affordable travel http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/9310/all en-US How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-big-on-last-minute-travel <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-save-big-on-last-minute-travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/tourist_couple_happy_and_excited_together_for_the_trip.jpg" alt="Tourist couple happy and excited together for the trip" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Do you need to get out of town in a hurry? To find the best deals on travel, you usually have to make your reservations at least a few months in advance. But sometimes, it just isn't possible and you'll have to be on the lookout for last-minute deals. Thankfully, there are some types of travel reservations that go on sale within days, or even hours of use.</p> <p>Here are a few of the most popular ways to save money on travel booked without advance reservations.</p> <h2>Look for frequent flyer awards</h2> <p>Whether you earn your frequent flyer miles using <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel credit cards</a> or by flying, in my experience, the two ways to receive the most value from your frequent flyer miles is to book expensive flights in business or first class, or to travel on otherwise expensive tickets booked without advance notice. Actually, you can often use your rewards to do both and realize a value of several cents per point or mile redeemed. That's the kind of value worth cashing in for. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-airlines-frequent-flyer-miles-have-the-best-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Airline's Frequent Flyer Miles Have the Best Value?</a>)</p> <p>For example, Lufthansa tends to only release its business and first class award seats to Star Alliance partner airlines within two weeks of departure. To book these seats, you could use miles from United Airlines, Air Canada, or Singapore Airlines. Other airlines that are good at offering last-minute award flights include Delta and British Airways, neither of which charge close-in booking fees.</p> <p>On the other hand, United does charge a close-in booking fee for flights booked less than 21 days before departure, but it will let <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-united-mileageplus-credit-card-should-you-get?ref=internal" target="_blank">United credit card</a> holders and those with elite status book any available seat as an Everyday award. Those awards cost at least double the miles of the harder-to-find Saver awards, but there are more of them available. The extra points it will cost you is often worth it to snag a very expensive ticket at the last minute.</p> <p>Thankfully, I've even been able to avoid United's $75 fee by booking a flight I didn't want that's outside the 21-days advance purchase window. Then I immediately call the airline and change the flight to the date I actually do want, which is within the 21-day window. Everyone has the right to change their flight within 24 hours of booking without incurring change fees. For some reason that $75 close-in booking fee also doesn't get charged if you make this change by phone &mdash; but it won't work if you try to change the ticket online. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/20-secrets-of-last-minute-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">20 Secrets of Last-Minute Travel</a>)</p> <h2>Use the right app or website</h2> <p>When it comes to last-minute travel, several apps and websites can be your best friend. Here are a few of the top ones:</p> <h3>1. icruise</h3> <p><a href="https://www.icruise.com/" target="_blank">icruise</a> is a website and app with a special section for last-minute cruises being offered at steep discounts.</p> <h3>2. GTFO</h3> <p><a href="http://www.gtfoflights.com" target="_blank">GTFO</a> stands for Get The Flight Out, and this website lists some of the cheapest last-minute flights out of nine top cities in the U.S.</p> <h3>3. HotelTonight</h3> <p><a href="https://www.hoteltonight.com/" target="_blank">HotelTonight</a> is an app that lives up to its name by offering discounted rooms up to a week in advance or as late as the same day. This service searches available properties in over 1,700 cities.</p> <h3>4. Last Minute Travel</h3> <p><a href="https://www.lastminutetravel.com" target="_blank">Last Minute Travel</a> offers discounted hotels, flights, cruises, rental cars, and more to those who pay a $50 annual membership fee. It claims to offer discounts of up to 65 percent, as well as personalized offers by email.</p> <h3>5. One:Night</h3> <p><a href="http://onenight.com/" target="_blank">One:Night</a> is an app that offers hotel deals in select major cities after 3 p.m. local time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-best-websites-for-last-minute-airfare-deals?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Best Websites for Last-Minute Airfare Deals</a>)</p> <h2>Negotiate</h2> <p>Long before apps were invented, resourceful travelers would take it upon themselves to find the best last-minute deals possible. Today, you can still strike a great deal under the right circumstances. When it comes to hotels, you can call around, or even visit the front desk to find the best rate. To start, simply ask what's available and what their best rate is. Then, ask if there's any way that they can do better. Try to find out if the person you're speaking with has the authority to offer a lower rate and if not, don't hesitate to ask for someone who does.</p> <p>It can also help to have a good reason for booking a room at the last minute. For example, if you're traveling because of an emergency, or you need a room for the night because your trip was disrupted, share that information with hotel staff, and they may offer you a distressed traveler rate.</p> <p>Rental car agencies will be less flexible, but managers of local franchises may have the discretion to offer lower rates during periods of weak demand. Sadly, you're unlikely to achieve these results if you attempt to bargain with airline staff, but there's little harm in asking them to help you find the best possible price once you've exhausted all other possibilities. They may not be able to bargain, but if you're nice, they might share some tips or tricks you didn't know.