travel http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/12026/all en-US Flashback Friday: 52 Things You Need to Know About Hosting on Airbnb http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-things-you-need-to-know-about-hosting-on-airbnb <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/flashback-friday-52-things-you-need-to-know-about-hosting-on-airbnb" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_thinking_question_mark_586948240.jpg" alt="Woman wondering if she should host on airbnb" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>So you're looking to make some extra cash, and you realize you have the perfect house or apartment to list on Airbnb. It seems like an easy way to earn money, and many people earn enough to cover their rent or mortgage payments. However, there are many things to consider before opening your home up to strangers as a potential side gig. Here's everything to keep in mind before taking that step.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/couple_backpack_vacation_516895030.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-easy-ways-to-make-good-money-from-airbnb?ref=fbf" target="_blank">5 Easy Ways to Make Good Money From Airbnb</a> &mdash; Think about the entire process from the customer's point of view. What would make your listing stand out among the rest? Taking professional photos, including personal touches in decor, and offering added services require minimal effort in exchange for big bucks.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-things-i-learned-from-renting-out-my-home-on-airbnb?ref=fbf" target="_blank">13 Things I Learned From Renting Out My Home on Airbnb</a> &mdash; Learn from the personal experiences of others. Sometimes the money is totally worth the nonstop cleaning and worrying about getting good reviews. Sometimes it isn't. Seek out honest reviews like this one to understand exactly what you'll face.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/woman_paris_travel_486971456.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cities-where-airbnb-is-way-cheaper-than-a-hotel?ref=fbf" target="_blank">5 Cities Where Airbnb Is Way Cheaper Than a Hotel</a> &mdash; Understand the market. What are hotels charging in your area? Do you have a second home to rent in a more desirable location where Airbnb might be the cheapest option? Local hotels are also your competitors, so research what they're offering before setting your price point.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay?ref=fbf" target="_blank">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a> &mdash; You can't please everyone, and you might run into some unhappy guests. Learn what their rights are compared to yours, and how negative feedback is handled.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/when_the_party_is_over.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-costly-pitfalls-of-hosting-on-airbnb?ref=fbf" target="_blank">5 Costly Pitfalls of Hosting on Airbnb</a> &mdash; As an Airbnb host, there are some costs that will come out of your wallet. Before you create your listing and start accepting guests, make sure your budget can accommodate those expenses.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-rent-your-place-on-airbnb-and-succeed?ref=fbf" target="_blank">This Is How You Rent Your Place on Airbnb &mdash; and Succeed</a> &mdash; Airbnb has been around for years, so there are many people who have learned the ins and outs of hosting, and now know how to do it right. This is one of them. Learn from their mistakes, and heed their expert advice.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/chrissa-hardy">Chrissa Hardy</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-things-you-need-to-know-about-hosting-on-airbnb">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-68-best-ways-to-make-money-that-are-actually-fun">Flashback Friday: 68 Best Ways to Make Money That Are Actually Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-bodily-fluids-you-can-exchange-for-cash">5 Bodily Fluids You Can Exchange for Cash</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/17-part-time-jobs-to-do-while-your-kids-are-at-school">17 Part-Time Jobs to Do While Your Kids Are at School</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-you-rent-your-place-on-airbnb-and-succeed">This Is How You Rent Your Place on Airbnb — and Succeed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-the-82-best-spring-cleaning-hacks-we-ve-ever-shared">Flashback Friday: The 82 Best Spring Cleaning Hacks We’ve Ever Shared</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Extra Income Home AirBnb extra income fbf flashback friday rent your home side hustle travel vacation rentals Fri, 15 Sep 2017 08:30:10 +0000 Chrissa Hardy 2021151 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Reasons Cash Back Is Better Than Travel Rewards http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-cash-back-is-better-than-travel-rewards <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-reasons-cash-back-is-better-than-travel-rewards" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_shopping_holding_credit_card_cash_dollar_bills.jpg" alt="Woman shopping holding credit card cash dollar bills" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When you apply for a rewards credit card, you usually have to choose between cash back and travel rewards. To help sway your decision, the companies that offer travel rewards credit cards often try to seduce you with images of exciting vacation destinations that you can supposedly use your rewards for. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-travel-rewards-credit-cards-really-work?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Travel Rewards Credit Cards Really Work</a>)</p> <p>For people who travel often, these rewards programs can be very valuable. Some expensive airfares, for instance, can be had for rewards rates that no cash-back card can compete with. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/comparing-miles-which-airline-loyalty-program-is-better?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Airlines Offer the Best Value for Their Miles?</a>)</p> <p>But most people don't travel enough to earn the points needed to score such deals. You may find the points and miles that these travel reward cards offer to be difficult, or sometimes impossible, to redeem for reservations you need. As a result, cash back credit cards are the better choice for many people. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-rewards-credit-cards-really-work?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Cash Rewards Credit Cards Really Work</a>)</p> <p>Here are six reasons that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash-back cards</a> could be a better choice than travel rewards.</p> <h2>1. Cash back offers consistent value</h2> <p>What's a point or mile worth with your favorite airline or hotel program? You may never know, as you could receive excellent value from your rewards one day, and very poor value at another time. But with cash back, you always know exactly what your rewards are worth (usually 1 cent per point or a certain percentage of your purchases).</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-that-offer-flat-rate-rewards-for-all-spending?ref=seealso2" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards that Offer Flat Rate Rewards for All Spending</a></p> <h2>2. Cash-back cards have gotten more competitive</h2> <p>It used to be that a strong cash-back card allowed you to earn 1 percent on most purchases, and perhaps 2 percent on a few bonus categories such as groceries or gas. But now, there are plenty of cards that offer as much as 5 or 6 percent bonus cash back on purchases from eligible merchants such as <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-gas-rewards-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">gas stations</a>, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-5-credit-cards-for-groceries?ref=internal" target="_blank">grocery stores</a>, and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-for-office-supply-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">office supply stores</a>. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-credit-card-issuers-classify-your-purchases-for-bonus-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Credit Card Issuers Classify Your Purchases for Bonus Points</a>)</p> <h2>3. Frequent traveler programs are less valuable</h2> <p>If you've tried to redeem your airline miles or hotel points recently, then you know how hard it can be to get substantial value from your rewards. For example, most airlines now charge a &quot;standard&quot; rate that requires at least double the miles of the traditional rates, often referred to now as the &quot;saver&quot; rates. Unfortunately, airlines have gotten stingy about the amount of award seats available at the saver rate. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-credit-cards-have-the-best-travel-redemption-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Credit Cards Have the Best Travel Redemption Value?</a>)</p> <p>Likewise, hotel programs may claim to make every standard room available as an award for points, but many independently owned properties have gotten around this by curtailing the number of rooms that are labeled &quot;standard.&quot; As a result, you may well be told that no rooms are available for your points, as the remaining ones have a superior &quot;city view&quot; or &quot;garden view.&quot;</p> <h2>4. Cash back is more flexible</h2> <p>Even when you can earn travel rewards that are equal in value to the cash back that you could have earned, you may find yourself wanting cash instead. By using a travel rewards card, you are limiting yourself to travel rewards, whether or not you actually want or need to travel. For example, if you have several thousand dollars' worth of travel rewards, you might regret not earning cash back if you decide not to travel next year due to illness, job loss, or just a busy work schedule.</p> <p>In short, you can always use your cash back to pay for travel reservations, but you can't pay your bills with frequent flyer miles. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-earn-cashback-rewards-without-extra-spending?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Ways to Earn Cash Back Without Spending Extra</a>)</p> <h2>5. Points and miles depreciate, while cash earns interest</h2> <p>As travel reward programs have become less valuable, your points and miles have fallen in value as a &quot;currency.&quot; And there's seemingly no end to this process. It's a fair bet to say you can expect the miles that you've already earned to fall in value each year. This is important as it can take some people years to save up enough travel points for a big trip. On the other hand, you can invest your cash back rewards and earn interest just as you would on your other savings.</p> <h2>6. Travel prices are falling</h2> <p>Flying is less expensive than it once was, thanks in part to low fuel prices and increased competition from ultra low-cost airlines. It's actually common to find sales offering domestic airfare for less than $100 each way. While that's great news for travelers, it also means that your frequent flyer miles are worth less than they were when flights were more expensive. In addition, home sharing services like Airbnb have reduced the cost of lodging for many travelers. This makes hotel stays less necessary and their rewards points less valuable.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-reasons-cash-back-is-better-than-travel-rewards&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Reasons%2520Cash%2520Back%2520Is%2520Better%2520Than%2520Travel%2520Rewards.jpg&amp;description=6%20Reasons%20Cash%20Back%20Is%20Better%20Than%20Travel%20Rewards"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Reasons%20Cash%20Back%20Is%20Better%20Than%20Travel%20Rewards.jpg" alt="6 Reasons Cash Back Is Better Than Travel Rewards" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-cash-back-is-better-than-travel-rewards">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-turn-credit-card-rewards-into-real-wealth">5 Ways to Turn Credit Card Rewards Into Real Wealth</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-you-should-never-do-with-your-travel-rewards-credit-cards">7 Things You Should Never Do With Your Travel Rewards Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips">How to Use Travel Rewards Cards to Get Free Trips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-credit-card-transactions-that-dont-earn-rewards">4 Credit Card Transactions That Don&#039;t Earn Rewards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-expert-tips-for-redeeming-miles-for-free-travel">12 Expert Tips for Redeeming Miles for Free Travel</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards best value cash back interest points rewards travel Tue, 12 Sep 2017 08:30:10 +0000 Jason Steele 2019383 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Places to Try the Airstream Lifestyle Before You Buy One http://www.wisebread.com/10-places-to-try-the-airstream-lifestyle-before-you-buy-one <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-places-to-try-the-airstream-lifestyle-before-you-buy-one" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/airstream_trailer_in_mojave_desert_at_sunset.jpg" alt="Airstream Trailer in Mojave Desert at Sunset" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Airstream trailers are enjoying an Instagram-era resurgence. Their shiny, curvy exteriors and tiny-home interiors are just so dreamy that more and more of us are indulging in Airstream getaways. But the cold-as-aluminum reality is that a new Airstream trailer can cost upwards of $100,000, which is not an amount most of us would lay down without knowing for sure whether sleeping in a bunk beneath a riveted ceiling would make us claustrophobic or euphoric.</p> <p>Fortunately, a growing number of Airstream parks, motels, and Airbnb rentals are allowing stream-dreamers to try before they buy. Most of these accommodations are more glamping than roughing it, so don't be surprised if prices are comparable to hotels. