Already booked the trip? 5 ways you can still save money


A vacation is an opportunity to escape reality and enjoy downtime, but it isn’t without costs. Whether you’re planning a quick getaway or a weeklong trip, you can’t avoid the expense of transportation, food, accommodations and entertainment — even if you shop around for the best bargains.

But what if you’ve already booked an upcoming vacation? No worries, there are still ways to save money.

The more you save, the more cash you have for the experience. Here are five ways to save money on your trip after booking.

Skip meals at the airport

Airlines and airport vendors often charge more for food because passengers don’t have any other choice, according to Max Robinson of Mahlatini Luxury Travel. If you want to save on your trip, bring your own food.

“Due to carry-on restrictions, you can’t get too adventurous with the food you bring, but sandwiches and small snacks like carrot sticks are still perfectly acceptable,” Robinson said.

Don’t eat out every day

Food is also an expense on vacation because you’re eating out for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Granted, most people don’t want to cook while traveling. If your hotel room has a small kitchenette, prepare some of your meals in the room to save money and avoid a common travel expense.

If your room doesn’t have a kitchen, Danielle Isbell, a writer and photographer at Snaps Scribbles and Suitcases, offered this cost-effective option: “When you do eat out, eat out for lunch or breakfast. They tend to be cheaper than dinners.”

Avoid a foreign transaction fee

Traveling abroad with a credit card can be safer and more convenient. You don’t have to deal with currency exchange or fear losing your cash. But if you bring the wrong credit card, you could get hit with foreign transaction fees.

“For those traveling internationally, make sure to sign up for or bring a credit card with no foreign transaction fees,” warned Natasha Rachel Smith, global head of communications and public relations at “Between hotel stays, entertainment, dining, traveling and buying mementos, fees of a couple of dollars here and there can add up without you realizing until your bill comes.”

Search for local discounts

Before paying full price for restaurants, entertainment and other activities, check local deal sites in search of discounts. You might find a multi-day tour pass for discounts on admission to museums and other attractions. Additionally, some attractions might offer a discount if you’re an auto club or credit card rewards member.

Thanks to your credit card, you can travel the world for practically free.

Patti Reddi, writer for the travel website, suggested Groupon. “Look at Groupon for discounts to attractions and activities you’re interested in,” she said. “It frequently offers tours and other local activities at a discount.”

Purchase a hop-on, hop-off tour

If you plan on hitting several tourist spots in a single day, taking a taxi from location to location can get expensive. To explore your destination on the cheap, purchase a hop-on-hop-off tour, if available. These tours give you a view of the whole city, and you can get off at each site and catch a later tour bus to go to the next site, saving on travel costs between destinations, according to Justin Pollack of TopView Sightseeing Tours in New York City.

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