</p> <h2>Consider last-minute cruise deals</h2> <p>Just before a big cruise ship leaves port, unsold cabins are sometimes offered at a steep discount. If your travel plans are flexible and you can make it to any of the major ports, then you can find some great deals. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-little-known-secrets-to-saving-money-on-your-next-cruise?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Little-Known Secrets to Saving Money on Your Next Cruise</a>)</p> <p>To find these last-minute cruise tickets, there are several places you can check. First, the websites of the cruise lines themselves have special sections for last-minute deals. A few to try are <a href="https://www.royalcaribbean.com/cruise-deals/last-minute-cruises" target="_blank">Royal Caribbean</a>, <a href="https://www.princess.com/html/global/cruisedeals/last-minute-cruise-deals/" target="_blank">Princess</a> and <a href="https://www.ncl.com/cruise-deals" target="_blank">Norwegian Cruise Line</a>. Next, look at third-party sites that specialize in last-minute deals, such as <a href="https://www.cruises.com/promotion/last-minute-cruises.do" target="_blank">Cruises.com</a>, <a href="http://www.lastminutecruises.com/" target="_blank">Last Minute Cruises</a> and even <a href="https://www.costcotravel.com/Cruise-Travel-Offers/Last-Minute-Cruises" target="_blank">Costco Travel</a>.</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/how-to-save-big-on-last-minute-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-3"> <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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny 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/7-ways-to-save-on-a-european-getaway-with-kids">7 Ways to Save on a European Getaway With Kids</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/watch-out-for-these-hidden-costs-of-free-travel">Watch Out for These Hidden Costs of Free Travel</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-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less">How a Family of 4 Can Book a Disney Vacation for $1,000 or Less</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel flight booking hotels last-minute travel travel budget travel tips Thu, 21 Jun 2018 08:31:13 +0000 Jason Steele 2150388 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas http://www.wisebread.com/6-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_enjoys_her_summer_holiday_in_the_tropics.jpg" alt="Woman enjoys her summer holiday in the tropics" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Vacationing with your children may be the stuff memories are made of, but it's also <em>a lot</em> of work. In between moments of relaxation and travel-induced excitement, you do have to take care of them, after all.</p> <p>Kids need meals and clean clothes, and they tend to ask a million and one questions &mdash; especially when they're somewhere new. And if you have kids in diapers or little ones who can't walk on their own, well, you can forget about having much of a &quot;vacation&quot; at all.</p> <p>Now, let's say you get a chance to vacation without the kids. Sounds like a dream come true, right? It is, except that you may not be able to justify spending a lot of cash when you have kids at home. With that in mind, it's smart to look for trips that let you enjoy some kid-free time without breaking the bank. Here are a few options to consider.</p> <h2>1. Pet-sit somewhere new</h2> <p>If your budget is pretty small and you're willing to go almost anywhere, a pet-sitting gig may be an option you want to explore.</p> <p><a href="https://www.trustedhousesitters.com/us/" target="_blank">TrustedHousesitters.com</a>, the biggest international housesitting and pet-sitting website, allows you to search for jobs all over the globe. You don't get paid for these gigs, but you can score a free Airbnb-style vacation experience if you're willing to watch pets while their owner is away.</p> <p>Where can you go? A quick look at the website shows homes requiring pet care in destinations like New Zealand, the United Kingdom, Hawaii, and Dubai. While these destinations can be expensive to fly to, you may be able to get your flights covered for free with the right combination of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel credit cards</a>.</p> <p>There are plenty of more realistic and closer options as well, ranging from Las Vegas to Denver to Orlando, Florida. Most of these gigs require you to care for a few cats, a dog, or some chickens for a few days or a few weeks.</p> <p>Competition can be stiff for attractive destinations, so you'll need to build an attractive profile and gather a few references. But then start bidding on the destinations of your dreams. It's a great way to score free accommodations in an interesting setting. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-tips-for-landing-the-perfect-house-sitting-gig?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Tips for Landing the Perfect House-Sitting Gig</a>)</p> <h2>2. Book a discount cruise</h2> <p>Don't like the idea of watching pets? Consider a discount cruise somewhere warm or, even more importantly, quiet. You can book fairly inexpensive seven-night cruises to destinations like the Caribbean starting at around $449 per person, and these cruises include your lodging, entertainment, and three meals a day at one price.</p> <p>To find the best deals, consider low-cost cruise lines like Carnival and MSC Cruises. Also look for a cruise port you can drive to, which will vary depending on where you live. If you can skip airfare and drive to a cruise port in New Orleans, Louisiana; Florida; Galveston, Texas, or New York City, for example, you can reduce the costs of your trip considerably.