How to Travel on a Budget

The expenses that go into traveling tend to add up quickly. Many travelers don't include daily costs such as food and transportation. Having a plan and being prepared can allow you to save and travel more often. These six tips will show you how to travel on a budget.

1. Plan to Travel During the Off-Season

Off-season is the time of year tourist activity is slow, usually due to weather conditions. Tourist activity varies based on many different factors—such as holidays and school schedules. If traveling internationally, one country's peak travel time may be completely different than where you're from. Be sure to research off-season in the country you are visiting.

Traveling during the off-season can be very friendly on the wallet. Get great deals on airfare, lodging, food, and entertainment—all with smaller crowds.

Airfare can be the most expensive part of the trip. Finding a cheap flight allows you more spending money on your trip. The best time to purchase plane tickets is on Tuesdays, about 6-8 weeks in advance. The cheapest days to fly are Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.

2. Travel Light

Another tip for traveling on a budget is to avoid checked luggage fees. Depending on the airline, a checked bag costs about $30 - $50. Try your best to pack light—a carry-on and a personal item should suffice. Many people aren't aware of what items are allowed in your carry-on luggage, so be sure to check what you’re allowed to bring on the flight.

3. Earn While You Travel

If you are an avid traveler or like to treat yourself to a nice vacation from time to time, open a credit card with travel perks. These days, there are tons of options to earn free flights and hotels. This is an effective way to travel on a budget AND earn while you travel!

There is no perfect travel card. Browse and compare your options and choose a card that's best for your lifestyle. You can also earn miles when you join PreFlight’s Frequent Parker Program for American Airlines or United Airlines. Or save up your points for a free day of parking with us.

4. Use Public Transportation

Let's get into how to save money when you get to the destination. Transportation and food take up the majority of the expenses once you arrive.

Depending on where you travel, you will have various kinds of public transportation available to get around. This is a cheaper alternative to renting a car, plus you get a better cultural experience. Or, try to walk as much as possible. It's best to know what attractions/restaurants you want to go to so you can best plan your route and save time.

5. Don't Eat Out Every Meal

Just because you are on vacation doesn't mean you have to eat out every meal. This is the biggest mistake people make when trying to travel on a budget. Take a trip to the local grocery store at the beginning of your trip and plan out a few meals. If you are staying at a hotel, take advantage of the complimentary breakfast.

Depending on where you are traveling, there may be a farmer's market during your stay. If you are looking for unique ways to travel on a budget, this is a perfect activity for you. Shop around for souvenirs and grab some tasty food for the week!

6. Take Advantage of Airport Parking

There are endless tips and tricks to share for traveling on a budget. One cost of your trip that you might not incorporate into your budget, that can really put a damper on it, is transportation to and from the airport.

Using rideshares such as Uber, Lyft, or a taxi can be unreliable and expensive. You'll pay a base rate with rideshare plus a surge multiplier based on congestion, high demand, or bad weather—plus an extra fee if you need a larger vehicle. Also, having to worry about getting and finding a driver can be daunting.

So while traveling can be stressful, PreFlight can help make your travel experience seamless so you can enjoy the well-deserved trip ahead. Check out PreFlight Airport Parking next time you travel and save more toward your travel budget.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How soon will points be added to my account?

Points are added within 48 hours after you exit the facility.

How can I update my credit card?

Log in to your Frequent Parker account and select the Express Pass tab. The web page that opens gives you the option to edit your payment information. After entering the new information click save the changes.

I made a reservation, then signed up for the Frequent Parker card, can I add the reservation to my account?

Yes. Log in to your Frequent Parker account. On the Account Information page, please click Associate Reservation with My Account. The information on your reservation receipt is all you need.

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