Top 10 tips to save money on holiday
We all use a holiday to treat ourselves to souvenirs, eating out more than usual, new clothes, etc while on holiday but some of us have a very strict budget, especially when you are away with children.
So, how do we still have an awesome holiday without spending a fortune?
1. Work out what you are going to be doing on the holiday and see if it's cheaper to book tickets in advance instead of buying them on the day. Some attractions give discounts if booked online so it is always worth checking out, especially if it a very popular attraction as you may be able to book a time slot or get fast track tickets which will also save you time by not having to stand in a queue.
2. Get a prepaid travel card in the currency of the country you are going to so that you can add to it in the lead up to your holiday. I have a travel card with Tui because their app is super easy to use and you can have multiple currencies at the same time. I have euros and dollars on there at the moment as I am saving up for 2 trips.
3. Take pay-days into consideration. If you get paid while you are in holiday, you can work out how much you have available from your pay to use as top-up money or have for emergencies only.
4. You don't need to eat out for every meal. You will save a lot of money by finding your nearest supermarket and buying food yourself. For example, paying £5 each day for breakfast over 7 days will come to £35 for one person or you can buy a £2 box of cereal and £2 on a 4 pint bottle of milk and you save yourself £31! That could be a ticket to a show, mini golf or ticket into an attraction. For lunches you could make your own sandwiches which could cost you £10 each a day as well or buy a £1 loaf of bread, £2 pack of ham, 55p cucumber and £2 pot of salad cream that that will save you £29.45 over a week compared to £70 to eat out. That's entry to 4 attractions in London on a Merlin Entertainment Pass. If you want to eat out, try to find all-you-can-eat places. They aren't normally too expensive and they will have something that everyone likes.
5. Look online for discount vouchers, cards and apps. If you know there is a restaurant that you want to try while on holiday, see if they have any offers on their website or Facebook page. Sometimes there are offers to get 10% off booking done through their Facebook page or 2-4-1 on main meals on Tuesdays so you can organise eating out with the offers available. Some restaurants even have apps that give you special offers if you sign up. voucher books are a big thing in some cities. Hotels have voucher books for local restaurants and attractions so it is worth picking those up as well as they will give you money off offers.
6. Check what the hotel offers as free services. My hotel in Orlando offered free shuttle services to Universal Studios which saved us $7 each way on taxi rides.
7. Have rest days, after all, you are on holiday. You don't need something to do every single day so if your hotel has a nice pool, take a day just to chill out, soak up the sun, read a book, sleep or have a swim. If you have already brought your own food, the only money you will spend all day would be for dinner.
8. Share toiletries. If there is more than just yourself on the trip and you will all be in the same room, see if everyone is ok using the same toiletries like shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and toothpaste so that you only need to buy one lot of everything instead of all spending out on the same thing multiple times. My husband and I do this when we go away as it just makes things easier.
9. Use public transport. Most big cities have great public transport and are very cheap compared to taking a taxis. In Kos, we could get a taxi from our hotel in Kardamena to Kos Town for 40 Euros or 16 Euros for a bus for the pair of us and the journey was only an extra 20 minutes. Some train providers in the UK also offer 2-4-1 tickets on attractions and also group-save tickets if there is more than 2 of you. It's also a good idea to look at open-bus tours as they can be cheap for weekend or week passes, they will take you to all the attractions, you can get on and get off as much as you like and they sometimes come with discounts to attractions.
10. Check out the local shops for bargains. When we went to Orlando, there were a lot of souvenir shops offering Orlando t-shirts from $1 each instead of $15 or $20 is the bigger shops. If you are going on holiday somewhere with big theme parks, you can also get official merchandise in the souvenir shops at a third of the price. I went to a Wal-Mart and found loads of Avengers merchandise including t-shirts really really cheap compared to buying it at the park.
OK, I hope those tips help you to have an amazing holiday an save a little bit of money :-)