</p> <p><a href="https://www.vacationstogo.com/index.cfm" target="_blank">VacationstoGo.com</a> is a solid place to search for discount cruises or just compare prices, and that's particularly true if you can cruise last-minute. The website's 90-day ticker connects you with unsold cruise cabins on soon-to-depart cruises for up to 82 percent off. Since not all cruises carry that kind of discount, you should also make sure to compare prices with cruises you book directly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-money-saving-items-to-bring-on-your-next-cruise?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Money-Saving Items to Bring on Your Next Cruise</a>)</p> <h2>3. Be reclusive at an all-inclusive</h2> <p>Booking an all-inclusive resort can be similar to booking a cruise since your accommodation, food, and entertainment is included for one low price. Many all-inclusive resorts are also marketed to adults only, meaning you won't have to deal with anyone's children. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-ways-to-get-the-most-value-from-your-all-inclusive-vacation?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Ways to Get the Most from Your All-Inclusive Vacation</a>)</p> <p>There are plenty of all-inclusive resorts you can book with rewards as well, including the adults-only Hyatt Zilara properties in Cancun, Mexico and Montego Bay, Jamaica. Both properties cost 25,000 Hyatt points per night based on double occupancy, but include your food, drink (with alcohol), and fun in the nightly rate. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/all-inclusive-resorts-you-can-book-for-free-with-points?ref=seealso" target="_blank">All-Inclusive Resorts You Can Book For Free With Points</a>)</p> <p>You will likely have to fly to all-inclusive resorts since the majority are located outside the U.S. But a good airline credit card strategy could help you score round-trip flights for free. The <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-southwest-airlines-is-the-best-domestic-airline-for-families?ref=internal" target="_blank">Southwest Rapid Rewards</a> program is a good option for flights to the Caribbean since you get two free checked bags and flights frequently go on sale, but JetBlue can work well too, provided they fly out of your home airport. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-co-branded-airline-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Co-Branded Airline Credit Cards</a>)</p> <h2>4. Camping</h2> <p>If you're not into the resort scene and really just want to relax, camping can also work for a kid-free trip. It will certainly be a lot easier &mdash; and less stressful &mdash; with only yourself to care for versus your entire crew.</p> <p>Camping can also be inexpensive if you choose a frugal trip versus &quot;glamping&quot; in a luxury cabin rental. You may be able to borrow a tent from a family member or friend and camp for little more than the cost of a camping spot at a state park, which could be less than $15 per night without electricity. Bring a cooler of food, a good book, and some fishing gear and you could get away for almost nothing. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-essential-money-saving-items-to-take-on-a-camping-road-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Essential Money-Saving Items to Take on a Camping Road Trip</a>)</p> <h2>5. Carefree beach vacation</h2> <p>A beach trip can be frugal if you're able and willing to skip the big mega-resorts and book something inexpensive instead. Imagine yourself in an affordable Airbnb for the week in a beachfront destination like Panama City, Florida, for example. You won't need a huge place, since the kids will be at home, so a one-bedroom or studio condo should work great. Condos that could work start at less than $90 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-budget-friendly-beach-destinations?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Affordable Beach Destinations</a>)</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/1_0.jpg" width="605" height="395" alt="" /></p> <p>If you don't live anywhere near the ocean, don't discount the possibility of booking a lakefront cabin, either. Tons of waterfront options are available on websites like Airbnb and VRBO.com, but you should look for deals within driving distance.</p> <p>Why is the beach such an affordable option? Because water provides a lot of activities. Depending on where you are, you could partake in a number of affordable pursuits that range from fishing, to stand-up paddle boarding, to kayaking, to good ol' swimming. Or, you could curl up in a hammock and listen to the waves while you read, paint, draw, or sit by a campfire. Book a place with a basic kitchen, and you may not even have to leave.</p> <h2>6. Winery weekend</h2> <p>A winery weekend is a trip that's hard to pull off with the kids in tow. But when you're kid-free, you can have your wine, learn about it, and drink it, too. Of course, you<em> can </em>drive to Napa, California to sample locally grown grapes and stay in fancy resorts, but don't forget there may be wineries closer to home, too.</p> <p>In Michigan, there are <a href="https://www.michigan.org/wine-beer-spirit-trails" target="_blank">actual wine trails</a> to explore &mdash; or, at least, strings of wineries and breweries you can visit one after another with hotel stops in between. This option can be affordable since you get to choose where you stay along the way.</p> <p>If you don't want to drive, you can also book a winery weekend at an adjacent hotel or a winery with a hotel on-site. A Romanza Suite at the South Coast Winery Resort &amp; Spa in Temecula, California starts at just $219 per night, for example.</p> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/2_1.jpg" width="605" height="232" alt="" /></p> <p>You can stay right on-site, pay $15 to $20 per person for wine tastings and even take a winery tour complete with wine and charcuterie.