Summer vacation is what dreams are made of! Summer is usually the season everyone likes to travel. It’s the period hardworking Americans take their vacation. It’s the best time to finally make use of those vacation days you have been accumulating at work. But to travel during the summer you have to be smart and spend your money wisely. The goal is to get your money’s worth no matter where you choose to go. Last summer, my then boyfriend now fiancé traveled to Montreal, Canada for the International Jazz Festival. This trip opened my eyes to the beauty of budget and smart traveling. We didn’t plan any summer travel this year as we are now saving money for our upcoming wedding, all travels (which we plan to do a lot of) have been postponed till after the wedding. But looking back at that trip, I was proud of us for getting the best bang for our buck. I realized that I never shared some of my tips with you guys and have decided to do so today. I hope you can apply these simple tips on any travel you plan to make in the near future.
Travel smart during your summer vacation
First, decide how far the city you are visiting is from the city you live in. If the city is nearby, weigh your price options and choose the transportation means that won’t cut too deep into your budget. I will also suggest you explore cities near you before you embark on a more expensive and distant vacation. Living in New York City has opened my eyes to the fun and beauty of visiting neighborhood cities. Going back to our Montreal trip last year and considering the distance between Montreal and NYC, we had three different options and we chose the option that fitted our needs at that time. Montreal is just so close to NYC that using anything other than a bus didn’t make sense to us. We decided to use Greyhound bus, it was a lot cheaper than airline tickets and it was quick too. The midnight bus is always the best schedule option. You get to sleep throughout the ride and have extra hours to enjoy and explore the city the next day.
Stay cheap and live large
With the popularity of Airbnb and how affordable it is compared to staying in a hotel, where to stay should no longer be a source of headache while planing a summer vacation. Yes, there are some racist hosts from hell, but if you find a host that shares the same interests, ideologies etc as you then accommodation will even end up being the best part of your vacation. For our last year’s summer trip to Montreal, Airbnb was a whole lot cheaper than bed and breakfast and regular hotels. For our 4 nights stay, we paid only $234 and stayed in the nicest and liveliest part of Montreal that would have cost us so much money if we opted for a hotel.
Shop street vendors
If you want to create memories while on summer vacation and then bring them home with you I will suggest you visit the local street vendors and buy from them. You will find a lot of rare gems that will cost you more than double the price in regular stores. You will also be supporting local small businesses who contribute in making sure you have the best time in their city.
Instead of dinning out eat with the locals
How else are you going to enjoy authentic meal made with love and eaten among people who are more than happy to share their stories with you including stories behind the food you are eating? You will get the opportunity to meet new people and make friends who may even invite you over on your next visit. You should also enjoy the street foods. I always make sure to eat street foods when I’m visiting a new city. Or if you’re staying in an Airbnb cook your own food. Go to the nearest farmers market and shop local food items, come home and cook a nice meal that you will love and enjoy.
Everyone likes free stuff
Especially when you are trying to stretch your money while on your summer vacation. So, before you start dropping money on events and sightseeing like Nigerians at a Nigerian wedding make sure to check out the free stuffs first because chances are some of the fun things you plan on doing are for free.
Am I missing any tips you think you should be on the list? Please drop them in the comment section.