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-save-on-your-next-glamping-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Ways to Save on Your Next Glamping Trip</a>)</p> <h2>1. Kate's Lazy Desert Airstream Motel in Landers, California</h2> <p>Set in the ethereal Mojave High Desert outside Joshua Tree National Park, this motel features <a href="https://www.lazymeadow.com/" target="_blank">six vintage Airstream trailers</a> decorated by artists in themes such as Hot Lava (you feel like you're inside a lava lamp) and Tiki. But the real draw is that the park is influenced by the wacky style of the owner, Kate Pierson, of the B-52s. Bang, bang on the door, baby!</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $175 to $200 per night.</p> <h2>2. The Shady Dell Vintage Trailer Court in Bisbee, Arizona</h2> <p>Operating since 1927, this <a href="http://theshadydell.com/" target="_blank">resort along Highway 80</a> celebrates the retro kitsch of the Airstream lifestyle. Ten lovingly restored vintage trailers, including a 1955 Airstream, pair period decorations with modern comforts.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $85 to $95 per night.</p> <h2>3. Shooting Star RV Resort in Escalante, Utah</h2> <p>Imagine that you're hanging in John Wayne's trailer on set of John Ford's <em>The Searchers</em>. Well, you won't have to stretch your imagination far if you stay in <a href="http://www.shootingstar-rvresort.com/the-duke.html" target="_blank">The Duke</a>, just one of eight Hollywood-themed Airstreams at this glamping oasis in the wilderness.</p> <p>As if the trailers weren't enough of a Hollywood escape, after sunset you can watch a movie outside, <a href="http://www.shootingstar-rvresort.com/amenities.html" target="_blank">sitting in a classic car</a> just like a drive-in of yore.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $129 to $149 a night.</p> <h2>4. The Metro Hotel in Petaluma, California</h2> <p>This wine country <a href="http://www.metrolodging.com/" target="_blank">boutique hotel</a> features two Airstream trailers with brightly colored bedding and sleek modern interiors. One trailer is a 22-foot Bambi model; the other is a limited-edition 28-footer with a full kitchen and luxe bathroom. All guests get pastries and coffee in the morning, and The Metro offers a cafe and bike rentals for pedaling into historic downtown Petaluma.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $149 to $235 a night.</p> <h2>5. The Starlux Boutique Hotel in Wildwood, New Jersey</h2> <p>Set on the Jersey Shore, this hotel has <a href="http://hotels.moreyspiers.com/starlux" target="_blank">two doo-wop-inspired trailers</a> for you to stay in swanky style, each with a double bed, a day bed, private bathroom, kitchenette, and lava lamp. You also have access to the hotel pool, and the beach and boardwalk are steps away.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $81 to $211 a night.</p> <h2>6. Bar Harbor/Oceanside KOA in Maine</h2> <p>Sleep in a <a href="https://koa.com/campgrounds/bar-harbor-oceanside/site-type/cabin-accommodations/" target="_blank">modern 26-foot Airstream</a> equipped with a queen bed, a full bath with shower, and a Keurig coffee maker. This campground is on the same island as Acadia National Park. And a 10-minute drive gets you to the gorgeous coastline and freshwater lakes in the area.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $185 a night.</p> <h2>7. Caravan Outpost in Ojai, California</h2> <p>In the heart of the bohemian and artsy town of Ojai, <a href="http://caravanoutpost.com/" target="_blank">Caravan Outpost</a> consists of 11 &quot;curated&quot; Airstream trailers set in an urban garden. Outdoor movie nights and pop-up eateries add to the fun. Each trailer comes with complimentary bikes to explore the Ojai path.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $147 to $309 a night.</p> <h2>8. Wine Country Retreat in Temecula, California</h2> <p>Set in the heart of the Temecula wine country, <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/10070014" target="_blank">this Airbnb rental</a> features a pool, an on-site vineyard, and 40 wineries within minutes. You can also watch hot air balloons float from the deck.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $119 a night and up.</p> <h2>9. Malibu Dream Airstream in Malibu, California</h2> <p>Five hundred dollars might seem like a lot to sleep in a trailer, but how gorgeous is <a href="https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/3406062" target="_blank">this Airstream</a> perched on a bluff above a Malibu beach? Gorgeous enough that Vogue chose it as the backdrop for a photo shoot of bffs Taylor Swift and Karlie Kloss. And the entire ocean-facing side opens up for an endlessly gorgeous view.</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: $500 per night and up.</p> <h2>10. Airstream2go, various locations</h2> <p>But what if stationary wasn't the way you envisioned your Airstream adventure? After all, these babies were made to roll. This company will rent you one of their <a href="http://www.airstream2go.com/fleet/airstream-28-international" target="_blank">28-foot International Signature Series Airstreams</a>, laid out to sleep up to six, and a Chevy Tahoe to tow it with. They'll even plan an itinerary and program your GPS for you. Sample trips include driving through the Berkshires, exploring Coastal Maine, or rambling through the Southwest. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-of-the-craziest-coolest-airbnb-listings?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 of the Craziest, Coolest Airbnb Listings</a>)</p> <p><strong>Cost</strong>: Starts at $2,300 for three days and tops out at $17,500 for two weeks during peak season. Prices include the SUV to tow.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-places-to-try-the-airstream-lifestyle-before-you-buy-one">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taking-frugal-road-trips-even-when-gas-prices-are-high">Taking Frugal Road Trips (Even When Gas Prices Are High)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/flashback-friday-52-things-you-need-to-know-about-hosting-on-airbnb">Flashback Friday: 52 Things You Need to Know About Hosting on Airbnb</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-easy-affordable-ways-to-make-your-home-even-cozier-this-autumn">6 Easy, Affordable Ways to Make Your Home Even Cozier This Autumn</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cooking-for-beginners-10-recipes-for-kitchen-newbies">Cooking for Beginners: 10 Recipes for Kitchen Newbies</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-can-do-in-denver-that-you-cant-do-anywhere-else">8 Things You Can Do in Denver That You Can&#039;t Do Anywhere Else</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Home Lifestyle airstream airstream life camping road trip rv tiny house trailer travel Thu, 07 Sep 2017 08:31:04 +0000 Carrie Kirby 2016673 at http://www.wisebread.com 11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/young_woman_reading_a_book_at_beach.jpg" alt="Young woman reading a book at beach" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>By and large, an all-inclusive vacation is a sure bet for the price you're paying. The quality of what's included, of course, varies depending on where you're staying, so you should do your due diligence before booking. There are tactics, however, on how to make the most of your travel dollars and head home satisfied with a smile on your face. With these tips, your next all-inclusive resort vacay or cruise will be the best one yet. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-all-inclusive-vacations-and-cruises-worth-the-money?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Are All-Inclusive Vacations and Cruises Worth the Money?</a>)</p> <h2>1. Determine what &quot;all-inclusive&quot; really means at the resorts you're considering</h2> <p>&quot;All-inclusive&quot; is a relative term. Generally, it means that your food and nonalcoholic beverages are included for the length of your stay, but it's important that you determine all the perks before settling on a place to unwind and relax during your time off.</p> <p>Does your purchase include alcohol, activities and water sports, transfers, and resort fees? What about exit costs or tourist cards for immigration? What is the practicality of the pickup for your return departure, and what does that value mean to you?</p> <p>Shy Bredewold, owner of online travel agency Odyssean Travel, stresses the importance of getting to the nitty-gritty of what's included in your &quot;all-inclusive&quot; package. She proposes a hypothetical situation to help dissect the value.</p> <p>&quot;For example,&quot; she says, &quot;there's a free shuttle back to the airport, but it needs to be affordable, so they pick up at several hotels. You are given a time from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. for your return to the airport. Is it good value to check out early and waste your last morning, hung over in the lobby &mdash; or might you better spend $20 on a local taxi to take you at a time convenient to you?&quot;</p> <p>With the taxi option, you get to eat and drink at the hotel, use the pool or the beach, and enjoy two more hours of your life at the resort instead of taking turns getting drink refills in the lobby in case the coach arrives. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-you-need-to-know-before-you-book-an-all-inclusive-vacation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Things You Need to Know Before You Book an All-Inclusive Vacation</a>)</p> <h2>2. Consider the tiers of &quot;all-inclusive&quot; before making your purchase</h2> <p>Some resorts offer tier pricing for their all-inclusive options, which basically means you'll have access to more perks, the more you pay. You can mind your budget and opt for a lower tier, which may restrict you to a single resort, or you can upgrade, the provisions of which could grant you mobility to travel to nearby resorts and enjoy services in a different atmosphere.</p> <p>&quot;The Oasis branded resorts in Cancun, for example, have been known to allow guests to use some of the facilities at both sites along the Cancun resort strip.&quot; Bredewold explains. &quot;Get a little change of scenery, a new beach, different bar staff, or maybe even new drinking and dining options.&quot;</p> <p>Some resorts also are split into sections. If you're looking for the most options for dining and quiet bar spaces, consider taking the higher value wristband or resort access.</p> <p>Bredewold adds, &quot;A Melia resort in Cuba recently split into three tiers &mdash; the highest value (and cost) stay includes adults-only [areas] so you can escape the children of other people if you so desire.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-questions-to-ask-before-you-book-a-vacation-package?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Questions to Ask Before You Book a Vacation Package</a>)</p> <h2>3. Research the included entertainment</h2> <p>I'm somebody who likes to keep it moving during my vacations. I enjoy lounging on the beach briefly, but for the most part, I enjoy the games, entertainment, and activities the resort has to offer, especially if I've already paid for them. Of course, to make sure you get your money's worth, it's important to scout out these extras in advance to achieve maximum enjoyment. If water sports like snorkeling and paddle boarding are included but aren't appealing to you, are you sure you want to pay for them? Likewise, investigate the nightly entertainment options so you know what you're in for ahead of time, as well. You'll narrow down your choices quicker if you dissect the perks to match your personality.</p> <h2>4. Books tours as a group, if possible</h2> <p>While everyone in your party may not be on the same page as far as activities and excursions go, you should try what does appeal to most of you at the same time so you can qualify for group discounts where applicable. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-book-an-amazing-cheap-vacation-package?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Book an Amazing Cheap Vacation Package</a>)</p> <h2>5. Take advantage of the fitness class (you'll thank yourself later)</h2> <p>I once took an amazing all-inclusive vacation to the Montage Resort in Laguna Beach, California. It was the most luxurious getaway I've ever taken, and I just couldn't pass up the small-group fitness classes offered in the morning. These boot-camp style classes not only helped me start my day, but they also made me feel much better about stuffing my face throughout my four-day trip. Plus, the classes took place on the beach, with the waves of the Pacific Ocean crashing just a few feet away, and how often do I get to experience that? Other classes may be offered with your itinerary, like yoga, spin, or cardio, all of which are a great value (that you've already paid for) considering how much one-off classes cost regularly in real life.</p> <h2>6. Order room service</h2> <p>Room service is one of those luxuries that most of us forgo when we're on vacations. But when it's all-inclusive, go ahead and have dinner delivered straight to your door. I especially take advantage of late-night room service if I've been out all night having fun. PB&amp;J sandwiches, chips, and chocolate-chip cookies with milk are just what the doctor ordered. Or, ya know, go huge and get the steak and shrimp cocktail. Whatever floats your bloat.</p> <h2>7. Make dinner reservations at the specialty restaurants</h2> <p>Specialty restaurants at resorts and on cruises book up the fastest, so get your reservations in early so you don't miss out on the best cuisine the joint has to offer. You'll also be able to secure a decent seating time by planning ahead too, so you're not breaking bread an hour before bedtime.</p> <h2>8. Pack snacks from the buffet if you're going off campus</h2> <p>If you're headed out for a day trip that doesn't include lunch, pack your own at the buffet in the morning and take it with you. Choose items that will travel well and hold up without refrigeration for a few hours. Avoid mayo-based dishes if you know what's good for you.