</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/6-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas">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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny Budget</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-places-to-travel-where-the-dollar-is-still-strong">8 Places to Travel Where the Dollar Is Still Strong</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-free-things-you-can-do-on-any-vacation">8 Free Things You Can Do on Any Vacation</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-ways-to-save-on-a-european-getaway-with-kids">7 Ways to Save on a European Getaway With Kids</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel getaways kid-free vacations romantic getaways travel tips vacation ideas Tue, 19 Jun 2018 08:30:26 +0000 Holly Johnson 2149480 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/girlfriends_having_fun_on_road_trip.jpg" alt="Girlfriends having fun on road trip" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>When it comes to the standard family vacation, there's almost nothing more American than the old-fashioned summer road trip. And this type of trip may be more popular than ever thanks to low gas prices and the diversity of destinations within the U.S.</p> <p>According to the 2017-2018 Portrait of American Travelers study, which is sponsored by travel and hospitality marketing firm MMGY, 85 percent of American vacations take place within the U.S. This figure represents a 7 percent increase from the previous year's numbers, which means 13.9 million more vacations were taken domestically instead of internationally during this study session. Road trips are increasingly popular, with 39 percent of U.S. leisure travel over the last year including a stint on the road, an increase of 17 percent over the prior year.</p> <p>If you're angling for a road trip this year but hoping to keep costs low, it's smart to start planning now. With some creative thinking, you may be able to cover the bulk of your expenses with rewards and keep your total out-of-pocket costs to a minimum. And this is true no matter where you plan to explore, from the Great Smoky Mountains to the arid deserts of the Southwestern U.S.</p> <p>Here's how to finagle a seven-night road trip around the U.S. for $350 or less. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-have-a-fun-family-road-trip-without-breaking-your-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Have a Fun Family Road Trip Without Breaking Your Budget</a>)</p> <h2>Cover gas with cash back</h2> <p>One of the biggest expenses of any road trip is the cash it will take to fuel your car. The price of this expense can vary depending on your car's fuel economy and how far you plan to travel, but it will mostly like take up a good chunk of your road trip budget.</p> <p>One of the easiest ways to get your gas covered is by signing up for a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">cash-back credit card</a> that offers an initial sign-up bonus and gives you ongoing rewards for your spending. With a cash-back card, you can redeem your points for statement credits to cover your gas after your road trip is over.</p> <p>The key to choosing a cash-back card for this expense is looking for a card with the highest rate of return, hopefully more than the standard 1 percent back. A big sign-up bonus is a plus as well.</p> <p>Make sure you come up with an idea of the total rewards you'll need to cover your gas purchases ahead of time. AAA has a solid <a href="https://gasprices.aaa.com/aaa-gas-cost-calculator/" target="_blank">gas cost calculator</a> that can help you determine what you'll spend based on the car you drive and other details. For example, if you plan to drive from Mobile, Alabama to the Grand Canyon in a 2009 Honda Civic that gets 30 miles per gallon on average, this calculator reveals the fuel cost at $146.92 one-way or $293.84 round-trip at today's gas prices.</p> <p>In that case, you would need to earn nearly $300 in cash-back to cover fuel costs before you go, which shouldn't be that difficult when you combine a sign-up bonus and regular spending on the card.</p> <p>You may also want to consider how you can earn more cash back on the road on that gas you'll be buying. Cards that earn <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-gas-rewards-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">extra points for spending on gas</a> are ideal for this purpose. (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>Pick up a co-branded hotel credit card or two</h2> <p>One huge advantage of road trips is the fact that you may be able to stay in lower-end, roadside hotels and motels. Doing so will make your hotel stays considerably less expensive in points or cash.</p> <p>A <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-credit-cards-for-hotel-deals-and-rewards?ref=internal" target="_blank">co-branded hotel credit card</a> or two can easily help you cover a week's worth of hotel stays around the country, although the right card for you depends on your itinerary.</p> <p>Imagine you plan to drive through the Black Hills of South Dakota and all the way to Yellowstone National Park. In that case, earning rewards with the IHG Rewards program could be beneficial if you plan to stay in Winner or Fort Pierre, South Dakota on the way. Both cities offer IHG properties that are just 15,000 IHG Rewards points per night.</p> <p>On the way from the Black Hills to Yellowstone, you would probably want to drive through Wyoming. Once again, the IHG Rewards program is a great one for this state. In cities like Casper, Lander, and Buffalo, Wyoming, there are numerous IHG properties for 15,000&ndash;20,000 IHG Rewards points per night. These destinations (Casper, especially) are also worth a visit on their own and not just a place to lay your head at night. Casper boasts a beautiful mountain backdrop, museums, and hiking trails with waterfalls. What's not to love?</p> <p>Still, your road map may look totally different. Maybe you're driving through the Everglades to the Florida Keys or exploring the northeastern coast of the U.S. Take the time to explore <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/breakdown-of-benefits-and-value-of-the-best-hotel-rewards-programs-and-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">hotel credit cards and loyalty programs</a> to find options that will work with your itinerary, then consider signing up for a few. By staying outside big cities and closer to the highway, you will find options that cost a lot fewer points. