How to Save Money on Travel This Summer


With the summer holiday season upon us, we thought it would be helpful to provide some travel and holiday tips so you put your hard-earned money toward more meaningful and memorable experiences rather than general travel expenses.  Here are some tips that apply broadly to many types of travel, wherever you may be off to this year:


  • How to Save on Flights – There are entire books written on how to save money flying, but some simple tricks that seem to work for everyone include the following:

Book online instead of direct – This is what most people do now, but check out multiple flight comparison flights and then follow the further instructions below.

Click “Flexible Dates” on your search if your calendar has some flexibility.  By simply shifting your vacation up or back a single day, you greatly increase the available flight options and often save quite a bit of money.

Check Again – After getting your quote through a comparison site, then try contacting the airline directly for the same flight.  While they allot a certain number of tickets to be sold through websites, they hold some seats themselves. Commission may be included within the website prices whereas the airline may be able to give you the cheaper rate.

Get the Best Seat – This isn’t necessarily a money-saver, but it may well make your flight more comfortable and enjoyable.  The site tells you, which seat numbers have the best and worst attributes based on the plane layout.  All you have to do is enter the flight number and airline and they can tell you which seats to avoid when selecting!


  • How to Save During Your Stay – Don’t buy anything on your trip that you could buy and bring in advance.  Typical things that people forget to bring and end up paying for later include sunscreen, bug spray, umbrellas, raincoats and razors.  Don’t forget to pack them!
  • How to Save on Food – Food expenses are a large component of vacations, especially if you’re traveling to a tourist destination.  If you’re not flying, but rather taking an auto or train to your destination, you can save quite a bit of money by preparing your food in advance.  Even for cold food, a simple cooler can save quite a bit.  While it may be the last thing you want to focus on while trying to pack for your trip and depart, if you invest the time and effort up front, bringing your own food over paying to eat out can save a bundle.  Even if you’re flying, you can bring a lot of snacks and pre-packaged food if you don’t mind eating that way for perhaps breakfast and lunch and then only dining out for dinner.







Darwin is an engineer and MBA who takes an "evolutionary" approach to finance, writing about adapting to evolving financial management, tax, investing and savings opportunities. Making more money and saving more money is an adaptive process — join the evolution! He blogs at Darwin's Money and ETF Base

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