole home for a large number of people.
As a bonus here are some helpful tips to help you find cheap luggage
Shop at discount retailers
Discount stores like T.J. Maxx, Ross, and Marshalls usually have a range of luggage at reduced prices. Make sure you go through these stores before you buy from a traditional department store.
Find sales during off-season
Just like with accommodation You can usually find good deals on luggage during off-season or end-of-season sales. This is especially true for the stores that sell travel and outdoor gear.
Buy used or refurbished
You should consider purchasing used or recycled luggage. It’s a great way to save money on top-quality brands and you might be able to locate gently used luggage in near perfect quality. Websites like Amazon and Ebay are good choices, as are also local classifieds and garage sales.
In the end, finding cheap lodging and discounted luggage doesn’t need to mean you sacrifice the comfort or security. If you do a little research and creativity you can locate an ideal accommodation within your budget as well as amazing deals in luggage to take on your next trip. By comparison shopping by signing up to loyalty programs, booking early or last-minute and taking advantage of specials and discounts, or trying alternative options like rental homes and home sharing platforms to increase your spending and enjoy your travels to the maximum.