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-travel-hacks-for-an-affordable-summer-road-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Travel Hacks for an Affordable Summer Road Trip</a>)</p> <h2>Using flexible travel credit for guided tours and miscellaneous travel expenses</h2> <p>The next challenge you'll face is figuring out how to cover the other components of your trip &mdash; expenses like museum entries, park visits, or guided tours. This is one area where you'll want some flexibility in how you can redeem your rewards, which is why <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-with-easy-travel-redemption?ref=internal" target="_blank">cards that offer travel statement credits</a> are perfect.</p> <p>Many flexible rewards cards offer two points for each dollar you spend, then let you redeem them for a statement credit against any travel purchase at a rate of one cent per point. If you can earn a sign-up bonus worth 50,000 points, for example, you could redeem them for $500 in travel including day trips and excursions.</p> <p>Also consider checking out a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-might-be-the-best-travel-rewards-program-no-matter-what-airline-you-fly?ref=internal" target="_blank">popular credit card rewards program</a> to pay for excursions and tours. This program lets you book an endless number of activities all over the country, and your experience will be free if you pay with points. Options can include <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/once-in-a-lifetime-experiences-ive-earned-with-credit-card-rewards?ref=internal" target="_blank">once-in-a-lifetime experiences</a> like kayaking tours, guided hikes, food tours, and museums. Basically, you can book almost anything found on Viator.com through this program &mdash; except you get the privilege of paying with points.</p> <p>If you play your cards right and use a combination of flexible rewards and travel credit, you could book all your family's activities for free.</p> <h2>Cover your other travel expenses</h2> <p>If you cover gas with cash-back, book free hotels with hotel points, and pay for excursions and tours with travel credit or other rewards points, the bulk of your trip will be free. So, what does that leave?</p> <p>Other expenses you'll need to cover may vary depending on your family and travel style, but there's one giant cost you likely can't get away from &mdash; food.</p> <p>This is one area where you'll want to set a daily budget and look for ways to save. Hopefully, you can set a dining budget of $50 per day, or $350 for the week. However, you may spend more or less depending on the age of your kids and your flexibility in dining options. If you love to splurge for a nightly dinner out, you will likely need to spend more than $350 for the week. If your kids are cool with eating PB&amp;Js out of a cooler, on the other hand, you could spend even less. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-dining-out?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Credit Cards for Dining Out</a>)</p> <p>Either way, it's possible to save on food while you travel. Here are some strategies to consider and plan for ahead of time:</p> <ul> <li> <p><strong>Booking a hotel with free breakfast</strong>: Although you'll likely be covering your hotels with points, many lower end properties bookable with the big hotel brands (Holiday Inn Express, Comfort Inn, Hampton Inn, etc.) offer free breakfast as a perk whether you pay in cash or points. Make sure to scan rewards programs for options that include breakfast for free so you can avoid paying for this meal altogether.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Eat on the road</strong>: You can pick up fast food that's fairly healthy, although your options may be limited depending on where you're traveling.</p> </li> <li> <p><strong>Pack meals ahead of time:</strong> Bring a cooler with snacks, sandwiches, and ingredients you can use to make a healthy meal. Lunch meat, bread, fresh fruit, and carrot sticks can easily be brought along on your trip to cover lunch for each day of the week. (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> </li> <li> <p><strong>Read restaurant reviews and study menus online:</strong> One of the most important steps you'll take to save money on food is not walking into the first restaurant you see. Use the internet to search for affordable dining along the route of your trip so you can avoid pricey establishments and dine on a budget instead.</p> </li> </ul> <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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-to-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520to%2520Take%2520a%25207-Day%2520Cross%2520Country%2520Road%2520Trip%2520for%2520%2524350%2520or%2520Less.jpg&amp;description=How%20to%20Take%20a%207-Day%20Cross%20Country%20Road%20Trip%20for%20%24350%20or%20Less"></a></p> <script async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></div> </p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/How%20to%20Take%20a%207-Day%20Cross%20Country%20Road%20Trip%20for%20%24350%20or%20Less.jpg" alt="How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less" 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/holly-johnson">Holly Johnson</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">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-save-big-on-last-minute-travel">How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel</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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny 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/8-affordable-us-destinations-for-a-weekend-getaway">8 Affordable U.S. Destinations for a Weekend 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/how-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less">How a Family of 4 Can Book a Disney Vacation for $1,000 or