Saving Money

Want an Affordable Vacation? How to Make Your DREAM Vacation Financially Possible

July 4, 2023
Looking for an affordable vacation? These 10 tips will help you take your dream vacation without breaking the bank!
Britt and Laurie-Anne two women laughing and looking at their computers on a couch in a well-styled living room
Britt & Laurie Anne
Two female investors in their 30s with a collective net wealth of over $6 million+
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I’m guessing that you have some vacation you’ve always dreamed of – like wine-tasting in Italy, hiking Machu Picchu, exploring the ancient ruins of Greece, or a family mountain vacation in North Carolina.

But, if you’re like a lot of people, the thing holding you back from booking that vacation is money.

But what if you could have an affordable vacation that matches your dream trip?

My hope for you is that money supports you and enables you to live the life you want, instead of holding you back. So let’s talk about easy, practical tips to make the vacation of your dreams attainable and affordable.

1) Define Your Dream

The first step in making your dream vacation affordable is to clearly define what you want from the experience. Identify the key elements that make it special to you and pinpoint the experiences you want the most.

Is it lounging on pristine beaches, exploring historical sites, or immersing yourself in a vibrant culture?

By understanding your priorities, you can allocate your budget accordingly and focus on what matters most to you.

This isn’t about cutting out every possible expense – it’s getting crystal clear on what means the most to you so you can spend money on the things that will enhance your vacation instead of wasting money on forgettable things that don’t really matter to you.

That said, be sure to leave room for spontaneity.

2) Plan and Save Ahead

Time is a valuable asset when it comes to making your dream vacation affordable. Start planning well in advance to allow for saving and research.

Set a realistic vacation budget by thinking about how much factors like transportation, accommodation, meals, activities, and souvenirs will cost.

Break down your budget into manageable savings goals and establish a dedicated savings plan. Consistently putting money aside over time will help you accumulate the necessary funds.

3) Be Flexible

Flexibility is key to finding affordable travel options. Explore different travel dates and be open to adjusting your itinerary based on the best deals and opportunities that arise. Also, consider traveling during shoulder seasons or off-peak times when prices tend to be lower.

Being flexible with your destination can also lead to significant cost savings. Think about how you can stay true to the core of your dream while keeping it more affordable.

For instance, if you want a rest-filled beach vacation, instead of going to the Maldives, maybe you could book a resort in Jamaica.

Keep an open mind and be willing to discover new and exciting places that may offer similar experiences at a lower price.

Traveling during the off-season can save you a lot of money on airfare, accommodations, and activities.

Bonus: you don’t have to fight crowds as much.

4) Hunt for Deals

To make your dream vacation more affordable, take advantage of deals, promotions, and discounts. Sign up for newsletters and travel alerts from airlines, hotels, and online travel agencies to stay up-to-date on special offers.

Utilize comparison websites and travel apps – like Going or Skyscanner – to find the best prices on flights, accommodations, and activities. Comparison shopping can help you secure the most competitive rates available.

Be sure to look into what benefits you can get with your credit cards too. Some may offer rewards points or cash back on travel purchases – or access to airport priority lounges.

ThePoints is a great website to help you find travel deals, and they maintain lists of the best credit cards for travelers – just make sure to double-check any annual fees and make sure it’s worth it.

Want tips on how to use a credit card responsibly? Read this!

5) Book Accommodation Alternatives

Think beyond traditional hotels when it comes to accommodations. Explore alternative options such as vacation rentals, homestays, guesthouses, or house-sitting opportunities.

Platforms like Airbnb and Vrbo offer a wide range of affordable options that provide unique experiences and can often be more budget-friendly than upscale hotels.

You can also look for vacation packages. Some hotels and resorts offer vacation packages that include airfare, accommodations, and activities at a discounted price.

If you’re a prolific traveler, you may even save money by investing in a travel van. Britt and her husband bought a van off of Facebook Marketplace, renovated it to add storage, solar power, and a bed, and now they love to roll out on an exciting road trip.

You can check out their van here!

Remember that just because you want an affordable option doesn’t mean you should sacrifice on quality. Research and read reviews to ensure the accommodation meets your needs and preferences.

6) Explore Transportation Hacks

Transportation expenses can significantly impact your overall travel budget. Look for cost-effective transportation options such as budget airlines or discounted fares.

Use flight comparison tools to find the best prices and be flexible with your departure and arrival airports.

Once you’ve reached your destination, consider traveling by bus or train for shorter distances. Or explore public transportation options at your destination. A lot of big cities have scooters or bikes available for rent.

If you’re staying in the heart of a city, then maybe you can just walk. When I visited Boston, I took a free shuttle to the hotel and then did a walking tour of the city. It costs nothing and taking things a little slower helps you see and explore the city more and maybe notice some things and places you wouldn’t have whizzing by in a car.

7) Embrace Local Cuisine

Dining out for every meal can quickly add up. Instead of going to Pinterest and Yelp for the best-reviewed restaurants for every meal, embrace the local cuisine and save money by exploring local markets, street food vendors, and affordable eateries.

In my personal opinion, hole-in-the-wall places can have some of the most delicious, mouth-watering food – and the most affordable prices.

Not only will you get a taste of the authentic flavors of your destination, but you'll also save on dining expenses.

Also, consider accommodations with kitchen facilities to prepare some of your own meals. This allows you to experience local grocery shopping and further reduce dining costs.

Again, there’s nothing wrong with enjoying some meals at a nice restaurant – especially if that’s important to you and something you’ve built into your budget. These are just some tips to make eating out a little more affordable.

8) Wander Off the Beaten Path

Discovering hidden gems and off-the-beaten-path destinations can offer unique experiences while being more budget-friendly compared to popular tourist hotspots…like visiting the lavender fields and German-inspired architecture in Fredericksburg, Texas.

These lesser-known areas often have lower accommodation prices, cheaper dining options, and fewer crowds.

Research and explore alternative destinations that offer similar attractions or natural beauty to your dream location, allowing you to create unforgettable memories at a fraction of the cost.

9) Pack Smart

Packing strategically can save you money on baggage fees and unnecessary expenses. Travel light by packing versatile clothing items that can be mixed and matched. Research the climate and local customs to ensure you bring only what you truly need.

And if you know that you’re going to want to bring souvenirs home, be sure to leave room so you don’t have to pay extra on the trip home!

By packing smart, you'll have a hassle-free travel experience and potentially save on additional costs.

10) Embrace Local Experiences

Immerse yourself in the local culture and seek out free or low-cost activities.

Take advantage of public parks, gardens, and beaches. Visit museums and historical sites on discounted admission days or explore cultural events and festivals that offer a glimpse into the authentic essence of your destination. You can also check community calendars for local events and look into multi-attraction passes.

Trying out local experiences is not only budget-friendly but also allows you to connect with the heart and soul of the place you are visiting.

Ready to Book Your Affordable Vacation?

Making your dream vacation affordable is within your reach. With proper planning, flexibility, and a willingness to explore alternative options, you can create a memorable and budget-friendly travel experience.

I hope that this helps you enjoy a vacation you’ll remember forever.

And be sure to check out our free masterclass! We’ll show you how to take control of your finances and create financial freedom so you can travel to all of the breath-taking destinations your heart desires.

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