</p> <p>If you're splitting your vacation time at a pay-as-you-go <em>and</em> an all-inclusive resort, however, plan your off-campus trips for your non-all-inclusive days. For instance, I spent a week in Costa Rica on a Groupon Getaway a few years ago. The pay-as-you-go part of which was ripe for exploration and adventure, but when I got to the all-inclusive I put my feet up, ate nachos by the bucketful, and never set foot off campus.</p> <p>You'll only get the most for your money when you're using the services, eating the food, and participating in the activities while you're there. Enjoy it while you can.</p> <h2>9. Stay brand-loyal for the best discounts</h2> <p>Find a brand you like and stay loyal.</p> <p>&quot;If you can accept limited options, you may find that rewards points and other perks add up faster by booking with one brand or chain exclusively,&quot; says Bredewold. &quot;You may even be able to double up in some instances if the vacation package is administered by an airline but includes a stay at a branded hotel.&quot; (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-evaluate-a-travel-program-for-the-best-rewards-redemption?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Evaluate a Travel Program for the Best Rewards Redemption</a>)</p> <h2>10. Get the &quot;good stuff&quot; at the lobby bar</h2> <p>Some top shelf liquors are not at every bar, and the swim-up bar tends to have the smallest selection of premium brands, according to Tom Carr, CEO of PreferredVacations.com. Head to the lobby bar if you want quality hooch (and less of a hangover) since that's where they want to impress visitors with the best options. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-your-bartender-is-ripping-you-off?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways Your Bartender Is Ripping You Off</a>)</p> <h2>11. Look for &quot;Kids Stay Free&quot; offers</h2> <p>Some resorts offer deals like &quot;kids stay free.&quot; For instance, the <a href="https://www.dreamsresorts.com/en_us/home.html" target="_blank">Dreams Resorts &amp; Spas</a>, <a href="http://www.nowresorts.com/" target="_blank">Now Resorts &amp; Spas</a>, and <a href="http://www.sunscaperesorts.com/" target="_blank">Sunscape Resorts &amp; Spas</a> properties offer a Kids Stay Free deal that will save families a bundle. At these resorts in particular (program details will vary at other destinations that offer a &quot;kids stay free&quot; promotion), one kid stays free when staying in the same room as a paying adult. Food and activities also are included. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/family-friendly-hotel-and-resort-chains-where-kids-stay-free?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Family-Friendly Hotel and Resort Chains Where Kids Stay Free</a>)</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F11%2520Ways%2520to%2520Get%2520the%2520Most%2520Value%2520From%2520Your%2520All-Inclusive%2520Vacation.jpg&amp;description=11%20Ways%20to%20Get%20the%20Most%20Value%20From%20Your%20All-Inclusive%20Vacation"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/11%20Ways%20to%20Get%20the%20Most%20Value%20From%20Your%20All-Inclusive%20Vacation.jpg" alt="11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation" width="250" height="374" /></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-affordable-destinations-for-people-who-love-to-fish">8 Affordable Destinations for People Who Love to Fish</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget">How to Have a Fun Family Road Trip Without Breaking Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway">How to Make Sure You&#039;re Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-can-do-in-denver-that-you-cant-do-anywhere-else">8 Things You Can Do in Denver That You Can&#039;t Do Anywhere Else</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/taking-frugal-road-trips-even-when-gas-prices-are-high">Taking Frugal Road Trips (Even When Gas Prices Are High)</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Travel all-inclusive package all-inclusive vacation resort saving money travel travel tips vacation tips Thu, 31 Aug 2017 08:30:06 +0000 Mikey Rox 2012511 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Times Splurging on Experiences Is a Bad Idea http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-splurging-on-experiences-is-a-bad-idea <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-times-splurging-on-experiences-is-a-bad-idea" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_having_a_duh_moment.jpg" alt="Man having a duh moment" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you're a regular reader of Wise Bread, you know that we encourage you to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-reasons-you-should-splurge-on-experiences-not-things?ref=internal" target="_blank">spend your money on experiences</a> rather than material things. You will be happier if you make great memories, rather than stockpiling great electronics, clothes, shoes, watches, and jewelry. But there are two sides to every story. And sometimes, these experiences are just not worth the splurge.</p> <h2>1. Exotic destination weddings</h2> <p>We've all received those wedding invitations that, at first, seem like a dream come true. We picture ourselves tanning on a beach in Hawaii or Jamaica with a cocktail and a smile. But that's usually not the case. Destination weddings don't give you a lot of time to yourself. You are there for the bride and groom. It's their big day, they've spent a lot of money on it. You'll be expected to go to rehearsals, receptions, and other parties. You may well have to hang out with a bunch of people you don't know or even like all that much. And to top it all off, you're paying through the nose to go on this trip. It will likely cost thousands. You might make some good memories from it, but this isn't the same as a vacation on your own terms. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-resist-a-splurge?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways to Resist a Splurge</a>)</p> <h2>2. Tickets to the Super Bowl</h2> <p>Blasphemy, right?! Well, not really. When it comes down to it, a trip to the Super Bowl is a great experience if you can get it for the right price. But if you're buying the tickets through the secondary market, or even worse, getting an &quot;On Location Experience,&quot; you are going to be spending a small fortune. SeatGeek.com states that the <a href="https://seatgeek.com/events/super-bowl" target="_blank">average price of a Super Bowl 52 ticket</a> will be between $2,500 and $3,000. For those On Location Experiences, you're looking at between $6,000 to $12,000. Up to $12,000 to see a football game. Now, think about the experience you're going to have for that money. You're there, in the stadium, but most of the time you're actually watching the action on the big screen projection. You're paying an arm and a leg for food and drinks. You also had to pay to get to the Super Bowl and stay in a hotel, unless you're lucky enough to live in that city. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-one-man-used-credit-card-rewards-to-go-to-the-last-11-super-bowls?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How One Man Used Credit Card Rewards to Go to the Last 11 Super Bowls</a>)</p> <p>What else could you do with that money? How about two weeks in Europe? Or Japan? Or paying down debt? Wouldn't that be a better use of your money? Forget the Super Bowl experience, and watch it on a big screen at home with your friends and family.</p> <h2>3. Extremely high-priced restaurants</h2> <p>There are some restaurant experiences that balance good food with a reasonable check at the end of the meal. And there are others that just blow the budget completely out of the water. You may be thinking that once, just once, you want to spend a whole lot of money on an amazing meal &hellip; just to experience it. Well, honestly, you will not be getting your money's worth. For example, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-of-the-worlds-most-expensive-restaurants" target="_blank">Sublimotion in Spain</a> charges over $2,000 per person for a series of 15-20 small courses. It gets exceptional reviews of course, but $2,000 for a meal is just an absurd waste of your cash, and you will find stunning food in your area for way, way less money. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-worlds-most-affordable-michelin-starred-restaurants?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The World's Most Affordable Michelin-Starred Restaurants</a>)</p> <h2>4. A trip on the Orient Express</h2> <p>I mean, it's a train. It may be the most famous train the world, but is it worth the cost to ride? If you were to book a <a href="https://www.luxury-trains.co.uk/orient-express/venice-simplon-orient-express-train-fares.htm" target="_blank">cabin suite from Paris to Istanbul</a>, the cost is almost $16,000! If you instead opt for a double or single room, it's still up there at around $8,000! And what do you get for that? Honestly, not all that much. Some nice food, some fancy service, and nice views.</p> <p>However, if you purchase a First Class InterRail ticket for the same journey, with the same views, you will only be out of pocket around $400 per person. Don't bother with the Orient Express. It's overpriced and underwhelming, and includes a lot of wood paneling and polished brass.</p> <h2>5. The big fight</h2> <p>Despite the phenomenal rise in popularity of UFC, world-class boxing matches still command massive audiences. And it seems massively inflated ticket prices, too. In 2015, Forbes reported that the Floyd Mayweather Jr. versus Manny Pacquiao fight had ticket prices so incredible they broke records. As hard as it is to believe, some tickets went on sale for upward of $350,000! That's right, over a quarter of a million dollars, for a fight that many thought did not come close to living up to the title of &quot;Fight of the Century.&quot; If you're thinking, <em>Well, yeah, but most tickets didn't cost anywhere near that price,</em> then you're right. The worst seats in the house were being sold for over $3,500 per ticket. And that would have gotten you on the upper level with a view that left a lot to be desired. People were spending upward of $150 to attend the weigh-in for that fight! And these fights will continue to garner a lot of attention, and ask for grossly-inflated sums of money. Watch it on Pay-Per-View if you really want to see it, and split the cost with your friends.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-times-splurging-on-experiences-is-a-bad-idea&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Times%2520Splurging%2520on%2520Experiences%2520Is%2520a%2520Bad%2520Idea.jpg&amp;description=5%20Times%20Splurging%20on%20Experiences%20Is%20a%20Bad%20Idea"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Times%20Splurging%20on%20Experiences%20Is%20a%20Bad%20Idea.jpg" alt="5 Times Splurging on Experiences Is a Bad Idea" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-times-splurging-on-experiences-is-a-bad-idea">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-budgeting-skills-everyone-should-master">11 Budgeting Skills Everyone Should Master</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-out-of-social-obligations-that-break-your-budget">How to Get Out of Social Obligations That Break Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-ways-to-save-and-make-money-while-traveling">12 Ways to Save and Make Money While Traveling</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-books-that-will-get-your-kids-excited-about-money">10 Fun Books That Will Get Your Kids Excited About Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Entertainment expensive things experiences material things saving money spending splurges travel vacation weddings Thu, 27 Jul 2017 09:00:04 +0000 Paul Michael 1990724 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Have a Fun Family Road Trip Without Breaking Your Budget http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/family_s_road_trip.jpg" alt="Family&#039;s road trip" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>You've got your budget-friendly destination. You found the best hotel rate. You've got activities and meals in mind that won't eat up your savings. But what about the expense of the actual travel? From snacks to fuel to entertainment to handling the unexpected, these tips will help you keep costs low while you're on the road.</p> <h2>Be strategic with fuel</h2> <p>There's not much you can do to control the cost of fuel, but you can make sure your vehicle is <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-smart-ways-to-boost-your-gas-mileage?ref=internal" target="_blank">as fuel-efficient as possible</a>. The best way to do that is to keep your car well maintained. Keep up with regular oil changes and tire alignment, and your car will run cleaner, cooler, and have less drag.</p> <p>Also, don't wait until your tank is on empty and you're forced to use the nearest gas station. Instead, use a service like <a href="http://www.gasbuddy.com" target="_blank">GasBuddy</a> to find nearby gas stations with the best fuel prices. Plan your stops accordingly; if you're traveling with young kids, chances are one of them will need to use the restroom, anyway. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-for-road-trips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards for Road Trips</a>)</p> <h2>Pack snacks and beverages</h2> <p>The most cost-efficient way to have plenty of snacks on a road trip is to bring your own. You can't be sure what fast food joint or gas station offers will be available. And how much beef jerky can you eat before you start to regret it? Buy or make your family's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-easy-to-make-grab-and-go-snacks?ref=internal" target="_blank">favorite snack foods</a> in bulk before you leave, then package into single servings. Choose snacks that make the least possible mess. It's much easier to vacuum up crumbs than it is to clean gummy, sticky stains from car upholstery.