When you’re on the road, where you lay your head in the night can take up a significant portion of your budget. But worry not, there’s plenty of options for finding affordable, safe and comfortable places to stay.
Traveling with kids doesn’t always mean taking the cheapest option – we want to get the best price for our budget. We’re not as keen on roughing it as we used have been, however we still would like to save money.
The place and the way you decide to live depends on a few things like:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your travel style and comfort level
- Your size crew
- Your interests are important to you
Remember that getting an offer of 15% off a room you don’t really want isn’t as good as paying the full cost for a place you do. Therefore, our aim is to assist you in saving money on accommodation and get the perfect place to stay.
As our family, we’ve shifted up our accommodation preferences over the years. When we travel for longer periods, we’re more comfortable in apartments due to their kitchens, separate bedrooms , and laundry facilities. Plus, we can split the cost of our trip with friends or other families. However, for shorter stays, we’re more than happy to stay in family-friendly hotels or hostels.
If you’re taking an extended trip around the globe, you should consider making more time in areas that will make your money go further and lower your standards in countries that are more expensive.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It’s not sensible to pick a budget hotel located far from all amenities and you need to spend extra on transportation. Look for places in central areas near airports, public transportation and activities, like restaurants, the beach and parks.
Stay longer than one night
A lot of hotels offer discounts If you stay for two or more nights. Sometimes you can even stay for four nights and pay for three nights.
Stay at in the Hotel on Sunday
Hotels tend to be less crowded on Sundays, which means you’re likely to score a good deal. Also, if you book on a Sunday, you’ll stay clear of the check-in and check-out crowds on Monday and Friday.
Weekdays are your friend
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are cheaper on weekdays than weekends. Therefore, you can avoid the crowds and save cash by traveling midweek.
Off-season is when the best season is
It’s no surprise that hotels are more affordable during off-season. If you can travel in the shoulder season (between the peak season and off-peak) you’ll cut costs while avoiding crowds and enjoy decent conditions.
Compare prices across different booking sites
Don’t just book through the first site you discover. Compare the prices on multiple websites to make sure you’re getting the best price.
Sign up for loyalty programs
Many vacation rental and hotels offer loyalty programs in which guests can accumulate points or discount on future stays.
Make reservations early or at the last minute
Sometimes, making reservations early will save you money, while other times staying up till the very last moment may score you a discounted rate.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate
When booking directly with a hotel or vacation rental, don’t feel intimidated to ask for more value or features. There’s no way to know if they may just agree!
Look for vacation rental deals
Apartments, such as vacation rentals or homes, can be a great option for groups or families. In many cases, they are less expensive than booking more hotel rooms.
Benefit from credit card rewards
If you have a credit or debit card that has travel rewards, use them to pay for lodging and save money.
Check for hidden fees
Some booking websites or hotels might charge additional fees for things like resort or cleaning charges, so be sure to read the fine print before making your booking.
Look for promotions or discounts
A lot of hotels and vacation rental properties offer specials 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 at smaller hotel chains, or in holiday rentals that aren’t popular.
Find pet-friendly places
If you’re traveling with your pet, look for pet-friendly options. These establishments may provide special discounts or deals for pet owners.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals have special deals or discounts which they promote via social media. Make sure you keep up with them via Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.
Try a house-sitting or home-swapping
Housesitting, also known as home swapping, is when you swap houses with someone else, allowing you to stay in their home while they stay in yours. This can be a great method to save on accommodation while still having your own space.
You might want to consider renting a campervan, or an RV
If you’re traveling with your group of people hiring a campervan, or RV can be an excellent method to save money on lodging. Plus, you’ll be able to explore different places and also have the convenience of your own vehicle all in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents are often able to access discounts and special offers which aren’t accessible to the general people. Plus, they can perform the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
Booking a hotel, flight, and rental car in a bundle deal can often save you money on each of the components.
Hostels are an affordable alternative for solo travelers as well as groups. In addition, with the rise of boutique hostels, you can often find safe, comfortable, and secure options.
Try home-sharing services
Home-sharing platforms such as Airbnb and Vrbo provide more affordable and distinctive accommodation options, for example, staying in a room in a home owned by a local or renting a whole home for a large number of people.
As a bonus here are some tips to 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 look these stores up before you buy from a traditional department store.
Look for off-season sales
Like with accommodations, you can often find good 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 used or refurbished
Take a look at buying second-hand or refurbished luggage. This is a fantastic method to save on the top brands, and you might be able to locate lightly used luggage in perfect quality. Websites such as Amazon and Ebay have good options and as well as local classifieds and garage sales.
In the end, finding cheap lodging and discounted luggage doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice the comfort or security. If you do a little investigation and creativity, you can find the perfect location to stay within your budget as well as amazing deals in luggage to take on your next travels. By comparing prices by signing up to loyalty programs, making bookings in advance or last-minute and taking advantage of specials and discounts, and looking at alternative options such as home-sharing platforms and vacation rentals to extend your budget and enjoy your trip to the maximum.