How (and Why) to Prepare for Summer Travel Now

Think it’s too early to start thinking about your plans for summer vacation? Think again! Now is the perfect time to start planning and preparing.

As we Tip Heroes know, planning ahead in most cases is the best way to save money. While most other people have spring on their minds, you can make summer plans that don’t destroy your budget. Here are some ideas and helpful tips for booking your summer vacation this year:

Book Your Trip Early

The time to book that summer vacation is now if you haven’t already done so. While many are just starting to wipe away the remnants (hopefully!) of winter, you can save money by being two steps ahead and thinking ahead to sumer. Here are some articles that can help you on your way to travel savings and early booking:

Booking early also gives you the freedom to be flexible, which will help you to get the lowest prices prices possible with both airfare and hotels. You can use a site like Kayak to compare the prices of different travel dates.

Stay With Family or Friends

If you plan ahead now, you can choose a vacation destination that’s close to where family members or friends live. This strategy clearly saves you hundreds on hotel costs, and there are other ways to show your appreciation for your host’s hospitality. Depending on where you both live, you could also plan to have a house swap so you can each enjoy some vacation time in each other’s areas.

In addition to staying in a home of someone that you’re familiar with, you’ll also be able to take advantage of the benefits of a home. A kitchen, perhaps multiple beds and more space, for starters, will help you to be more comfortable and save money during your stay.

Also, if you’re heading to a friend or family’s area, be sure to ask them to tell you a bit about their area. After all, since they live there, they’re likely to have the scoop on the best and cheapest restaurants, attractions and more in the area.

Learn About the Area

The more in advance you book your trip, the more time you’ll have to research and plan out what you’re going to do. You’ll have the time to search out the best deals (and find coupons and such) to help you do fun things for cheaper. You might even be able to find certain events going on during the time of your vacation if you do some research beforehand. Of course you probably won’t want to plan everything about your trip down to the smallest details (there’s got to be some room for spontaneity, of course!) but the more you plan, the more you’re likely to save and the fewer unpleasant surprises you’re likely to encounter.

Plan a Road Trip

If you can completely cut out airfare costs (and perhaps lodging costs) you may save a bundle and still have an enjoyable and memorable trip. Here are some articles we’ve featured to help you plan from road trips:

Or, consider alternate transportation methods:

Have you started to think about summer travel plans? What are some of the best ways that you prepare to not only have a great vacation, but of course save a bundle? Please share your ideas and thoughts in the comments section below. Thanks for being a Tip Hero!

Source: Single Parents, The Simple Dollar, US News