</p> <p>Water is the best beverage for road trips. Take a cooler with ice and a couple of one-gallon jugs filled with fresh water. Refill individual bottles as needed. Juice, tea, or soda will lead to endless needs for bathroom breaks. Coffee, of course, fuels many drivers, as well. I prefer to start the journey with my own home-brewed coffee in my travel mug. You can also pick up coffee to go from any restaurant or gas station for very little. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-15-road-trip-snacks-make-it-all-about-the-journey?ref=seealso" target="_blank">These 15 Road Trip Snacks Make It All About the Journey</a>)</p> <h2>Bring on-the-go entertainment</h2> <p>The biggest challenge for road trips with children is keeping them entertained. As with food, bringing your own entertainment options from home saves time and money.</p> <p>You don't need special items for road trip entertainment; you just need portable options. Mess-free art materials are great: colored pencils, washable markers, and sketchbooks. Download a selection of audiobooks before you go; <a href="https://librivox.org/" target="_blank">Librivox</a> offers hundreds for free. Update your music playlists, and download movies for them to watch on tablets you bring along. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-things-you-must-do-if-youre-traveling-with-kids?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Things You Must Do If You're Traveling With Kids</a>)</p> <h2>Travel based on time of day</h2> <p>The best time of day to travel depends on time of the year, personal preference, destination, and the length of the trip. Many parents of young children find it easier to travel at night, when the kids will sleep for most of the way. That's a great option if the driver can stay awake.</p> <p>During the summer, driving at night can also keep the temperature lower, meaning less stress on the engine and better fuel efficiency. The calculable savings is minimal, so compare it to the increased coffee you'll require to drive all night before you make a decision.</p> <p>The other factor to consider is traffic. If your timing will have you entering a major city at rush hour, change it. Leave earlier, leave later, or plan an extended rest stop along the way. Sitting in traffic is uncomfortable and stressful, and the stop-and-go movement is hard on your car and fuel efficiency.</p> <h2>Prep for travel emergencies</h2> <p>Take <a href="http://amzn.to/2sdUPDD" target="_blank">baby wipes</a>. I cannot stress enough how handy, no, <em>how essential</em> a pack of baby wipes is in any car. Don't have a baby? Doesn't matter. Baby wipes will save the day in so many ways.</p> <p>Coffee spill? Baby wipe. Messy face? Baby wipe. No napkins from the takeout place? Baby wipes. Smelling a little less-than-fresh after eight hours on the road? Baby wipes.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-first-aid-kits" target="_blank">first aid kit</a> is essential, too. Buy a pre-packed one, or <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-items-you-might-have-forgot-in-your-emergency-kit?ref=internal" target="_blank">make your own</a> and keep it in the car. You can include the essential items you know you'll use the most, as well as any specialized care items you might need.</p> <p>The other item that can save you from excess stress and cost is a car emergency kit. You should have the supplies to change a tire as well as a spare tire, flares, and jumper cables. It's helpful to have a <a href="http://amzn.to/2tj2cd0" target="_blank">flashlight</a> and basic tools on hand, as well. I've found it's also helpful to have someone who's adept at changing tires. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-jump-starter-kits?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Jump Starter Kits</a>)</p> <p>Regardless of your skill level, though, preparation can save you in many ways. When you're prepared with snacks, entertainment, and emergency supplies you'll spend less and be more relaxed. That makes for a much better road trip.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Have%2520a%2520Fun%2520Family%2520Road%2520Trip%2520Without%2520Breaking%2520Your%2520Budget.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Have%20a%20Fun%20Family%20Road%20Trip%20Without%20Breaking%20Your%20Budget"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Have%20a%20Fun%20Family%20Road%20Trip%20Without%20Breaking%20Your%20Budget.jpg" alt="How to Have a Fun Family Road Trip Without Breaking Your Budget" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/annie-mueller">Annie Mueller</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-family-getaways-when-you-dont-have-a-vacation-fund">7 Affordable Family Getaways When You Don&#039;t Have a Vacation Fund</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-cheap-ways-to-entertain-your-kids-this-summer">6 Cheap Ways to Entertain Your Kids This Summer</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Travel family vacation frugal travel road trip saving money summer vacation travel vacation tips Thu, 29 Jun 2017 09:00:10 +0000 Annie Mueller 1974320 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Make Sure You're Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/mid_adult_couple_shopping_using_laptop_and_credit_card.jpg" alt="Mid adult couple shopping using laptop and credit card" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've ever explored different ways to save on travel, you've probably stumbled on <a href="http://tracking.groupon.com/r?tsToken=US_AFF_0_201409_1663122_0&amp;url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.groupon.com%2Foccasion%2Fhot-travel-deals%3Fz%3Dskip%26utm_medium%3Dafl%26utm_campaign%3D201409%26mediaId%3D1663122%26utm_source%3DGPN" target="_blank">Groupon Getaways</a>. Like traditional Groupon deals, Groupon Getaways promise huge discounts on hotels and hotel-and-airfare packages if purchased within a limited time frame.&nbsp;(See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-6-best-vacation-deal-websites?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Best Vacation Deal Websites</a>)</p> <p>It's easy to see their allure. Groupon Travel recently advertised a one-week&nbsp;Italy vacation with airfare for $999&nbsp;per person. It featured round-trip flights to Naples from major cities like Chicago and New York, and six or seven nights at a hotel in the ancient town of Paestum, south of Naples.</p> <p>That sounds like a good deal, but is it? Let's explore this Groupon travel package and others to find out.</p> <h2>Deconstructing a Groupon&nbsp;Getaway</h2> <p>Before we can decide if this is a good deal, it helps to know what exactly was included. Here's what the Groupon travel website offered with the package.</p> <h3>Flights and transportation</h3> <ul> <li> <p>Round-trip airfare from New York (JFK), Boston (BOS), or Chicago (ORD)</p> </li> <li> <p>Manual shift economy car rental for duration of trip</p> </li> </ul> <h3>Hotel</h3> <ul> <li> <p>A stay of six or seven nights at&nbsp;Hotel Ariston in Paestum</p> </li> </ul> <p>For $99 extra per person, you could also score free breakfast at your hotel daily, along with a Bufala cheese tasting.</p> <p>Read further and you'd see this package came from a company called&nbsp;Great Value Vacations. And while your vacation isn't guided, the company went through the trouble of creating a sample itinerary with suggestions of cities and sights to see &mdash; stops in Rome to see Piazza Navona and Trevi Fountain, for example, along with tips on seeing the buried city of Pompeii and the unparalleled beauty of Capri and Anacapri. Of course, you'd have to pay out of pocket to see all those sights, just as you would if you'd booked your airfare and hotel yourself.</p> <p>In the ad's fine print it said that the Groupon was limited to one per person, yet the price was based on two people sharing a room and there was a $500 fee to travel solo.</p> <p>Another detail to note: The fine print said that &quot;additional fees apply to select departure dates.&quot; And while there were a ton of departure dates available, they weren't flexible at all. Worse, only two of the departure dates and cities offered came with the advertised price tag of $999. To fly out of Chicago in July, for example, costs $1,724 per person instead of $999. Out of New York in September on select dates? That would set you back $1,249.</p> <p>So much for that.</p> <p>Out of curiosity, I checked for a similar trip on Expedia using random dates this summer and fall. While I didn't find any hotel packages that included a stay in Paestum, here's what I did find: Airfare, hotel, and rental car packages from Chicago to Naples started at $759 for a week in September. Similar packages from Boston to Rome in October started at about $525.</p> <p>Plugging in a bunch of different dates and cities, I found dozens of similar packages for less than $1,000 &mdash; and sometimes a lot less. Best of all, these packages allow you to pick your dates and your hotel instead of locking you in.</p> <p>So, while $999 per person for a week in Italy with a hotel and rental car seemed like a good deal, it may not be that great after all. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-save-money-on-holiday-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways to Save Money on Travel</a>)</p> <h2>How to evaluate Groupon Getaways</h2> <p>The Italy package is just one example of a sour &quot;deal,&quot; but there are many, many more. There are also plenty of travel packages that <em>are</em> a good deal.</p> <p>For example, Groupon Getaways recently offered a $599 all-inclusive trip to Negril, Jamaica from certain cities. If you departed from Atlanta on June 1, you would have paid $599 for round-trip airfare and an all-inclusive stay at the Riu Negril.</p> <p>I checked outside of Groupon, and similar flights started at $570 per person on discount airline Spirit. That was for the flight alone. It would cost another $200 a night to stay at the all-inclusive Hotel Riu Negril. Obviously, this was an awesome deal if you lived near Atlanta or could get there cheaply. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-easy-way-to-save-up-a-big-travel-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Save Up a Big Travel Budget</a>)</p> <p>So, how can you sort the good deals from the bad? Consider these tips.</p> <h3>1. Price out Groupon packages to see how much you'll save</h3> <p>The best way to save money with Groupon Getaways is to price out each trip and its components individually. With the Italy itinerary mentioned above, there were scads more affordable options with a lot more flexibility. But, you may not have known that if you didn't do some digging to see how much everything costs.</p> <p>The same can be true when you <em>are </em>getting a good deal. As with the Riu Negril package mentioned above, pricing the components out individually can accurately depict your savings. But you won't know how much you'll save if you never check.</p> <h3>2. Avoid packages with excessive fine print or blackout dates</h3> <p>The big problem with Groupon Getaways is all the fine print. Some only offer the packages on certain dates and from certain airports. Others have so many exclusions it's hard to keep track, or they add a surcharge if you travel alone. Make sure to read all the details so you know what you're getting into.</p> <h3>3. Factor in the costs of getting to a specific airport</h3> <p>If you're considering a Groupon Getaway that includes airfare, make sure to add in the costs of getting to a big city airport. Most of the packages only offer departures from major airline hubs like New York, Chicago, Boston, and Los Angeles. If you live in Boise, Idaho, you'll need to get to one of those airports first. Unfortunately, that costs money, too.</p> <h3>4. Just because&nbsp;it's &quot;on sale&quot; doesn't mean it's a good deal</h3> <p>While this last tip is broader, it's probably the most important. Just because something says it's a deal doesn't mean it will save you money. The Italy vacation referenced above said it had a $1,599 retail value and saved you 38 percent, but it likely wouldn't have. At the end of the day, it's important to do your research and decide for yourself. A little bit of digging can ensure any decision you make is an informed one.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Make%2520Sure%2520Youre%2520Getting%2520a%2520Deal%2520With%2520Groupon%2520Getaway.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Make%20Sure%20Youre%20Getting%20a%20Deal%20With%20Groupon%20Getaway"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Make%20Sure%20Youre%20Getting%20a%20Deal%20With%20Groupon%20Getaway.jpg" alt="How to Make Sure You're Getting a Deal With Groupon Getaway" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-make-sure-youre-getting-a-deal-with-groupon-getaway">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-about-a-terrible-airbnb-stay">What to Do About a Terrible Airbnb Stay</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-useful-items-hotels-usually-provide-for-free">14 Useful Items Hotels Usually Provide for Free</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-spring-break-budget-busters-to-avoid">11 Spring Break Budget Busters to Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel flight deals groupon groupon getaway hotels travel travel tips vacation vacation tips Mon, 26 Jun 2017 08:30:18 +0000 Holly Johnson 1971632 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Ways Using Credit Can Help You Enjoy a Cheaper, Safer Summer Vacation http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/family_summer_vacation_496796385.jpg" alt="Family using credit for a cheaper, safer summer vacation" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Summer travel season has arrived! Whether you&rsquo;re going to the beach, the lake, the mountains, or &ldquo;The Happiest Place on Earth&rdquo; (at least from the kids&rsquo; perspective), summer vacation can be expensive. It also can put you at risk for theft &mdash; both of your personal belongings and your identity.</p> <p>According to Experian, the average per-person cost of a vacation is $2,275, and half of this expense is put on a credit card. Planning ahead, setting a budget, and saving money in advance are essential for a debt-free vacation. Even after putting in the time and effort to start a vacation fund at the bank, using credit can be a smart financial choice. Here are seven ways using credit as a financial tool during your summer travel can help you have a safer, less-expensive vacation without taking on debt.