While traveling, where you lay your head in the night can eat up a big chunk of your budget. However, don’t fret because there are plenty of options for finding secure, affordable and cozy accommodations.
We find that traveling with children doesn’t mean taking the cheapest option – we want to get the best value for our dollars. We’re not as keen on roughing it as we used do, yet we would like to save money.
What you do and where you decide to live depends on several factors, including:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your style of travel and comfort level
- How big is your team
- Your interests are important to you
Just remember that getting 15% off the room you don’t want isn’t as good as paying the full cost for a place you do. Our goal is to make it easier for you to save money on accommodation and get a place you’re happy with.
As as a family, we’ve changed around our accommodations over the years. In the case of longer travel, we prefer apartments as they come with bedrooms that are separate from the kitchen, as well as laundry facilities. Plus, we can split the cost with our friends or families. For shorter stays, we’re happy to stay in family-friendly hotels or hostels.
If you’re taking an extended journey around the world, try making more time in areas that will make your money go further and reduce your expectations in countries that are more expensive.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It doesn’t make sense to find a cheap hotel in a location that is miles from everything and you have to pay more for transportation. Look for places in central areas that are close to airports, public transportation and other things to do such as restaurants, the beach and parks.
Stay longer than one night
Some hotels provide better rates If you stay for more than two nights. In some cases, you can stay for four nights, and only pay for three nights.
Hit in the Hotel on Sunday
Hotels are less crowded on Sundays, therefore you might be able to get a bargain. If you decide to stay on a Sunday, you’ll stay clear of the crowds at check-in and checkout on Fridays and Mondays.
Your weekdays can be your best friend
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are less expensive during the week than weekends. Also, try to stay away from tourist crowds, and also save some money by going during the week.
Off-season is the best-season
It’s not a surprise that hotels are cheaper during the off-season. If you can travel during the shoulder season (between high and low), you can cut costs while avoiding crowds and have decent weather.
Compare prices across different booking sites
Do not just book on the first website you find. Compare the prices on multiple websites to ensure you’re getting the most value for money.
Make sure you sign up for loyalty programs
Many hotels and vacation rental companies have loyalty programs through which you can earn points or discounts for future stays.
Make reservations early or at the last minute
Sometimes, booking early can get you a better deal, while other times staying up until the last minute can score you a discounted rate.
Do not be afraid of negotiating
If you are booking directly with a hotel or vacation rental, don’t be intimidated to ask for more value or amenities. There’s no way to know if they might even say yes!
Look for vacation rental deals
Vacation rentals, like apartments or houses, are an ideal option for families or groups. And many times, they can be cheaper than booking several hotel rooms.
Benefit from rewards on credit cards
If you have a credit card that has travel rewards, use these rewards to cover lodging and save more.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels may charge extra for things like cleaning or resort fees, so be certain to check the fine print prior to booking.
Check for discounts or offers
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer promotions or discounts on items such as students, military personnel, and AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the most affordable deals are found in smaller, independent hotels or rental properties that aren’t as popular.
Make sure you find pet-friendly accommodations
If you’re traveling with a furry friend, look for pet-friendly options. Some places provide special discounts or deals for pet owners.
Utilize social media
Many vacation and hotel accommodations have special deals or discounts that they promote on social media. Be sure to be following them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Try a house-sitting or home-swapping
Housesitting or home swapping is the process of swapping houses with another person and stay in their home while they reside in yours. It can be a wonderful way to save money on accommodation while still being in your space.
Think about renting a campervan RV
If you’re traveling as a family or group renting a campervan or RV can be an excellent way to save money on accommodation. Plus, you’ll be able to explore different places and even have your own transportation in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents can often access discounts and offers that aren’t available to the general public. Plus, they can do the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
A hotel, flight and rental vehicle together in a bundle deal can sometimes save you money on each individual component.
Search for hostels
Hostels can be a cost-effective choice for solo travellers or groups of travelers. In addition, with the rise of boutique hostels, you can often find comfortable, clean, and safe alternatives.
Try home-sharing services
Home-sharing services like Airbnb and Vrbo are able to provide cheaper and exclusive accommodation options like staying in a private space in a homeowner’s home or renting a whole house for a large gathering.
In addition, Here are some suggestions to help you find cheap luggage
Shop at discount retailers
Discount stores like T.J. Maxx, Ross, and Marshalls typically have a variety of luggage at discounted prices. Make sure you go through these stores before purchasing from a traditional department store.
Find sales during off-season
Similar to accommodation, you can often get great deals on luggage during seasonal sales or the off-season. This is especially true for outdoor and travel gear stores.
Buy used or refurbished
Consider buying used or refurbished luggage. This is a fantastic method to save on the top brands, and you may be able to find lightly used luggage in excellent condition. Websites like Amazon and Ebay offer a variety of options, and there are local classifieds as well as garage sales.
In the end, finding cheap lodging and discounted luggage doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice comfort and safety. If you do a little research and imagination it is possible to find an ideal location to stay within your budget as well as amazing deals in luggage to take on your next travels. By comparing prices, signing up for loyalty programs, booking early or last-minute, taking advantage of promotions and discounts, and looking at alternative options such as holiday rentals and home-sharing platforms, you can stretch your budget further and enjoy your trip to the maximum.