While traveling and you’re sleeping, the location you put your head during the night could consume a large portion of your budget. But don’t worry, there’s plenty of ways to find secure, affordable and cozy places to stay.
We find that traveling with kids doesn’t always mean taking the cheapest option and we’re looking to get the most value for our dollars. We’re not as down for roughing it as we used do, yet 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 style of travel and comfort level
- How big is your team
- Your interests
Just remember that getting 15% off the room you don’t like isn’t the same as paying full price for a room you really want. Our goal is to help you save cash on accommodation and find the perfect place to stay.
As as a family, we’ve changed around our accommodations over the years. For longer trips, we’d prefer apartments due to their kitchens, separate bedrooms , and laundry facilities. Plus, we can split the cost of our trip with our friends or families. However, for short stays, we’re happy to stay in family-friendly hotels or hostels.
If you’re planning to take an extended trip around the globe, consider taking a longer trip to places where your money goes further and lower your standards in more expensive 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 if it’s miles away from everything and you have to shell out more money for transportation. Find hotels in central locations near airports, public transportation and activities, like restaurants, the beach, and parks.
Stay for more than one night
A lot of hotels offer discounts when you stay at least two nights. There are times when you can stay for four nights and pay for three nights.
Stay at in the Hotel on Sunday
Hotels are less busy on Sundays, which means you’re likely to get a bargain. If you decide to 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 some cities, like Las Vegas, hotels are less expensive on weekdays than weekends. So, stay away from tourist crowds, and also save some cash by traveling midweek.
Off-season is when the best season is
It’s no surprise that hotels are more affordable in the off-season. If you can travel in the shoulder season (between high and low) you’ll cut costs while avoiding crowds and enjoy decent weather.
Compare the prices of different booking sites
Don’t just book through the first website you find. 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 where you can earn points and discounts for future stays.
Pre-book or book last-minute
Sometimes, making reservations earlier can offer a better price or, in other instances waiting to the end of the day can get you a discount.
Do not be afraid to bargain
When booking directly with a hotel , or vacation rental, don’t be afraid to ask for a better rate or extra amenities. There’s no way to know if they might even say yes!
Look for vacation rental deals
Rentals for vacation, such as apartments or houses, are an ideal option for families or groups. They can be cheaper than booking multiple hotel rooms.
Make use of rewards on credit cards
If you have a credit card that has travel rewards, use the rewards for lodging and save more.
Check for hidden fees
Certain booking sites or hotels may charge extra fees for items like cleaning or resort fees, so be certain to check the fine print prior to making a booking.
Look for promotions or discounts
A lot of hotels and vacation rental properties offer discounts or promotions for students, military personnel, or AAA members.
Check for hidden gems
Sometimes, the best deals can be found in smaller, independent hotels or rental properties that aren’t as well-known.
Look for pet-friendly options
If you’re planning to travel with a pet, look for pet-friendly options. Some places offer discounts or special offers for pet owners.
Utilize social media
Many hotels and vacation rentals have special deals or discounts that they advertise through 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 when you exchange houses with someone else and live in their home while they live in yours. This is a fantastic method to save on accommodation while still being in your space.
You might want to consider renting a campervan, or an RV
If you’re traveling as a group of people, renting a campervan or RV could be an excellent method to save money on lodging. Additionally, you’ll be able to visit different locations and even have your own transportation all in one!
Use a travel agent
Travel agents often have access to discounts and offers which aren’t accessible to the general public. They can also perform the research and comparison shopping for you.
Book a package deal
Booking a hotel, flight and rental vehicle together as a package deal could often save you money on each of the components.
Search for hostels
Hostels can be a cost-effective choice for solo travellers or groups. In addition, with the popularity of hostels that are boutique, you can often find cozy, clean and secure options.
Explore home-sharing platforms
Home-sharing services like Airbnb and Vrbo can offer more affordable and exclusive accommodation options like staying in a private space in a homeowner’s home or renting a complete home for a large number of people.
In addition, here are some helpful tips to help you find cheap luggage
Shop at discount retailers
Discount stores like T.J. Maxx, Ross and Marshalls often carry a selection of luggage at discounted prices. Be sure to go through these stores before purchasing from a traditional department store.
Look for off-season sales
Just like with accommodation You can usually find good deals on luggage in the seasonal sales or the off-season. This is especially true of the stores that sell travel and outdoor gear.
Buy refurbished or used
Take a look at buying second-hand or used luggage. This can be a great option to save money on high-end brands. You might be able to locate lightly used luggage in excellent condition. Websites like Amazon and Ebay have good 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 security and comfort. With a little bit of research and creativity, you can find an ideal location to stay within your budget as well as amazing discounts on luggage for your next travels. By comparison shopping and signing up for loyalty programs, booking early or last-minute booking, taking advantage of sales and discounts, and exploring other options such as rental homes and home sharing platforms to stretch your budget further and enjoy your travels to the maximum.