</p> <h2>1. Convenience</h2> <p>Figuring out foreign currency can be like Harry Potter counting Muggle money. Using a credit card can eliminate uncomfortable stares from the locals, who you know are thinking, <em>Yup, they&rsquo;re tourists,</em> while you and yours hold up the line deciding whether the gold coin with the lady on it or the silver coin with the man is the right change. A credit card can also automate the calculation of exchange rates. Look for cards that don&rsquo;t charge a foreign transaction fee. Finally, credit cards hold up much better than cash when you drop your wallet in the pool.</p> <h2>2. Travel insurance</h2> <p>Some credit card agreements provide travel insurance when you book flights or hotels. You&rsquo;ll be glad you didn&rsquo;t reserve those nonrefundable tickets with cash when the hurricane blows through two weeks before departure and takes your hotel with it.</p> <h2>3. Purchase discounts</h2> <p>Branded credit cards may offer discounts for purchases on the resort property or in stores and restaurants in the area. The right logo or cute cartoon character on the card can leave you with a little extra cash in the bank back home.</p> <h2>4. Rewards and incentives</h2> <p>Airline miles, hotel points, and cash back can add up quickly on a cross-country road trip or overseas vacation. Using a credit card could put a bit of money back in your savings account, get you a free room for a night, or earn a seat upgrade on a long overnight flight.</p> <h2>5. Identity theft protection</h2> <p>Your identity may be your most valuable possession. Using a credit card for vacation purchases will protect you when your identity is compromised. Because losses due to fraud are limited to $50, if your identity is stolen while on the road, you won&rsquo;t lose any cash. In most cases, even the $50 is waived by the credit card company.</p> <h2>6. Theft deterrence</h2> <p>Want to put a bullseye on your back? Pull out a big wad of cash in a crowded vacation spot. Flashing loads of lucre can make you a prime target for thieves and pickpockets. Eliminate bulging pockets and use a credit card instead of cash. If you do have your pocket picked, simply call the credit card company to have the account blocked and a replacement card delivered to you.</p> <h2>7. Expense tracking</h2> <p>Using a single credit card for all your vacation purchases can be a good financial management tool. Designating a single card will give you a complete record of your expenses when you get home &mdash; in the form of your monthly statement.</p> <p>You might also consider applying for a new card expressly for your summer vacation. That makes expense tracking even easier &mdash; any spending on the card is automatically &quot;vacation spending.&quot; If you choose your vacation card carefully, you may be able to boost your rewards and savings, too. Before applying, check your Experian credit report and <a href="http://www.experian.com/blogs/ask-experian/credit-education/score-basics/" target="_blank">score</a>. Knowing what&rsquo;s in the report will ensure there aren&rsquo;t any surprises when you apply.</p> <p>Of course, you can&rsquo;t just charge it and forget it. You still have to monitor your spending along the way, stick to your budget, and use your vacation savings to pay the balance in full when you get home. But if you use credit wisely, you may be able to leave a bit in the account to use next year.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Ways%2520Using%2520Credit%2520Can%2520Help%2520You%2520Enjoy%2520a%2520Cheaper%252C%2520Safer%2520Summer%2520Vacation.jpg&amp;description=7%20Ways%20Using%20Credit%20Can%20Help%20You%20Enjoy%20a%20Cheaper%2C%20Safer%20Summer%20Vacation"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Ways%20Using%20Credit%20Can%20Help%20You%20Enjoy%20a%20Cheaper%2C%20Safer%20Summer%20Vacation.jpg" alt="7 Ways Using Credit Can Help You Enjoy a Cheaper, Safer Summer Vacation" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rod-griffin">Rod Griffin</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget">How to Have a Fun Family Road Trip Without Breaking Your Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations">6 Budget-Friendly Beach Destinations</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-frugal-fall-getaways-you-can-start-packing-for-now">10 Frugal Fall Getaways You Can Start Packing For Now</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-things-you-can-do-now-to-prep-for-your-best-summer-ever">14 Things You Can Do Now to Prep for Your Best Summer Ever</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel budget travel cheap travel saving money summer travel summer vacation travel Tue, 20 Jun 2017 09:00:11 +0000 Rod Griffin 1969124 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/girl_laughing_on_the_trolltunga.jpg" alt="Girl laughing on the Trolltunga" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you love the great outdoors, you don't want to look back on this brief, beautiful summer as a time spent inside crowded movie theaters or waiting in long lines at amusement parks. But maybe this isn't the year that you can afford to take that naturalist-guided Galapagos Islands excursion, either.</p> <p>No worries! There are many affordable places stateside where you can get off the grid without spending extravagantly. Some of these destinations have cushy lodging available, if that's your jam, but you also have the option to rough-it on a more modest budget.</p> <h2>1. California's Sierra country, other than Tahoe</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/kings_river_in_sequoia_national_park_california.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you visit Lake Tahoe in the summer, you'll love the crystalline waters, but hate the traffic and the brunch prices. Smart Californians know that you can enjoy the Sierra's fresh, piney breezes more affordably (and peacefully) from the shores of any number of less famous alpine lakes.</p> <p>Stay at the <a href="https://www.mslodge.com/" target="_blank">Montecito Sequoia Lodge &amp; Family Camp</a>, where a room that sleeps four or more is under $300 a night including meals and activities such as guided hikes through giant sequoias, bouldering, and stand-up paddleboarding in their private lake.</p> <h2>2. Kodachrome State Park, Utah</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/kodachrome_storm.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>Many a dreamed-of National Park vacation has been spoiled by the reality that lodging books up really, really early. A great workaround &mdash; and often a money saver &mdash; is checking out state and county parks in the same region.</p> <p>Located just outside Bryce Canyon National Park (one of Utah's Big Five) much-smaller Kodachrome gets its name from its 67 flashily-pigmented stone spires. You can <a href="https://stateparks.utah.gov/parks/kodachrome-basin/park-campground/" target="_blank">camp in the park ($17-$30 per night)</a> and take a trail ride through the red canyon past the gaudy spires, then take day trips into neighboring Bryce, famous for its hoodoo rock formations, and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, known for the series of colorful plateaus, and the Wave, an undulating expanse of pulled-taffy-like sandstone that you have to win a daily lottery to hike.</p> <h2>3. Anchorage, Alaska</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/anchorage.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>The largest city in the state for a nature lover's getaway? Well, yes, when the state is Alaska and that largest metropolis has just over 300,000 people. Right in town, 1,400-acre Kincaid Park is home to moose, porcupines, lynx, and eagles. Chugach State Park, one of the largest in the United States, begins just seven miles from downtown, and contains mountains, ferns, wildflowers, forests, ptarmigan, and brown and black bears.</p> <p>Modestly-priced hotels in Anchorage include the $140-a-night <a href="https://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g31000-d10662666-Reviews-Ski_Inn-Girdwood_Anchorage_Alaska.html" target="_blank">Ski Inn</a>. Anchorage is pretty far from the rest of the United States, but getting there need not be a bank-breaker. Alaska Airlines offers flights from San Francisco and other lower-48 cities for under $400 round-trip, depending on dates.</p> <h2>4. Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida</h2> <h2><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/dry_tortugas_island.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></h2> <p>Would you like to camp under a palm tree on a white sand beach, under a star-studded sky 70 miles from the mainland? What if I told you it only <a href="https://www.nps.gov/drto/planyourvisit/campgrounds.htm" target="_blank">costs $15 a night</a>? It really does, at one of the most isolated national parks in the lower 48.</p> <p>Activities include snorkeling coral reefs among young barracuda, lobsters, and tropical fish; birding; and watching for the adorable sea turtles that give the park its name.</p> <p>The campground fee isn't the only expense of a Dry Tortuga getaway. The ferry from the mainland will set you back <a href="https://www.drytortugas.com/rates-reservations/" target="_blank">$195 round-trip</a> &mdash; but it includes breakfast, lunch, and the use of snorkeling equipment.</p> <h2>5. Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, Michigan</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sleeping_bear_dunes_national_lakeshore.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Including sand dunes 400 feet above Lake Michigan and offshore islands, this lovely area is home to pine forests, abandoned farms reverting back to meadowland, the occasional bobcat, and wildflowers such as cowslips and St. John's Wort.</p> <p>Stay at a rural inn like the <a href="http://www.duneswood.com/rooms.html" target="_blank">Duneswood Resort</a> for $100-$200 a night, or in one of the many hotels in Traverse City, where you can stroll the charming downtown. In early July, the city holds its <a href="http://www.cherryfestival.org/our-events/2017-tickets" target="_blank">Cherry Festival</a>, with an air show, concerts, and foodie events.</p> <h2>6. Cannon Beach, Oregon</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/indian_beach_in_ecola_state_park.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>From a single platform at Ecola State Park on this Oregon Coast spot, you can view gray whales, bald eagles, and brown pelicans. At dusk, moose emerge to graze in the park. On the beach, tide pools teem with life that the ocean left behind, including sea stars, hermit crabs, and sometimes even spiny little sea urchins. The best pools are around <a href="http://friendsofhaystackrock.org/haystack-rock-awareness-program/marine-garden-refuge/" target="_blank">Haystack Rock</a>, a 235-foot-tall arrowhead-shaped rock sticking out of the ocean that you can walk to at low tide.</p> <p>Nearby hotels range from $100-$200 or so per night.</p> <h2>7. Joshua Tree National Park, California</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/joshua_tree_national_park_at_sunset_usa.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Don't be fooled into thinking there's nothing to see in the desert &mdash; or that all desert nature is the same. In fact, this <a href="https://www.nps.gov/jotr/planyourvisit/night-sky-festival.htm" target="_blank">Southern California national park</a> sits at the confluence of two distinct desert ecosystems, the low Colorado and the high Mojave. Admire the Seussian trees the park is named for; explore boulder piles, desert washes, and strange rock formations; and gaze at some of the most spectacular night skies you'll see anywhere.</p> <p>You can camp in the park, or stay at the <a href="http://www.campbellhouse29palms.com/" target="_blank">Campbell House</a> bed and breakfast outside the gate for about $150 a night, which gives you the ability to cool off in a swimming pool after hikes.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Affordable%2520Destinations%2520for%2520Nature%2520Lovers.jpg&amp;description=7%20Affordable%20Destinations%20for%20Nature%20Lovers"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Affordable%20Destinations%20for%20Nature%20Lovers.jpg" alt="7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-affordable-autumn-destinations-for-nature-lovers">4 Affordable Autumn Destinations for Nature Lovers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-affordable-destinations-for-people-who-love-to-fish">8 Affordable Destinations for People Who Love to Fish</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-travel-destinations-for-people-who-hate-crowds">10 Travel Destinations for People Who Hate Crowds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-avoid-these-12-summer-travel-mistakes">How to Avoid These 12 Summer Travel Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel affordable travel frugal travel get outside nature nature lovers travel travel destinations travel tips Wed, 07 Jun 2017 08:00:10 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1961112 at http://www.wisebread.com 3 Things You Should Know About Rental Car Insurance http://www.wisebread.com/3-things-you-should-know-about-rental-car-insurance <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/3-things-you-should-know-about-rental-car-insurance" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/enjoying_a_trip_together.jpg" alt="Enjoying a trip together" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>After a long day of traveling, being forced to listen to an upsell for extra insurance at the car rental counter can be frustrating.</p> <p>Some extra rental car insurance may be worthwhile, however. Your own personal car insurance policy may not cover rentals, for example, or maybe you don't have car insurance at all.</p> <p>On the other hand, you may not want to buy insurance from a rental company if it duplicates what your credit card offers, or if your auto insurer already provides rental car coverage through your regular policy.