Tips to Make Your Vacation More Affordable

Don’t let vacation costs sneak up on you. Explore ways to make your next getaway more affordable and just as fun.

Couple enjoying a sunset on vacation.

Everyone needs a vacation, but not every budget can afford it. Consider these simple ways to make that much-deserved getaway a reality.

  • Go off season. Avoid peak travel times and peak seasonal destinations.
  • Comparison shop. Browse your options before you book anything.
  • Book hotels directly. It’s often cheaper to go directly to the hotel’s website to book.
  • Join loyalty programs. Hotels and airlines offer added perks through their programs.
  • Go to the grocery store. Buy food at a store and eat in the park to save on restaurants.
  • Use surcharge-free ATMs. UW Credit Union is part of a nationwide ATM network.
  • Don’t exchange at the airport. Airport currency rates are notoriously bad, so see us first.
  • Make lunch your main meal. Restaurant meals are cheaper at lunchtime.

When planning your vacation expenses, keep a few key ideas in mind. How much to save all depends on what type of vacation you’ll be taking and how many people you’ll be paying for.

A weekend camping trip using your own equipment might only cost a couple of hundred dollars, factoring in campground fees, a cooler full of food and gas for the car. A week-long beach vacation could cost thousands of dollars, factoring in airfare and the cost of an all-inclusive resort. An extended European tour could cost even more, factoring in airfare, trains and car rentals, hotels, day excursions and meals out.

Wherever your vacation plans take you, some of the biggest expenses you can expect will be:

  • Transportation – Airfare, rental car, gas and tolls, public transportation, parking, etc.
  • Meals – Restaurants, snacks, drinks, etc.
  • Accommodation – Hotel, motel, campground, etc.
  • Activities/entertainment – Sightseeing excursions, admission tickets, etc.
  • Miscellaneous– Tipping, foreign exchange fees, travel insurance, souvenirs, etc.

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