This past year was a great one! We closed 2017 with a bang, part of which was due to an amazing family vacation.
We’re not millionaires, so we don’t spend like we are. This year we got to live a little above our means without needing to pay the extra cash. We got to save on vacation!
In the Fall, my parents asked us to go with them to Florida. I had visited multiple times before on family vacations, but this was different. My family utilized VRBO, which I now highly recommend.
What is VRBO?
Think of it as an option to Airbnb. It’s easy to use, and our experience was luxurious! You get to choose the location you want to stay, view the available properties and date options, and sometimes even have the opportunity to speak with the property owners/managers.
I know it isn’t necessarily ground-breaking, but we received very high-quality service while we were staying in Destin and my parents felt it was well worth their time and effort to choose a property they wanted to check out.
Keith and I had a lot of fun. It’s possible we felt like older people–enjoying Florida as the chilly weather arrived, but we also got some peace and quiet together in an environment that included white sands and beautiful blue waters! No complaints from this tiny peanut gallery.
Too Extravagant for You?
Vacations don’t have to be extravagant. Although we got to go to Florida, we did so at a time where flights weren’t exorbitantly priced and while we were there, we had the advantage of a kitchen where we could fix foods ourselves and store drinks we love. We didn’t have to go out for breakfast, coffee, or drinks. We could easily enjoy those at our temporary home and save going out as a special treat. This is a big deal if you’re visiting a city where items cost more for you than they would at home.
If you choose to fly, check out your available credit card benefits before you book your trip! Being able to make use of those rewards gave me another way to save. I utilized miles I had earned over the years to pay for part of my trip. I’m not a whiz at putting miles to great use yet, but I plan to get to an expert level with our next trip–wherever that may be. One thing I suggest is spreading out how you choose to use your miles. Some cards allow you to redeem for gift cards. Would gift cards be better for you to use to pay for items before or during your trip or is it better to use them to save on your travel or hotel accommodations? These are just a few things to consider on how best to save money before you hit that redeem button.
Your savings could be even higher if you drive! When you drive, you can bring more of your own activities and foods. Think about taking your own golf clubs instead of renting or your favorite foods and drinks you may already have at home. Yes, it is beneficial to do a mini cost analysis prior to deciding whether to drive or fly. Luckily, you know that there are benefits to both and you can save and enjoy your vacation either way!