When you’re on the road, where you lay your head in the night can consume a large portion from your spending budget. But don’t worry, there’s plenty of options for finding affordable, safe and comfortable places to stay.
We find that traveling with children isn’t always taking the cheapest option and we’re looking to get the most price for our budget. We’re not so keen on roughing it as we used to be, but we need to cut costs.
Where and how you choose to stay will depend on a few things like:
- Your budget
- Your destination
- Your style of travel and comfort level
- Your size crew
- Your interests are important to you
Just remember that getting an offer of 15% off a room you don’t really need isn’t as effective as paying full price for a hotel you want. So, our goal is to help you save cash on accommodation and find a place you’re happy with.
As a family, we’ve switched around our accommodations over the years. In the case of longer travel, we’d prefer apartments due to their kitchens, separate bedrooms , and laundry facilities. Furthermore, we can share the cost with other families or friends. However, for shorter stays, we’re happy to stay in family-friendly hotels or hostels.
If you’re planning an extended journey around the world, try making more time in areas where you can save more and lowering your standards in countries that are more expensive.
Here are 18 tips for scoring great lodging deals:
Location, location, location!
It doesn’t make sense to pick a budget hotel if it’s miles away from everything and you have to spend extra on transportation. Look for places in central areas that are close to public transportation, airports, and things to do like restaurants, the beach, and parks.
Stay for more than one night
Some hotels provide better rates when you stay at least two nights. Sometimes you can even stay for four nights, and only pay for three.
Stay at the hotel on Sunday
Hotels tend to be less busy on Sundays, therefore you might be able to score a good deal. Plus, if you stay on a Sunday, you’ll stay clear of the check-in and check-out crowds on Monday and Friday.
Your weekdays can be your best friend
In certain cities, such as Las Vegas, hotels are more affordable on weekdays than weekends. Therefore, you can avoid the crowds and save cash by traveling midweek.
The off-season is the most enjoyable season
It’s not a surprise that hotels are more affordable in the off-season. If you’re able to travel during the shoulder season (between high and low), you can save money as well as avoid crowds, and enjoy decent weather.
Compare prices across different booking websites
Do not just book on the first site you discover. Compare rates across multiple sites to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
Sign up for loyalty programs
A lot of vacation rental and hotels offer loyalty programs where members earn rewards or discount on your next stay.
Pre-book or book last-minute
Sometimes, making reservations earlier can save you money or, in other instances waiting till the very last moment can result in a lower rate.
Do not be afraid to bargain
When you book directly with a hotel or vacation rental, don’t feel scared to request an improved rate or additional facilities. 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 are less expensive than booking several hotel rooms.
Make use of credit card rewards
If you have a credit or debit card that offers travel rewards, you can use the rewards for your lodging and save money.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels may charge extra fees for items such as resort or cleaning fees Be certain to check the fine print prior to making your booking.
Check for discounts or offers
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer discounts or promotions for military personnel, students as well as AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the best deals can be found in smaller hotels, independent establishments or rental properties that aren’t as popular.
Look for pet-friendly options
If you’re planning a trip with a pet consider looking for accommodations that are pet-friendly. These places may offer special deals or discounts for guests with pets.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals offer discounts or special offers which 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 when you swap houses with someone else, allowing you to reside in their house while they live in yours. It can be a wonderful option to save money on lodging while also enjoying your personal space.
Think about renting a campervan RV
If you’re traveling with your family or group hiring a campervan, or RV is an excellent method to save money on accommodations. Additionally, you’ll be able to travel around the world and have your own transportation all in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents often have access to discounts and special offers which aren’t accessible to the general public. Plus, they can conduct the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
Booking a hotel, flight, and rental car in a bundle deal can occasionally save cash on each component.
Hostels can be a cost-effective option for solo travelers or groups. With the rise of boutique hostels, you can often find comfortable, clean, and secure options.
Try home-sharing platforms
Home-sharing services like Airbnb and Vrbo are able to provide cheaper and exclusive accommodation options such as staying in a private room within a local’s home or renting a whole home for a large number of people.
As a bonus here are some helpful tips to find cheap luggage:
Shop at discount retailers
Discount retailers like T.J. Maxx, Ross, and Marshalls usually have a range of luggage at discounted prices. Make sure to go through these stores prior to purchasing at a department store that is more traditional.
Look for off-season sales
Similar to accommodation, you can often get good bargains on luggage during seasonal sales or the off-season. This is particularly true for the stores that sell travel and outdoor gear.
Buy refurbished or used
Consider buying used or refurbished luggage. This can be a great option to save money on high-end brands. You might be able to locate gently used luggage that is in perfect condition. Websites such as Amazon and Ebay are good choices, as are there are local classifieds as well as garage sales.
In conclusion, finding cheap accommodations and cheap luggage does not necessarily mean that you have to sacrifice security and comfort. With a bit of investigation and creativity you can locate a great place to stay within your budget and incredible bargains regarding luggage and luggage options for the next travels. By comparison shopping, signing up for loyalty programs, making bookings late or at the last minute and taking advantage of specials and discounts, and trying alternative options like home-sharing platforms and vacation rentals, you can stretch your budget further and enjoy your trip to the fullest.