hotels_1Travelers are always thinking about their next trip and then they remember about the cost of travel – anything from gas prices, hotel rates, airfare and more. Even with a stronger dollar in Europe, travel is still getting more expensive every year. Thus, both luxury and budget travels are trying to find ways to afford a vacation.

After listening to Samantha Brown speak yesterday, my thoughts are even more so on how to get on the road. Here are the Top 5 Tips on How to on Vacation Costs some of our favorite travel tips for keeping you on the road this summer while still keeping your budget intact.

Use Regional Airports
Save the time and stop driving to those large international hotels. These days smaller regional airports offer cost effective smaller airlines to get you where you are going faster.  Leave early in the morning instead of the day before.  You save on wear and tear on your car, gas, time, and sanity when you choose this option.  When you search for these flights, sometimes they are almost the same price (sometimes) cheaper than the connecting flight alone. Smaller airports are after your business.

Try the New & Improved Budget Hotels
While traveling as a mom to soccer and volleyball tournaments, I used to dread the accommodations for the weekend. Yes cost effective, but bring on the Lysol. Budget hotels now mirror more of a boutique hotel.  They are only different than the larger resorts and timeshares by the way of fewer amenities. With the extra that many also offer such as a free daily breakfast, free Wi-Fi, a glass of wine at free happy hours and some even offer free dinners on certain nights, it almost becomes a no brainer.

Use a Voucher Website 

hotels_4Have you ever bought something and thought I bet there is a way to get a better price? I think this many times and it bothers me to know that somewhere I could get a discount, if I just knew it. Well, I have found one way that really surprised me.  I was looking at one of the larger discount websites and was then determined to see if I could get a cheaper hotel rate.  One would think that this would be the very deepest discount.

After a bit of googling around, I found the website VoucherBin. I thought that there was no way to get a better deal than a discount hotel website, but guess what? VoucherBin had a discount for  I had not idea these great deals existed, so I just had to share with you this amazing information. It was an additional 7% off the already discounted price. That is enough to make me a believer in using vouchers.

Also if the hotel is a sister version of your fave luxury brand, the bed may be upgraded to their signature line of bedding. Also I have noticed the Marriott brand features Speakman shower  in their lower priced brands too.  These are the gold standard of shower heads.  You may be surprised at just how comfortable you can become at these type of hotels.

Try a Staycation
Consider being a tourist in our own backyard? Why wait for company to visit to explore our own cities? You can still stay overnight at a hotel, so you can take in as many sights as possible. Do you drive by a museum, winery, brewery or an art gallery often in your daily life? Take the time to go visit these locations and be more knowledgeable about the place that you dwell.

Travel Light

I have decided that traveling light does not just save you money but sanity and a sore back. Airlines now charge for bags that you check. So try to pack lighter than you normally do. Choosing the right luggage can really help.  Remember you can always buy it when you get there.  Check out these packing tips!