Simple Ways to Save Money for Vacation

The way prices are these days with everything, there are some simple, practical, and realistic ways you can save money for vacation. If you have a family of four or more, you will especially want to know these money saving tips. There are ways to be able to go on vacation on a reasonable budget. But first I must say, that you should never go into debt to go on a vacation. save up! It will feel so much better when you come back and know that you don’t have to pay back with interest that meal you ate, that museum you visited, or that theme park you went to.

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If you have a warehouse membership such as Sam’s, Costco, or BJ’s, you can eat lunch or dinner there. This is not the fancy meal you may have envisioned or the healthiest, but if you especially have a large family, this will save you quite a bit of money. We have eaten here for lunch before while on vacation. They usually have pizza, burgers, and/or hot dogs with a drink, plus desserts like churros or ice cream very inexpensively.

Another way to save money on meals is to cut out one meal in the day. We usually do this with breakfast especially since our sons like to sleep in. We will eat lunch, dinner and have a snack somewhere between or in the evening. You’d be amazed how much you save on a 14 day vacation with one less meal! Now, if your hotel offers free breakfast, especially a hot breakfast not the continental kind, then eat that and have an early dinner. By the way, if they offer a continental breakfast, grab a few extra pieces of fruit and pack it with you for your snack later!

Look for a place that offers membership reciprocal benefits. If you know of a place you want to visit, see if they offer this on their website. Here’s an example. Our Florida Aquarium offers discounts or free entrance to other places you may want to go to known as the SHARE Program. Check out all the benefits!

Before we headed to the UK, I found out that we could visit six castles on one annual family membership on the Historic Royal Palaces than it would have been to pay for each of us at each different castle! It ended up being a huge savings!

Also, if you’ve never heard of it, your local library may offer free museum passes to certain museums. I talk all about it here under the library section.

Another way to save is by joining the NARM Association. NARM stands for North American Reciprocal Museum association.

The NARM Association is an extensive network of hundreds of cultural institutions across Bermuda, Canada, the Cayman Islands, Puerto Rico, Mexico and the United States, connecting their memberships for unprecedented access to arts, science, history, botanical gardens, and more.

One more way to save on places to go is by purchasing an annual membership pass to America the Beautiful entrance passes. If visiting as many national parks as possible is on your bucket list, then this is the way to go! You save an enormous amount of money especially if you’re a 4th grader, in the military, or a senior citizen! What a beautiful gift this would be as well as giving to someone. My mother has been able to get into for free at many places using this pass!

I strongly suggest that you shop the local supermarket. They have some of the best deals even if you just need a souvenir. This is especially true if you’re staying at a place that provides a full kitchen. Buy what you would if you were at home and cook it at your resort, Airbnb, condo rental, etc. If the place you’re staying at has an outdoor grill, cook outside. Fresh air is good for the soul so cook out and/or eat out in the patio area. If the supermarket has a loyalty card, sign up even if you’re just visiting and will probably never go back. You will get the same discounts every local gets. And again, if your hotel/resort provides a free hot breakfast, take advantage of that. That’s one less meal to buy!

You can find community events on the Visitor’s Bureau of the city you’ll be visiting or search on Facebook. Local community events are a great way to find free or nearly free events going on. Even if you’re having a staycation, you can tap into your local visitor’s bureau. Our visitor’s bureau where we live, for example, is Visit St. Pete/Clearwater.

You might be like “Yeah right! I barely have enough to live on.” There’s one thing I believe in and tell myself “Pay yourself like you were a bill.” This is one way we do this. Even if it’s just $50 a month that you put into this fund by the end of the year you will have $600. Yes, it may not be enough for even 1 international flight, but if you use it wisely you can have a lovely road trip. Food? Weren’t you going to eat anyway if you were at home? Hotel? Look for deals online. Even better, call the hotel directly. We have received better rates by calling the hotel directly (when not using our timeshare) than booking online. If you don’t ask, you will never get. Gas? Use the $600 you saved up plus whatever you would have used during those weeks of vacation. Instead of driving to work, to the store, etc. you’re driving to your destination(s).

Instead of that famous café you buy your coffee from everyday, limit it to twice a week. Shop the store ads and plan out your meals at home by using what’s on sale that week to save more money. In fact, I shop every two weeks because I plan out the meals every two weeks. I actually spend less money doing this than when I shopped every week.

I’m going to tell you exactly what I do to save up. Now, I like to save up for vacations, but of course, you can save up for whatever you need/want.

  1. I get paid to share my thoughts, ideas, suggestions, comments, etc. to specific brands and companies on User Testing. Sometimes it’s a 5 minute online survey and sometimes it’s a live one hour conference session. I have had success on this platform and have earned quite a bit.
  2. Very similar to the one above, I’m also a member of User Interviews. I simply share my opinions via online (different formats) and get paid.
  3. Shipt shopping is another way I have saved up money. I don’t do this one as often, but in reality any kind of side gig like this one can be a decent source of extra income. Some people who live in big cities have made this their sole work and earn a very good living!
  4. Fetch Rewards is one of the smartest (FREE) apps I’ve ever used! You can take a photo of the receipt EVERY time you get and you will accumulate points. Those points then turn into a gift card of your choice from the many that they have listed, which I have earned many from! If you want to join, click on the link and make sure you use my referral code R4YUW and you’ll automatically get thousands of points just for joining!
  5. Receipt Hog does the same as Fetch Rewards and I have also earned gift cards this way. Make sure to click the link and use the referral code slisk33.

In the grand scheme of things, the more money you save at home equals the money you can use while on vacation. If you can get a $50 Walmart gift card by using points on apps, for example, you can actually use that gift card later while on your vacation to cover food expenses.

Saving money for vacations doesn’t have to be out of your reach if you make it a priority. I hope you have gained some insight on these simple, practical, and realistic ways you can save money for vacation.

Check out these related posts of mine you might also like!

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