</p> <p>Here are some things to be aware of before a car rental agent tries to pressure you at the rental desk.</p> <h2>Know what is and isn't covered by rental car insurance</h2> <p>There are two types of damage waivers that are commonly sold by rental car companies: Collision Damage Waiver (CDW) and Loss Damage Waiver (LDW). They're often packaged together as CDW/LDW coverage.</p> <p>They serve the same basic function. These waivers aren't necessarily insurance so much as an optional service where the rental car company will cover you if an accident or some other event damages your rental car, or in the case of theft. The waiver only covers the rental car and waives the rental company's right to pursue you, the renter, for damage.</p> <p>What a rental damage waiver won't cover are hospitalization costs if you cause an accident and someone is injured &mdash; that falls under liability coverage. The rental damage waiver also won't cover risky behaviors such as drinking and driving or speeding. If <em>you're</em> hospitalized, your auto insurance policy will take effect.</p> <p>Another type of insurance that you may be offered at the rental counter is supplemental liability insurance. This covers damage to other people's property, such as their cars, and their medical costs if you caused the accident.</p> <p>This extra liability insurance may be worthwhile if your auto or homeowners insurance policies won't cover you. Another option is to buy umbrella liability insurance through the company that provides your auto or homeowners liability insurance, so that you have extra protection while driving a rental car.</p> <h2>When you should consider buying</h2> <p>If you have collision and comprehensive coverage on your personal auto policy, it will typically cover damages to a rental car. However, you will still need to pay your deductible in the event of a claim &mdash; and of course, filing a claim can cause your personal auto insurance rates to spike. Rental damage waivers will typically cover all of the vehicle repair costs, including a deductible. If you don't want to deal with the hassle of paying a high deductible, or filing a claim, you can consider purchasing the CDW/LDW coverage.</p> <p>You may also be renting a vehicle with a far higher market value than the car you own. Your insurer will only pay the value of <em>your</em> car &mdash; not the value of the rental car that's damaged. So if your car isn't worth as much as the rental car, then you may want to consider additional coverage to account for the gap between the value of your personal car and the value of the rental car.</p> <p>If you have <em>no </em>auto insurance, or a personal auto policy with bare minimum liability coverage, you may also want to consider adding supplemental liability protection through the rental company. This will protect you in the event you damage someone else's vehicle or property, or cause injury.</p> <h2>Don't overlook your credit card benefits</h2> <p>When renting a car with a credit card, you're likely to get insurance protections that you may not even realize you have. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-does-car-rental-insurance-really-cover-on-your-credit-card?ref=seealso" target="_blank">What Does Car Rental Insurance Really Cover On Your Credit Card?</a>)</p> <p>Many credit cards provide free collision damage protection for rental cars, with some caveats. First, you must pay for the rental in full with the card, and then decline all optional coverage offered by the rental company.</p> <p>Coverage can vary, but typically a credit card's coverage will be secondary &mdash; meaning it only pays what you can't recover from other insurance. Sometimes cards do offer primary insurance, which would prevent you from having to file a claim with your personal auto policy. You may have to pay upfront for the full damage and get reimbursed later by the credit card company, and coverage is often limited to a two-week rental.</p> <p>Call your card issuer to find out the specifics of what your credit card offers. If you have multiple credit cards, it's worth comparing them to find out which one offers the best coverage on rentals.</p> <p>Credit card rental coverage typically excludes injuries, as well as damage or loss of personal items. Many cards also won't cover any of the rental car company's administrative fees, &quot;loss of use&quot; charges, or the difference between the rental car's actual value and its replacement value.</p> <h2>The bottom line</h2> <p>However you buy rental car insurance, know that you could be on the hook for the costs of an incident until your insurance provider or credit card company comes to an agreement on the cost of repairs with the rental car company.</p> <p>Before driving your rental car off the lot, check it carefully for existing damage and document anything you find with photos. Then, tell the clerk at the rental counter. You don't want to end up paying for damage you didn't cause or fighting with a rental car company. That certainly won't make for a pleasant vacation.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/aaron-crowe">Aaron Crowe</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/3-things-you-should-know-about-rental-car-insurance">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-you-should-buy-the-rental-car-insurance">6 Reasons You Should Buy the Rental Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-a-claim-will-impact-your-car-insurance">Here&#039;s How a Claim Will Impact Your Car Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-how-the-right-rv-and-vehicle-insurance-protects-your-summer-fun">Here&#039;s How the Right RV and Vehicle Insurance Protects Your Summer Fun</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-times-you-shouldnt-file-an-insurance-claim">7 Times You Shouldn&#039;t File an Insurance Claim</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-reasons-you-definitely-need-renters-insurance">5 Reasons You Definitely Need Renters&#039; Insurance</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Insurance accidents auto policies damage waivers deductibles liability protections rentals cars theft travel vacation vehicles Tue, 06 Jun 2017 08:30:16 +0000 Aaron Crowe 1957905 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Affordable Countries Every Outdoor Explorer Can Afford to Visit http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-countries-every-outdoor-explorer-can-afford-to-visit <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-affordable-countries-every-outdoor-explorer-can-afford-to-visit" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/hiking_alone_in_the_mountains.jpg" alt="Hiking alone in the mountains" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Exploring the great outdoors is a wonderful way to spend a vacation, yet it's not always cheap. Many countries have expensive national park fees, camp fees, and general high cost of travel.</p> <p>Check out these inexpensive destinations for your next outdoor adventure.</p> <h2>1. Canada</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/bull_elk_in_banff_in_the_canadian_rockies.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Canada is an incredible destination for nature lovers. With a population of 35 million people spread over a vast 3.85 million square miles spanning from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and north to the Arctic Ocean, opportunities for outdoor recreation in untouched wilderness areas abound.</p> <p>Plus, as a part of the country's celebration of its 150th birthday, this year you can take advantage of the fact that <em>all </em>national parks in Canada are free with the <a href="https://www.commandesparcs-parksorders.ca/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?storeId=22953&amp;categoryId=216870&amp;catalogId=53407" target="_blank">2017 Discovery Pass</a>. With more than 40 national parks throughout the country, there is plenty of outdoor exploration to be done in expansive forests, tundra, and mountainous regions.</p> <p>Canada's well-known highlights such as Vancouver Island, Banff National Park, and the Whistler Blackcomb ski resort are well worth a visit. But you should also consider some lesser-known gems, like going on a <a href="http://arctickingdom.com/trip/narwhal-watching-and-safari/" target="_blank">polar bear and narwhal safari</a> in the far northern province of Nunavut.</p> <p>Highlights in the east of the country include Nova Scotia's Cape Breton Highlands, where you can take in spectacular coastal views and may even glimpse minke or pilot whales breaking offshore. In the winter months, you can ski in Quebec, north of Montreal.</p> <p>Head to the Great Lakes region for an epic canoe or kayak trip in the warmer months. Some of the diverse wildlife you could see along the way may include moose, bears, and loons, just to name a few.</p> <p>As an added budget bonus, the U.S. dollar currently trades around 40 percent better than it did five years ago, so Americans can save some serious money on a trip to our great northern neighbor.</p> <h2>2. Kyrgyzstan</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/kazakh_jurt.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Between its rugged mountain ranges, extensive pasture lands, and high-altitude lakes, this rural country has no shortage of outdoor activities. Seminomadic peoples still live in the mountains here, with yurts dotting many mountainsides.</p> <p>Landing in Bishkek, the country's capital, you can head to Issyk-Kul, the world's second largest alpine lake, which is located at the foot of the Tian Shan Mountains. The area is a great base for an outdoors-oriented vacation, with swimming, hiking, camping, and trekking all available.</p> <p>Other trekking destinations include Lake Song Kol and Lenin Peak on the border with Tajikistan. For those who aren't interested in walking the whole way, horse treks in Kyrgyzstan are a fun way to get around.</p> <p>Kyrgyzstan is an affordable destination overall. We calculate the cost of traveling there at <a href="http://www.goatsontheroad.com/guide-backpacking-kyrgyzstan/" target="_blank">$63 per day for two people</a> sharing accommodations. Plus, you won't have to add visa fees to your travel budget, since no visa is required for Americans visiting for up to 60 days.</p> <p>Discover Kyrgyzstan, the government's official tourism arm, is currently planning new sustainable tourism options around Issyk-Kul and hiking opportunities in the Jyrgalan region, so it's likely that the country will soon be on the radar of all outdoor enthusiasts.</p> <h2>3. Nepal</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/prayer_flags_and_mt._annapurna_i_background.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Nepal is an internationally renowned destination for adventurers, boasting the famous Everest and Annapurna peaks, and lesser-known areas for trekking, such as the Langtang region north of the capital city, Kathmandu. While summiting Everest is a highly technical and expensive undertaking, there are many other treks in the country that are accessible to hikers of nearly all levels.</p> <p>Planning a trek to a mountain base camp is one good option, enabling you to hike in the vicinity of the world's greatest peaks without spending tens of thousands of dollars to summit them. These are still challenging hikes that should not be underestimated, but with training and proper preparation, they are certainly manageable.</p> <p>Most hikes can be easily planned out of Kathmandu, the country's vibrant and busy urban center. Here you can acquire the required permits for your trek, which usually cost around 2,000 Nepali rupees, or about $20. Farther west, the charming tourist town of Pokhara is a common base for travelers preparing to do the popular Annapurna circuit trek.</p> <p>Not only does Nepal boast stunning landscapes, but it's also a very affordable place to travel, with cheap transportation and meals costing as little as $1. Lonely Planet estimates you can travel for as little as $30 a day, including budget accommodations, two meals, and a trekking porter/guide. A midrange organized trek costs $60&ndash;$80 per day.</p> <h2>4. Chile</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/graceful_silhouette_guanaco_on_the_lake_pehoe.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Chile is a country of abundant natural beauty, from its extensive coastline to the impressive mountains of Patagonia &mdash; a breathtaking trekking region at the southern end of Chile and Argentina.</p> <p>Torres del Paine National Park, in the heart of Chilean Patagonia, is replete with glaciers and crystal clear mountain lakes. You'll want to plan a trip between mid-September and early May, which are the southern hemisphere's warmer months.</p> <p>Overall, Patagonia is not a budget destination, but it is quite possible to do one of the famous treks in Torres del Paine without breaking the bank. The entrance fee is around $30, but if you plan to do the W Trek (four days) or the O Trek (around eight days), this fee is minimal given the amount of time you'll be spending in the park.</p> <p>There are also numerous free campsites in the park that can help you save money as well. Pack your own food, stay in as many free campsites as you can, and you can end the entire O Trek in Patagonia spending very little. Even if you do have to pay for campsites, they're only around $15 per person, so it's pretty affordable accommodations!</p> <p>Unless you have a lot of time for a road trip, you'll want to fly into the Patagonian towns of Punta Arenas or Puerto Natales. Be sure to reserve your flight far ahead &mdash; Travel and Leisure recommends booking six months in advance &mdash; to ensure you get a seat on one of these in-demand flights.</p> <p>Other impressive sites in Chile include the Atacama Desert, which is one of the best places on earth for stargazing, given its high altitude and the near absence of humidity in the air. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/these-6-things-will-make-your-next-flight-more-comfortable?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Things That Will Make Your Next Flight More Comfortable</a>)</p> <h2>5. Thailand</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sunset_thai_countryside_in_thailand.