Are you planning on taking a summer holiday this year?
Bankrate has noted that those who are planning to take a holiday this summer anticipated spending $2,819, on average — that’s right in line with my own planned summer holiday, which is currently projected to cost $3,223 including hotel stays, airfare and ground transportation, food, and souvenirs.
(In case you’re curious: I’m spending five days/six nights at Walt Disney World, I got a discount on the resort hotel, the airfare was covered by American Airlines Advantage miles, and I’m only planning to purchase one meal per day in the parks.)
If a $2K summer holiday isn’t an option this year — or any year — that doesn’t mean you have to forgo summer vacation altogether. This is Lifehacker, after all. We have plenty of tips and advice on how to have an enjoyable, and affordable, summer holiday.
Here are some of the highlights, organised by topic. Take a look, and then share your favourite low-cost vacation tips in the comments!
Over the past few years a good number of my vacations have turned into more of a “we’ll go one weekend” thing rather than a need to make a vacation fit into a particular time frame. That’s to say that rather than looking for flights for a specific weekend in October to make a trip, I might instead be open to going on the same trip any weekend in October or September.
If you have similar travel plans, then Travelgam can be a great solution when it comes to planning.
When it comes to taking vacations, we all have those bucket list destinations that we know we want to visit. That said, sometimes you also just need to get away for a long weekend and almost anywhere will do. Anywhere that isn’t going to break the bank, of course.
Thanks to the plummeting prices of long-haul plane tickets, travelling is easier and cheaper than ever before. That said, the second biggest expenditure when heading to a new place is, of course, a place to stay. Airbnb may have revolutionised the way we travel, with homey accommodations available at a fraction of the price of a hotel room, but those costs still add up.
Chances are good that the cost of your hotel room is going to drop after you book it. Hotels will often lower prices when bookings aren’t quite what they hoped for a day, or when it becomes obvious they’re going to have a ton of available space.
I’ve always been a fan of pre-travel planning, to the point that I build a packing grid before every trip. The packing grid includes outfit components for every day of travel (based on predicted weather and activity), as well as a list of essentials that I don’t want to leave behind: Advil, Band-Aids, my Fitbit charger and so on.
The allure of far-off destinations lies in doing the things and visiting the places that one cannot do or visit at home, so hanging out at grocery stores, 7-Elevens, and chemists may seem like a waste of your valuable, limited time. Let me assure you, fellow travellers, it is not.
I am not a parent, but as someone who has a hard enough time feeding and clothing myself, I have a lot of respect for humans who take care of other humans. When I see parents travelling with their kids, it looks like so much fun. But travel is stressful enough when you're alone — how do they pull it off with little ones?
Video: When riding in a car with little kids for an extended amount of time, you quickly learn three things.
If you're looking to use some holiday days, but you're not sure where you want to go, travel booking site Wander lets you search based on your overall travel budget.
Requesting time off
I know, you're busy and you have work to do, but you also need to take some time off to recharge those batteries. So, should you plan one big holiday for the year? Or should you sparse out your days for multiple holidays throughout? Quantity can sometimes beat quality.
Even if you've had a holiday filled with rest and relaxation, the trip coming home is often enough to wipe you out and get you disoriented. The next time you plan a holiday, give yourself an extra day to bounce back and get ready for your return to work.
So as the winter season looms before us, take solace in knowing that summer holiday at the end of the year is obtainable. Keep yourself warm with the thoughts of your adventure or relaxation retreat, as long as you start planning and saving from here on.