Less</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-ways-to-save-on-a-european-getaway-with-kids">7 Ways to Save on a European Getaway With Kids</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel cross-country drive road trip road trip costs travel budget travel tips Mon, 18 Jun 2018 08:30:20 +0000 Holly Johnson 2149184 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Ways to Find Child Care While Traveling http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-find-child-care-while-traveling <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-ways-to-find-child-care-while-traveling" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/father_and_son_taking_a_selfie_in_venice.jpg" alt="Father and son taking a selfie in Venice" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Being able to afford a family vacation may give you a sense of pride and joy &mdash; especially if you had to save for a while. There's something magical about splurging for a week away to try new activities with the kids. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/yes-affordable-family-travel-is-possible?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Yes, Affordable Family Travel Is Possible</a>)</p> <p>No dishes. No bills. No work calls or meetings with the boss. Just you and your kids enjoying life. We all need a break from the minutiae of daily life, right?</p> <p>Still, traveling with kids isn't all rainbows and cupcakes; it's also notoriously exhausting. Sleeping in a hotel room with children can be a challenge on its own, but there are also nap times, snack times, and meltdowns to deal with. It helps if the parents get a break every now and then.</p> <p>The ideal scenario is one where you travel with kids but also have a baby sitter on hand. You may not need full-time help, but even an hour or two each day can give you some space to relax in your own way. (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> <p>If you are someone who loves the idea of having child-care on a family vacation, consider these strategies.</p> <h2>1. Plan a vacation with built-in child-care</h2> <p>There are a few trips you can book where child-care is ready and waiting for you, the first of which is all-inclusive resorts. Many of these resorts are on the beach in destinations like the Caribbean and Mexico, and they offer your food, drink, lodging, and entertainment for one price.</p> <p>The majority of all-inclusive resorts also offer dedicated kids' clubs where you can drop your kids off for a few hours or the entire day. Some only allow you to drop off your kids for a few hours at a time, while others are open from morning until night.</p> <p>There are some <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/all-inclusive-resorts-you-can-book-for-free-with-points?ref=internal" target="_blank">all-inclusive resorts you can book with points</a> as well. The Hyatt Ziva Rose Hall in Montego Bay, Jamaica, for example, costs just 25,000 points per night (double occupancy) plus a 12,500 point per night supplement for each child. This resort includes food, drink, and fun, plus a kids' club that is open all day.</p> <h2>2. Book a cruise</h2> <p>Cruises are notorious for offering family-friendly (and affordable) fun, but part of that is the fact they have on-site child-care. The vast majority of major cruise lines offer some kind of kids' club that is open most or all of the day. Some cruise lines will even watch your child while you leave the ship at your cruise stop for the day.</p> <p>Many onboard kids' clubs offer much more than baby-sitting as well. On the MSC Divina, for example, kids participate in language lessons, crafts, games, and trivia. Not only are you getting child-care, but you're giving your children a unique experience of their own.</p> <h2>3. Travel with another family and swap baby-sitting</h2> <p>Imagine your family decides to rent a beach house with another family. You may save money by splitting the costs, and it can be convenient to have more adult eyes on all the kids. If you swap a night or two of baby-sitting, everybody wins.</p> <p>Still, this scenario won't always work. You would have to be able to settle on a place to stay with another family, and you would need to get along reasonably well to avoid conflict. Having access to child-care wouldn't be worth it if your family was miserable, so you would need to choose your tripmates wisely. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/beyond-disney-8-affordable-family-destinations-in-the-us?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Beyond Disney: 8 Affordable Family Destinations in the U.S.</a>)</p> <h2>4. Book child-care through your hotel</h2> <p>While some hotels offer kids' clubs, there are just as many that offer child-care you can book separately from your room rate. If you stay at select Walt Disney Resorts, for example, you can book in-room baby-sitting starting at $18 per hour for one child ($21 for two; $24 for three; $26 for four). It's not cheap by any means, but it can give you a break to go out to dinner or enjoy some quiet time.</p> <p>Many Omni hotel properties also offer kids' clubs and baby-sitting for a fee. At the Omni Homestead Resort in Hot Springs, Virginia, a full day of child-care with lunch costs $77 for the first child and $57 for each additional child, for example.</p> <h2>5. Bring a vacation nanny on your trip</h2> <p>If you're taking a special trip and don't mind splurging, you can also bring a vacation nanny along. This might work best if someone you know is able to travel and care for your children. You would need to pay all their travel expenses at the very least, and you will likely need to pay them a daily rate as well.</p> <p>You could also <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-vacations-to-please-every-age-group?ref=internal" target="_blank">plan a multigenerational trip</a>, potentially bringing a grandparent or set of grandparents along. You may secure some child-care that way, although you should ask ahead of time to make sure your expectations will be met.