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Long known as a budget traveler's paradise, Thailand was recently rated as one of the world's 20 cheapest countries to visit by The Telegraph newspaper. Lonely Planet estimates travelers here can get by on as little as $29 a day, with delicious street meals costing less than $2 in many cases.</p> <p>Known for its beautiful beaches, Thailand is actually a fairly diverse outdoor destination. There are many jungle treks in the north of the country where you can explore the country's rich cultural heritage and visit some of the many impressive temples. Most of these treks depart from Chiang Mai and Chiang Rai.</p> <p>For shorter hikes off the beaten path, check out Sri Phang Nga National Park in southern Thailand, which features spectacular waterfalls, abundant wildlife, and huge parasitic rafflesia flowers.</p> <p>Interested in water activities? Head to islands like Ko Pha Ngan and Ko Tao, where you can complete your scuba diving certification without breaking the bank. An open water certification costs 9,800 baht (or around $285). There is no need to book ahead, since the island is full of dive shops that offer certifications, and you can comfortably shop around for the best price once you arrive.</p> <p>If you're not a diver, you can explore the islands by scooter or foot, stopping to snorkel and swim along the way.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" data-pin-save="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-affordable-countries-every-outdoor-explorer-can-afford-to-visit&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Affordable%2520Countries%2520Every%2520Outdoor%2520Explorer%2520Can%2520Afford%2520to%2520Visit.jpg&amp;description=5%20Affordable%20Countries%20Every%20Outdoor%20Explorer%20Can%20Afford%20to%20Visit"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Affordable%20Countries%20Every%20Outdoor%20Explorer%20Can%20Afford%20to%20Visit.jpg" alt="5 Affordable Countries Every Outdoor Explorer Can Afford to Visit" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-gokee">Amanda Gokee</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-countries-every-outdoor-explorer-can-afford-to-visit">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/camping-for-a-week-is-only-160-at-these-national-parks">Camping for a Week Is Only $160 at These National Parks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-best-cities-for-frugal-lovers-of-the-outdoors">8 Best Cities for Frugal Lovers of the Outdoors</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-diy-air-conditioner-and-14-other-cool-camping-hacks">A DIY Air Conditioner and 14 Other Cool Camping Hacks</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-you-should-never-do-when-camping">7 Things You Should Never Do When Camping</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel camping cheap travel credit cards hiking nature outdoors travel Mon, 05 Jun 2017 08:30:08 +0000 Amanda Gokee 1957907 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Live a Retired Life Before Retirement http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-live-a-retired-life-before-retirement <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-live-a-retired-life-before-retirement" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/falling_in_love_is_so_much_fun.jpg" alt="Falling in love is so much fun" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Many of us dream about being able give up the day job and settle into a life of freedom, flexibility, and financial security in retirement. But unfortunately for many Americans, this dream is getting further and further out of reach. The reality is that the average age at which U.S. citizens are able to retire is on the increase.</p> <p>Being financially prepared is rightly a large concern, particularly because people tend to make big plans for when they do finally retire. It also means that some people put off following their dreams with hopes that they will be better able to afford them later in life.</p> <p>But if you're sensible with your savings and clever with your planning, it's possible to find a balance between securing a comfortable retirement and still living life to its fullest.</p> <h2>Take more time off</h2> <p>Taking vacation is something that shoots fear into the hearts of millions of people. Reasons for this vary from being worried about the amount of work that we'll face when returning to the job, to fears of losing our job altogether as a result of taking too much time off. It's a sad fact that the majority of Americans don't take their full vacation allowance each year, with 55 percent reporting leaving days unused, according to Project: Time Off.</p> <p>If you're among the large number of Americans who don't use their vacation days, then the first step to getting more holidays is simply to take them. Booking your vacations far in advance will allow your employer to plan effectively for the time that you're not there. It also gives you time to help ensure that whoever is covering you knows what they are doing and is properly prepared.</p> <p>If you're already using your allotted time off, consider asking for more. Requesting extra vacation is understandably daunting for many people, but as the old saying goes, if you don't ask, you don't get. It helps if you can provide justification for your extra holiday time, like a dream trip to Europe, and it's even better if you can demonstrate it will have a positive effect on your productivity. In fact, a study by the Harvard Business Review directly linked having more vacation days to an ability to get work done quicker.</p> <p>Another option that many don't even consider is to take unpaid time off. Though this may seem counterproductive, it's basically like buying extra vacation days. If you value your time off then it can work out to be very cost effective.</p> <p>Ask your employer about &quot;banking time,&quot; which basically allows you to work overtime shifts for regular pay (instead of the regular time-and-a-half), and then use those banked days to extend your holidays or take a few extra days off throughout the year when you need a break from the grind.</p> <h2>Focus on discounted, cheap, and free experiences</h2> <p>A great way to enjoy the quality of life that you crave without breaking the bank is to take advantage of discounted and cheap experiences. You might have a list of things that you want to do, see, or accomplish in your lifetime that you're putting off because you think it's too expensive. Instead, try looking out for when it's possible to do these things on the cheap.</p> <p>Always wanted to visit a certain country? Research when high season is and make a plan that allows you to go in low season instead. This will save you money on flights, accommodations, and many activities to do while you're there.</p> <p>Create a bucket list with a twist. Rather than containing activities that cost money, focus on experiences which cost little but provide you with a high sense of personal achievement. Physical activities are good for this, like hiking a certain mountain route or running a marathon, as well as things that will tax your brain like writing a book or learning an instrument.</p> <h2>Move somewhere cheaper</h2> <p>Lots of people envision moving away to a rural area or a tropical place when they retire, but why put it off until then? Moving to a cheaper city, state, or even country could allow you to live out your dreams, save more, and work less all at the same time. If you're not tied to your home by your job, then it doesn't necessarily even have to be a permanent move. You could spend half your time in the cheaper place having fun while still saving money.</p> <p>Numbeo ranks the U.S. as one of the most expensive places to live in the world. This means there's a lot of choice if you are looking for somewhere cheaper to settle down abroad. With 8.7 million Americans living overseas, you won't be alone. There are many <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/x-exciting-world-cities-you-can-afford-to-retire-in" target="_blank">attractive, cheap locations</a> that could be the perfect place to call your new home.</p> <p>If you don't know where to start, write a list of what's important to you in your everyday life and research which places can accommodate those aspects of your life. Lots of countries in South America, Asia, and Europe are <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/retire-for-half-the-cost-in-these-5-countries" target="_blank">significantly less expensive</a> than the U.S. but still offer a great standard of living.</p> <p>Moving to a new country isn't a decision to be taken lightly, and definitely not one that should be made based purely on cost. You need to be sure that the move is right for you and is one that will have a positive impact on your life. But there's no need to hold off until you're 65 to move to an amazing location.</p> <h2>Work from home</h2> <p>If your career is getting in the way of living the life you want right now, then perhaps it's time to start thinking about changing to something that will allow you to do this. The office environment is rapidly transforming, and working from home is no longer a rare and prized entitlement for the lucky few. If you don't have to spend time commuting or dressing for an office environment, you can free up time to do more of what you want to do.</p> <p>Lots of employers are becoming more flexible when it comes to this idea and there is a wide range of opportunities that are well suited for remote work. Advancements in technology have made remote working progressively easier, with a Gallup survey showing that 43 percent of employed Americans spend some portion of time working from home.</p> <p>Some industries that have embraced remote working include finance, insurance, and information technology, so it's a bonus if you already have a background in one of these fields. But even if you don't, the trend of working from home is growing, and may hit your industry soon.</p> <p>Don't confuse working from home with doing less. It's not a way to ease into the retired life in that sense. What it does bring is flexibility around when you work, as well as potentially huge savings in the time wasted getting to and from the office. It's also common for it to lead to increased productivity thanks to having fewer distractions at home than in a typical office environment.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-live-a-retired-life-before-retirement">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-shouldnt-vacation-shame-your-coworkers">7 Reasons You Shouldn&#039;t &quot;Vacation Shame&quot; Your Coworkers</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-worst-states-for-retirees">The 10 Worst States for Retirees</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-questions-couples-must-ask-before-retirement">5 Questions Couples Must Ask Before Retirement</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/i-am-doing-well-financially-now-what">I Am Doing Well Financially. Now What?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-signs-its-time-to-retire">8 Signs It&#039;s Time to Retire</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Lifestyle Retirement discounts experiences moving relocating remote retired life telecommuting time off travel vacation time work from home working Fri, 02 Jun 2017 08:30:07 +0000 Nick Wharton 1958436 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Ways to Turn Credit Card Rewards Into Real Wealth http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-turn-credit-card-rewards-into-real-wealth <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-ways-to-turn-credit-card-rewards-into-real-wealth" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-623196850.jpg" alt="Man turning credit card rewards into real wealth" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Using a rewards credit card is an easy way to pocket a few hundred dollars a year in cash back rewards, or earn free travel. And if you're willing to put in the effort, you'll find there are plenty of ways to parlay your points into something more meaningful and long-lasting.</p> <h2>1. Invest your cash back for the long haul</h2> <p>The simplest way to make <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash back rewards</a> even more rewarding is to put the money into a retirement account and let compound interest work its magic. For example, we've worked out how to save <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-an-extra-109486-a-year?ref=internal" target="_blank">over a thousand dollars a year</a> using credit cards.</p> <p>Let's say you banked your $1,000 in rewards and savings and invested them in a Roth IRA each year for 20 years. If you earned an average return of 6 percent, you'd have almost $40,000 after 20 years, before fees.</p> <h2>2. Invest in experiences</h2> <p>Ask any dying person what they value most, and it won't be money they speak of. Most people look back on their lives and cherish the memories they've made &mdash; the sight of beautiful places, the laughter of their children, and the life-changing moments they've spent with the people they love.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">Travel rewards cards</a> may not help anyone grow rich, but they can help them afford a wide range of experiences that may otherwise be out of reach. An Alaskan cruise may fit into even a modest budget with the smart use of credit card rewards. Meanwhile, a $1000+ economy flight to Europe can be had for as little as 45,000 American Airlines frequent flyer miles, which you can earn with an <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-american-airlines-us-airways-credit-card-should-you-get?ref=internal" target="_blank">American Airlines credit card</a>.</p> <p>Used wisely, travel rewards can help families make memories they'll cherish for a lifetime. At the very least, they make it possible to travel farther, participate in more activities, and stay longer once you're there. