When planning a short break away, there are several ways in which you can save money with some prior planning to your trip. These five tips below are just some of the tips which you could implement for a great money saving approach to your holiday.
First thing is first; making your holiday booking by deciding on the location, dates, price and hotel that suit your needs best. Always shop around online first and use comparison websites to ensure that you find the best deals financially.
Depending on when you travel and if you can afford to be very flexible with the times you go away, then look out for last minute breaks. This is because you could make a great money saving, as airlines just want people on seats at late dates, and hotels simply want rooms filled and booked.
2. Daily Food and Drink
Now this option will depend on how long you are going away for, and if you want to make these preparations in advance. Taking along your own breakfast food or snacks to a budget chain hotel can actually save you a fortune. If you are happy with fruit, croissants, orange juice and tea and coffee, then why not pop to your supermarket before you travel, and stock up on a few of these breakfast items.
You do not even need fresh milk for the ideas suggested above. However, if you like porridge, you can even purchase individual porridge pots to which you simply add boiling water.
Check online before you make your visit to find out if your hotel room will supply a kettle. This could be very useful for the above breakfast ideas. If not, why not simply take a long a mini travel kettle on your journey. In addition, this can be great for sterilizing water for drinking by boiling it first in other countries too.
A mini travel kettle will always come in useful, from camping trips to taking away to university or on a business trip. I have used my one for years.
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Sometimes free wifi access is included in the booking of your hotel room, or will even be available in your hotel lobby area. If so, then this can be a fantastic advantage. However, many hotels prefer to cash-in on tourists and travelers by imposing an additional charge for wifi access. If internet connectivity is not available to you in the hotel, and you would prefer to have free wifi once you arrive, then look into the local cafes and restaurants in the area which have free wifi accessibility before you make your journey. The crucial point to this research is that you conduct it prior to traveling; otherwise you will not be able to look up these locations!
Print a map of the places that interest you to get wifi, and take this map along with you on your mini break. Even if you just stop by in one of them to pick up a coffee and check your emails, it can be very handy to know this information, especially if your work requires it or if you need to contact family or friends. You will save money because some hotels often charge very high rates for wifi access otherwise.
4. Leisure Activities and Eating Out
This tip is also all about the prior preparation. If you have explored the shops, restaurants and cafes as mentioned above in tip three online beforehand, then you will have a good idea of where you can go for great meals or snacks.
However, have you also thought to check out restaurant's websites in case they have printable discount vouchers, happy hours, early bird deals and so on? This can be an excellent way to save a few pennies, putting them back in your pocket. You could manage to rake up quite a saving too, depending on the length of your stay and on how many nights you plan to eat out in restaurants.
Are you planning on visiting specific museums, galleries, places of cultural interest or on doing activities such as swimming, bowling or horse riding? If so, then look up these activities before you travel and book them in advance.
This can help act to put your mind at rest as you will be safe in the knowledge that you can get in that specific restaurant and so on. This can be particularly helpful in school holidays, at weekends and during summer months when there is great weather, and consequently when there will be much more competition from people who will be having the same ideas as you.
Whilst you may be thinking that you do not have time to do all this extra planning and that you would prefer to simply enjoy your trip, instead, think of all the money that you could save to put towards your next holiday! If you are going in a group, then you could designate these tasks to different people. For example, one person could be in charge of looking up the restaurants, whilst another would focus on the leisure activities and someone else could home in on all the local free wifi spots for you all to enjoy. This would save you all more money and time once you arrive in your destination.
5. Technology Preparation
It may seem obvious, but always charge your mobile phone, laptop, camera or any other technology that you are planning on taking whilst on your trip, beforehand. From a kindle to an iPad, the last thing you want is to be running out of battery completely on the day you arrive.
Therefore, it goes without saying that you could pack the chargers for these devices as well. However, depending on the length of your stay, you may not wish to transport all these cables and chargers about with you. This is where the prior preparation of charging all your devices beforehand will be very helpful, especially on a short weekend away trip.
You will feel extremely organised and on top of things if you manage to achieve this step before your mini break too. You will feel more relaxed and able to enjoy the stay better if you do not experience little frustrating issues such as running out of power on your phone. This could also be very useful in an emergency too.
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It could be important if you are using an app on your phone as a sat nav (or satellite navigation) to a destination, or if you are in the middle of the day taking memorable photos. Preparation is the key to success in all of these tips, and especially when it comes to technological devices.
In addition, traveling mid-week whenever this is possible, could save you money off your booking. Traveling in a group will also cut back on your petrol costs if you are driving to your destination. Also, before making your journey, explore car hire options if this is of importance to you. You never know if you could make a saving for booking this online beforehand, or even if you could locate a discount voucher code online too.
Lastly, save a few more pennies when you travel away from home by making sure that all of your electric appliances that you are not using at home are turned off at the wall. Certainly, freezers and fridges need to stay plugged in. But devices such as the kettle, toaster, radio and other similar electrical items do not need to be set to standby. It may seem a small act, but when on standby these devices are still drawing electricity from the wall and costing you money. It only takes a second to switch them off at the wall too.
Below is a YouTube video from Jeff Yeager and his channel ‘The Cheap Life’. He injects fast-paced humor with rapid scenery changes to convey some simple and yet effective money saving travel advice.