When you’re on the road and you’re sleeping, the location you put your head at night can consume a large portion from your spending budget. However, don’t fret because there are many options to locate secure, affordable and cozy accommodation.
We find that traveling with children doesn’t mean going for the cheapest options – we want to get the most value for our dollars. We’re not as keen on roughing it as much as we used to be, but we need to cut costs.
What you do and where you decide to stay will depend on a number of factors like:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your travel style and level of comfort
- The size of your team
- Your interests
Just remember that getting a 15% discount on a room you don’t really like isn’t the same as paying the full cost for a hotel you want. So, our goal is to help you save money on lodging and to get the perfect place to stay.
As our family, we’ve shifted the way we travel throughout the years. For longer trips, we’re more comfortable in apartments as they come with kitchens, separate bedrooms , and laundry facilities. Furthermore, we can share the costs with other families or friends. For shorter stays, we’re more than happy to stay in hotels or family-friendly hostels.
If you’re planning to take an extended journey around the globe, you should consider making more time in areas 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 doesn’t make sense to choose a hotel that is cheap located far from everything and you have to spend extra on transportation. Consider hotels located in central areas near airports, public transportation and activities such as restaurants, the beach, and parks.
Stay longer than one night
Many places offer better deals when you stay more than two nights. Sometimes you can even stay four nights and only pay for three nights.
Hit in the Hotel on Sunday
Hotels tend to be less crowded on Sundays which means you’re likely to get a bargain. Also, if you book on a Sunday, you’ll be able to 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. Therefore, you can stay away from all the tourists and spare cash by traveling midweek.
The off-season is the most enjoyable season
It’s no surprise that hotels tend to be more expensive in the off-season. If you can travel during the shoulder season (between the peak season and off-peak), you can save money, avoid crowds and still enjoy decent weather.
Compare the prices of different booking websites
Do not just book on the first website you find. Compare the prices on multiple websites to ensure you’re getting the best price.
Sign up for loyalty programs
Many resorts and hotels offer loyalty programs where you can earn points or discount on future stays.
Make reservations early or at the last minute
Sometimes, making reservations early will save you money and other times, waiting till the very last moment may get you a discount.
Do not be afraid to bargain
When booking directly with a hotel or holiday rental, don’t be intimidated to ask for an improved rate or additional features. You never know, they might just say yes!
Look for vacation rental deals
Vacation rentals, like apartments or homes, can be an ideal option for groups or families. They can be less expensive than booking more hotel rooms.
Take advantage of rewards on credit cards
If you have a credit or debit card with travel rewards, make use of them to pay for your hotel and save even more money.
Check for hidden fees
Hotels or booking sites may charge extra for things like cleaning or resort fees, so be certain to read the fine print before making a booking.
Look for promotions or discounts
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer promotions or discounts for military personnel, students, or AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the best bargains can be found in smaller, independent hotels or rental properties that aren’t as popular.
Find pet-friendly places
If you’re planning a trip with a furry friend, look for pet-friendly options. Some places provide special discounts or deals for pet owners.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer special discounts or deals that they advertise via social media. Make sure you follow them on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Consider a home-sitting arrangement or house-swapping
Home swapping or housesitting is the process of swapping houses with someone else which allows you to stay in their home while they stay in yours. It can be a wonderful option to save money on accommodation while still being in your space.
Think about renting a campervan RV
If you’re traveling with a family or group hiring a campervan, or RV is an excellent method to save money on accommodation. In addition, you’ll have the chance to travel around the world and also have your own transportation all in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents can often access discounts and special offers that aren’t available to the general public. They can also do the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
Booking a flight, hotel, and rental car in a bundle deal can sometimes save you money on each individual component.
Search for hostels
Hostels are an affordable option for solo travelers or groups of travelers. With the rise of boutique hostels it is possible to find comfortable, clean, and safe alternatives.
Try home-sharing platforms
Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo can offer more affordable and unique 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 for finding cheap luggage:
Shop at discount retailers
Discount retailers like T.J. Maxx, Ross and Marshalls often carry a selection of luggage at discounted prices. Make sure to look these stores up before purchasing from a traditional department store.
Look for off-season sales
Just like with accommodation It is not uncommon to find good deals on luggage during seasonal sales or the off-season. This is especially true for outdoor and travel gear stores.
Buy refurbished or used
You should consider purchasing used or refurbished luggage. This can be a great method to save on high-end brands. You might be able to locate gently used luggage in near excellent condition. Websites such as Amazon and Ebay are good choices, as are as well as local classifieds and garage sales.
In the end, finding affordable accommodation and discount luggage doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice security and comfort. With a bit of research and imagination, you can find a great location to stay within your budget and incredible bargains in luggage to take on your next trip. By looking at prices by signing up to loyalty programs, booking early or last-minute booking, taking advantage of sales and discounts, as well as looking at alternative options such as holiday rentals and home-sharing platforms to stretch your budget further and enjoy your trip to the maximum.