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-steps-to-getting-a-free-or-close-to-free-vacation-in-9-months-or-less-with-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Earn a Free Vacation in 9 Months With Credit Card Rewards</a>)</p> <h2>3. Donate rewards to a worthy cause</h2> <p>Even if you aren't remotely interested in spending rewards, you can make a difference. Some <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-that-give-back-to-charity?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit cards give rewards directly to charities</a>. Other credit card programs let you donate your points to charity, letting you turn your regular spending into a boon for someone else.</p> <p>While each credit card rewards program works differently, most make it possible to donate your rewards to causes you believe in. And if you don't want to donate through your issuer's official program, you can always simply give the cash back you earn to your favorite charity.</p> <h2>4. Use rewards to pay down debt and save money on interest</h2> <p>If you have credit card debt, you shouldn't be chasing credit card rewards. But if you have other debt that you'd like to pay off sooner, like a car loan, you can rack up cash rewards and make an extra payment each year. This will help you reduce interest on that debt as well as pay it off sooner.</p> <h2>5. Avoid a high-interest loan</h2> <p>If you have a huge expense coming up and need to take out a loan, you can avoid interest payments and earn rewards in one fell swoop. With a credit card that offers <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-0-apr-for-purchases?ref=internal" target="_blank">0% APR on new purchases</a> you essentially get an interest-free loan for a limited time.</p> <p>For example, let's say you plan to finance a roomful of furniture to the tune of $5,000. You want to pay it off over a year or so, and hope to avoid huge interest payments. You can get a card that offers 0% APR for the first 15 months, allowing you to pay off that $5,000 interest free. Remember though that you have to stay committed to your plan to pay off that amount during that period. Rewards cards typically charge higher interest rates. If you don't think you'll be able to pay off your balance, you'll want instead to look into <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-low-interest-rate-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">low interest credit cards</a> to keep a handle on your debt. Before you pursue rewards, make sure you're prepared to use credit responsibly.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-turn-credit-card-rewards-into-real-wealth">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-reasons-cash-back-is-better-than-travel-rewards">6 Reasons Cash Back Is Better Than Travel Rewards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-things-you-should-never-do-with-your-travel-rewards-credit-cards">7 Things You Should Never Do With Your Travel Rewards Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips">How to Use Travel Rewards Cards to Get Free Trips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-frequent-flyer-miles-that-are-about-to-expire">How to Save Frequent Flyer Miles That Are About to Expire</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-miles-and-points-for-holiday-gifts">9 Ways to Use Miles and Points for Holiday Gifts</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards cash back charity experiences interest loans miles rewards travel wealth building Mon, 22 May 2017 08:30:16 +0000 Holly Johnson 1946267 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Tricks to Save on Summer Travel http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tricks-to-save-on-summer-travel <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-tricks-to-save-on-summer-travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-518856442.jpg" alt="Couple saving money on travel" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found articles on tricks to save on summer travel, top ways to save money, and retirement mistakes to avoid in your 20s and 30s.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.womansday.com/life/work-money/g2957/cheap-summer-travel/">12 Tricks to Save on Summer Travel</a>&nbsp;&mdash; Save on summer travel by using comparison sites and being flexible. [Women's Day]</p> <p><a href="https://christianpf.com/16-ways-to-save-money-by-not-being-normal/">25 Top Ways To Save Money (updated for 2017)</a> &mdash; Want to save money? Buy used gift cards and live in a smaller home. [Christian PF]</p> <p><a href="http://finance.yahoo.com/news/retirement-mistakes-avoid-20s-30s-141052794.html">Retirement mistakes to avoid in your 20s and 30s</a>&nbsp;&mdash; Don't make the retirement mistake of not having a Roth IRA in your 20s and 30s. [Yahoo! Finance]</p> <p><a href="http://livingonthecheap.com/how-to-get-the-best-deals-at-thrift-stores/">How to Get the Best Deals at Thrift Stores</a>&nbsp;&mdash; To get the best deals at thrift stores, shop the sales and think &quot;potential.&quot; [Living on the Cheap]</p> <p><a href="http://www.freemoneyfinance.com/2017/04/10-things-i-learned-while-working-for-the-rich.html">10 Things I Learned While Working For The Rich</a> &mdash; When working for wealthy people, you may learn that a high paying job doesn't always mean an easy financial life. [Free Money Finance]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://www.biblemoneymatters.com/5-steps-to-take-to-make-next-tax-season-easier/">5 Steps To Take To Make Next Tax Season Easier</a> &mdash; Make next tax season easier by keeping all your receipts for charitable donations. [Bible Money Matters]</p> <p><a href="https://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Free-Mother-Day-Card-Printables-43429629">11 Printable Mother's Day Cards You Can Download for Free</a> &mdash; In need of the perfect Mother's Day Card? These freebies may be just the solution you've been looking for! [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/how-to-teach-your-kids-to-accept-losing">How to Teach Your Kids to Accept Losing</a>&nbsp;&mdash; When teaching your kids to accept losing, it's important to give them time and space. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Technology/2017/0407/Google-rolls-out-new-Fact-Check-tool-worldwide-to-combat-fake-news">Google rolls out new 'Fact Check' tool worldwide to combat fake news</a>&nbsp;&mdash; Do you think that Google's new 'Fact Check' tool will prevent the spread of fake news? [The Christian Science Monitor]</p> <p><a href="http://www.bankrate.com/cashlorette/5-money-hacks-you-should-try-now-to-save-more/">5 money hacks you should try now to save more</a> &mdash; Did you know that grocery items may be marked down in the morning, making shopping early a great way to save money? [Bankrate]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/ashley-jacobs">Ashley Jacobs</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-tricks-to-save-on-summer-travel">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation">11 Ways to Get the Most Value From Your All-Inclusive Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-things-you-can-do-in-denver-that-you-cant-do-anywhere-else">8 Things You Can Do in Denver That You Can&#039;t Do Anywhere Else</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-that-transfer-points-to-airline-miles">The Best Credit Cards that Transfer Points to Airline Miles</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel best money tips travel Fri, 21 Apr 2017 08:00:08 +0000 Ashley Jacobs 1930339 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 College Expenses You Aren't Saving For http://www.wisebread.com/9-college-expenses-you-arent-saving-for <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-college-expenses-you-arent-saving-for" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock-517076077.jpg" alt="Parent finding college expenses she didn&#039;t save for" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Worried that tuition and room and board will bleed you dry when your kid goes off to college? Pfft. Wait till you get a load of all the expenses you didn't account for! You'll want to sit down for this.</p> <h2>1. College prep items</h2> <p>You'll want to send your kid off to college well prepared &mdash; with things. Things like study and work supplies, dorm room necessities, snack foods, toiletries, a new computer, maybe a new phone. It's amazing how easily items pile up when you're shopping for college.</p> <h2>2. Traveling home and back</h2> <p>No loving parent can go too long without seeing their kid &mdash; especially their freshman year in college. So, you'll need to account for travel costs to get your child back and forth to your home if they attend a school that requires more than a few hours' travel.</p> <p>&quot;Create a travel budget by researching typical costs for airfare, train, or bus, whichever mode of transportation is available to you, and estimate the number of times your child will head home throughout the year,&quot; suggests money-saving expert Andrea Woroch. &quot;If they have a car and are driving [a long] distance away from home, propose that they carpool to save on gas and tolls if applicable.&quot;</p> <p>They can also use a site like <a href="https://www.zimride.com/" target="_blank">Zimride</a>, which will connect them with other college students looking to share a ride.</p> <h2>3. Local transportation costs</h2> <p>If your child has a car on campus, you're looking at the cost of a parking pass plus insurance and gas. If they don't have a car, you'll need to consider a new bike and investigate the cost of public transportation passes. These costs can add up, as well. College students don't tend to be holed up in their tiny dorm rooms while not in class.</p> <h2>4. Food outside the meal plan</h2> <p>College meal plans are expensive enough by themselves, but don't count on those being your child's only source of food. Many campus dining halls close earlier than you probably think, and late night study sessions require energy. Plan on having to send them some extra dollars for groceries, snacks, and late-night diner runs.</p> <h2>5. Greek life</h2> <p>I was interested in joining a fraternity when I went to college. It signified the quintessential coming-of-age experience to me, and I liked the idea of having &quot;brothers,&quot; as I wasn't close with my own growing up.</p> <p>Nice sentiment, but it got expensive real quick.</p> <p>My dues were about $400 per semester, I wanted to buy new clothes every time we had a formal or theme party, and if something went wrong in the house &mdash; like the one time a drunk alumni brother smashed up our soda machine &mdash; we had to collectively cover the cost. By the end of four years, I had spent thousands of dollars to be part of this exclusive club &mdash; which, in hindsight, was worth every penny considering the memories I made. So, I guess what I'm saying here is &hellip; grab your checkbook.</p> <h2>6. Sports and extracurriculars</h2> <p>If you're the parent of a child whose athletic skills have earned them a college scholarship, congrats; consider yourself lucky. On the other hand, if your child is perfectly average but still wants to play sports or join extracurriculars, you'll need to cough up the cash.</p> <p>&quot;Sometimes participating in extracurricular activities on campus can cost extra money,&quot; says Johan Zhang, co-founder of CollegeVine. &quot;Whether it's paying for club dues, schoolwide participation fees, or even apparel, at many colleges there exists a hidden cost to joining and being an active member in extracurricular activities..&quot;</p> <p>Be sure to consider this and save up in advance.</p> <h2>7. Your trips to see your child</h2> <p>Bringing your kid home is going to cost you, and so is traveling to visit your child. You may also want to attend things like orientation weekend, parents' weekend, and other events hosted by the college. You'll need to factor in transportation, lodging, and food, so budget wisely.</p> <h2>8. Off-campus living</h2> <p>Eventually your kid will outgrow the dorm and want to live off-campus. This usually happens around junior year, but sometimes you can hold it off until senior year. With that comes the expense of monthly rent, renter's insurance, furniture, utility bills, and a security deposit that you're never going to see again. Make amends with that right now; it's already spent.</p> <h2>9. The extended plan</h2> <p>Listen, I'm rooting for you to get your kid in and out of college in four years, but, well... the odds aren't in your favor.</p> <p>&quot;At most public universities, over 80 percent of students will take more than four years to graduate due to overcrowded or unavailable classes,&quot; say Adrian Ridner, CEO and co-founder of Study.com. &quot;That means if you are planning on four years of college expenses, you could be under budgeting by 25 percent to 50 percent. Taking low cost college courses online can be a great way to stay on track and graduate on time. Another factor that can extend your child's time in school is lack of college readiness. This may mean completing remedial courses that do not count toward graduation.&quot;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-college-expenses-you-arent-saving-for">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/heres-what-you-need-to-know-before-buying-a-college-meal-plan">Here&#039;s What You Need to Know Before Buying a College Meal Plan</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-things-financial-aid-might-not-cover">6 Things Financial Aid Might Not Cover</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-surprising-ways-to-get-more-college-financial-aid">12 Surprising Ways to Get More College Financial Aid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-start-a-family-before-reaching-these-5-money-goals">Don&#039;t Start a Family Before Reaching These 5 Money Goals</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-money-moves-every-new-college-student-should-make">7 Money Moves Every New College Student Should Make</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Education & Training college dining plans dorm rooms expenses food costs fraternities hidden costs kids sororities students transportation travel Tue, 11 Apr 2017 08:00:16 +0000 Mikey Rox 1923858 at http://www.wisebread.com