If you’re traveling and you’re sleeping, the location you put your head during the night could consume a large portion of the budget. However, don’t fret because there are plenty of options for finding affordable, safe and comfortable accommodations.
We find that traveling with kids doesn’t always mean taking the cheapest option and we’re looking to get the best value for our budget. We’re not as keen on roughing it as we used to be, but we want to save some dough.
The place and the way you decide to stay depends on a few things like:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your style of travel and comfort level
- The size of your team
- Your interests
Just remember that getting a 15% discount on an accommodation you don’t like isn’t the same than paying full price for a place you do. Our goal is to make it easier for you to save cash on accommodation and find the perfect place to stay.
As a family, we’ve switched the way we travel throughout the years. When we travel for longer periods, we’d prefer apartments because they have kitchens, separate bedrooms and laundry facilities. Plus, we can split the costs with other families or friends. But for shorter stays, we’re happy to stay in family-friendly hotels or hostels.
If you’re planning to take an extended journey around the globe, consider taking a longer trip to places that will make your money go further and lower your standards in more costly countries.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It’s not logical to choose a hotel that is cheap in a location that is miles from everything , and you’ll need to shell out more money for transportation. Find hotels in central areas that are close to public transportation, airports and activities like restaurants, the beach and parks.
Stay more than one night
Some hotels provide better rates if you stay for more than two nights. In some cases, you can stay four nights and only pay for three nights.
Hit the hotel on Sunday
Hotels tend to be less busy on Sundays, so you may be able to get a bargain. Plus, if you stay on a Sunday, you’ll be able to avoid the lines at check-ins and outs on Monday and Friday.
Weekdays are your friend
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are more affordable during the week than weekends. Also, try to get away from all the tourists and spare some money by travelling during the week.
Off-season is the best-season
It’s not a surprise that hotels tend to be more expensive during the off-season. If you’re able to travel in the shoulder season (between the peak season and off-peak), you can cut costs, avoid crowds and still enjoy a pleasant conditions.
Compare the prices of different booking websites
Do not book on the first website you find. Compare rates across multiple sites to ensure you’re getting the best price.
Sign up for loyalty programs
Many resorts and hotels offer loyalty programs in which members earn rewards or discount for future stays.
Book early or last-minute
Sometimes, making reservations earlier can offer a better price and other times staying up to the end of the day may get you a discount.
Do not be afraid of negotiating
When booking directly with a hotel or vacation rental, don’t feel intimidated to ask for more value or amenities. You never know, they might just say yes!
Look for vacation rental deals
Vacation rentals, like apartments or homes, can be ideal for families or groups. And many times, they are less expensive than booking more hotel rooms.
Benefit from credit card rewards
If you own a credit card that offers travel rewards, you can use these rewards to cover your hotel and save money.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels may charge extra fees for items like resort or cleaning charges So be certain to be aware of the fine print before making your booking.
Check for discounts or offers
Many vacation and hotel accommodations offer promotions or discounts for things like military personnel, students or AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the best bargains can be found at smaller hotels, independent establishments or vacation rentals that aren’t as popular.
Find pet-friendly places
If you’re planning to travel with your pet, look for pet-friendly options. Some places offer special deals or discounts for guests who have pets.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals have special deals or discounts that they promote via social media. So 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 a different person which allows you to stay in their home while they stay in yours. This is a fantastic method to save on accommodation while still enjoying your personal space.
Consider renting a campervan or RV
If you’re traveling as a group or family, renting a campervan or RV could be the best method to save money on accommodations. In addition, you’ll have the chance to explore different places and have the convenience of your own vehicle all in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents can often access discounts and offers which aren’t accessible to the general people. Additionally, they are able to conduct the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
A flight, hotel, and rental car as a package deal can occasionally save cash on each component.
Look for hostels
Hostels can be a cost-effective alternative for solo travelers as well as groups. And with the popularity of hostels that are boutique it is possible to find comfortable, clean, and safe alternatives.
Explore home-sharing platforms
Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo provide more affordable and unique accommodation options, like staying in a private room in a home owned by a local or renting a whole house for a large group.
As a bonus here are some helpful tips to 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 to go through these stores before you buy from a department store.
Look for off-season sales
Like with accommodations, you can often get great deals on luggage during the sale season’s off or at the end of the season. This is especially true for outdoor and travel gear stores.
Buy refurbished or used
Take a look at buying second-hand or used luggage. This can be a great way to save money on high-end brands. You could find gently used luggage that is in excellent condition. Websites like Amazon and Ebay offer a variety of options, and also local classifieds and garage sales.
In conclusion, finding cheap accommodations and cheap luggage does not necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice comfort and safety. With a little bit of investigation and creativity it is possible to find an ideal place to stay within your budget as well as amazing deals on luggage for your next trip. By comparing prices and signing up for loyalty programs, booking early or last-minute, taking advantage of promotions and discounts, as well as exploring other options such as home-sharing platforms and vacation rentals, you can extend your budget and enjoy your travels to the maximum.