</p> <p>If you don't know anyone who would work, you can also use a service to hire a vacation nanny. For example, NannyPoppinz.com makes it easy to hire vetted nannies that will travel where you are and provide child-care during your trip.</p> <p>For this to work, however, you would need to feel comfortable spending your vacation with a stranger. You would also need to have a relatively large vacation rental (suite, rental condo, rental home, etc.) so your nanny could have their own space. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-handle-world-travel-with-your-family?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Travel Internationally With Your Kids</a>)</p> <h2>6. Use child-care websites to find sitters nearby</h2> <p>If none of the above scenarios work for you, consider hiring as-needed baby-sitting in the destinations where you're traveling. Care.com and SitterCity.com are good resources when it comes to finding baby-sitting wherever you plan to be.</p> <p>According to Care.com, vacation baby sitters are paid an average rate of $12.50 per hour. The website makes it possible to browse options in your destination, read over caregiver qualifications, and ask questions.</p> <p>Ideally, you'll find someone who can baby-sit while you enjoy a dinner out, a daylong snorkeling trip, or a special event. You can even book a travel nanny for several days or nights during your vacation.</p> <p>When Mom and Dad are exhausted, it's more difficult to have the vacation of a lifetime. With child-care included, on the other hand, everyone gets the break they need.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-ways-to-find-child-care-while-traveling&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%2520Ways%2520to%2520Find%2520Child%2520Care%2520While%2520Traveling.jpg&amp;description=6%20Ways%20to%20Find%20Child%20Care%20While%20Traveling"></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%20Ways%20to%20Find%20Child%20Care%20While%20Traveling.jpg" alt="6 Ways to Find Child Care While Traveling" 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/6-ways-to-find-child-care-while-traveling">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/yes-affordable-family-travel-is-possible">Yes, Affordable Family Travel Is Possible</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/20-ways-to-make-family-camping-easy">20 Ways to Make Family Camping Easy</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-handle-world-travel-with-your-family">How to Travel Internationally With Your Kids</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-ways-to-save-on-a-european-getaway-with-kids">7 Ways to Save on a European Getaway With Kids</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Travel affordable travel child-care family travel family vacation travel tips traveling with kids Thu, 14 Jun 2018 08:30:42 +0000 Holly Johnson 2148579 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Common Travel Myths That People Need to Stop Believing http://www.wisebread.com/7-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/female_tourist_looking_in_venice_italy.jpg" alt="Female tourist looking in Venice, Italy" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Many people hold misconceptions about travel that are born out of rumors, misinformation, and a fear of the unknown. Most imply that you need to be rich, that only certain privileged people can travel, and that common life situations make it impossible to see the world. But safe and affordable travel is actually possible. Here are seven common travel myths that are flat-out wrong.</p> <h2>1. Traveling is too expensive</h2> <p>There's no doubt about it, traveling can absolutely be expensive. But that doesn't mean it <em>has </em>to be. If you're booking luxury cruises and five-star hotels every time you go on vacation, then yes, you'll need lots of cash. There are endless ways to make traveling easier on your budget, though, and all while enjoying a fantastic standard of living.</p> <p><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-wisely-choose-your-next-travel-destination?ref=internal" target="_blank">Choosing the right destinations</a> is key, and outside of the U.S., many places are far cheaper on everything from food to accommodation. You can use travel rewards credit cards to save hundreds of dollars per year and get free travel perks. And <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-timing-is-everything-when-saving-money-on-travel?ref=internal" target="_blank">timing your trip</a> is another way to keep costs down, simply by traveling outside of peak seasons.</p> <h2>2. Travel credit cards are bad for your finances</h2> <p>Credit cards are only as dangerous as the person wielding them, so it's completely inaccurate to assume that the cards themselves are dangerous for your finances. When used correctly, <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">travel rewards cards</a> can actually be of huge benefit for travelers. They&rsquo;re a great way to earn free bonuses just for doing your everyday spending, and savvy travelers use them to score everything from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-tools-that-help-you-find-free-award-flights?ref=internal" target="_blank">free flights</a> to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-credit-card-should-you-use-to-get-free-hotel-stays?ref=internal" target="_blank">free hotel stays</a>.</p> <p>Rewards credit cards are most suitable for people who are already debt-free and able to pay off their balance each month. It's also important not to increase your spending in order to gather rewards, as this will rarely make financial sense.</p> <h2>3. Couchsurfing is unsafe</h2> <p>Couchsurfing sometimes gets a bad rap, and people tend to focus on the few horror stories that appear in the news. The reality is that most people have a fantastic experience when couchsurfing, and trouble with hosts or guests is extremely rare. <a href="https://hippie-inheels.com/tips-for-safe-couchsurfing/" target="_blank">Travel blogger Rachel Jones</a> is a fan of couchsurfing, and has found that it gives her a more immersive local experience. She has even made long-lasting friendships through it. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/13-ways-to-get-free-travel-accommodations?ref=seealso" target="_blank">13 Ways to Get Free Travel Accommodations</a>)</p> <p>There are precautionary steps you should take as a guest when looking for a couchsurfing opportunity that is right for you. First, read the host profiles carefully, particularly the reviews, as these will give you an insight into the person you'll be staying with. Second, always give a friend or family member the address you're heading to before you go, and arrange to check in with them throughout your stay. Finally, don't be afraid to walk away. If alarm bells ring in your head, listen to your instincts and leave.</p> <h2>4. Traveling with kids is a nightmare</h2> <p>Traveling with kids can be difficult, and it's certainly more complicated than traveling alone. But that doesn't mean that it should stop you from doing it. There are plenty of families successfully navigating the world with multiple kids in tow, and absolutely loving the experience.</p> <p>Some destinations are more child-friendly than others, so it pays to do your research before choosing. It will also take a bit more planning to find suitable accommodations and ensure you have packed everything you need to make the trip enjoyable for everyone. But there are lots of useful resources filled with great information to help you out. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-handle-world-travel-with-your-family?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Handle World Travel With Your Family</a>)</p> <h2>5. Traveling solo is too dangerous for women</h2> <p>There's an entire genre of travel blogging that has grown out of the desire to crush the belief that solo travel is inherently dangerous for women. Not only is it outdated and sexist, but it's also incorrect. There are female solo travelers making their way to every corner of the globe, safely and expertly.</p> <p>That's not to say that there aren't precautions that solo female travelers should take to keep themselves safe. But they're exactly the same ones that apply to any kind of solo traveler, regardless of gender. Stay alert, do your research, don&rsquo;t tell strangers where you&rsquo;re staying, do let close friends and family know where you&rsquo;re going, and consider joining a tour group if you&rsquo;re uncomfortable on your own. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-unexpected-benefits-of-solo-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Unexpected Benefits of Solo Travel</a>)</p> <h2>6. You can't work overseas</h2> <p>While it's not as simple as packing up, boarding a flight, and finding a suitable position in your chosen country, it's not impossible to work overseas. For 18&ndash;30-year-olds, there are working holiday visas that the U.S. government has set up with New Zealand, Ireland, South Korea, Singapore, and Australia that allow you to work overseas for up to two years with relatively few restrictions.</p> <p>If you don't qualify for one of those, then you can still work overseas as long as you have the correct visa. You should also be aware of U.S. tax regulations, meaning you'll likely still have to file returns. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-tax-myths-that-can-be-costly-for-expats?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Tax Myths That Can Be Costly for Expats</a>)</p> <h2>7. You have to have enough money for your whole trip before you leave</h2> <p>If you're planning on traveling for a long period of time, it can be daunting to save up the exact amount of money you need to cover your whole journey. But the truth is, you don't <em>have</em> to. It's entirely possible to set off with a limited amount of cash and earn money as you make your way around the world.</p> <p>There are countless ways to make money while you travel that are open to anyone, and if you have some skills that enable you to work remotely, then even better. From hospitality work to web design, there are lots of occupations you can do from anywhere in the world. Just make sure you've saved enough to get yourself started before hitting the road. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-ways-to-make-money-while-you-travel?ref=seealso" target="_blank">15 Ways to Make Money While You Travel</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%2520Common%2520Travel%2520Myths%2520That%2520People%2520Need%2520to%2520Stop%2520Believing.jpg&amp;description=7%20Common%20Travel%20Myths%20That%20People%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Believing"></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%20Common%20Travel%20Myths%20That%20People%20Need%20to%20Stop%20Believing.jpg" alt="7 Common Travel Myths That People Need to Stop Believing" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing">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-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think">4 Affordable Destinations That Are Safer Than You Think</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-places-to-travel-where-the-dollar-is-still-strong">8 Places to Travel Where the Dollar Is Still Strong</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/stay-secure-in-your-hotel-with-this-8-point-safety-check">Stay Secure in Your Hotel With This 8-Point Safety Check</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-get-to-machu-picchu-and-back-for-30">How to Get to Machu Picchu and Back for $30</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Travel affordable travel common misconceptions travel budget travel myths travel safety travel tips Wed, 06 Jun 2018 08:30:29 +0000 Nick Wharton 2146780 at http://www.wisebread.com My 5 Favorite Budget Summer Destinations for 2018 http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-favorite-budget-summer-destinations-for-2018 <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/my-5-favorite-budget-summer-destinations-for-2018" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/st_georges_grenada.jpg" alt="St. George&#039;s, Grenada" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Having traveled the world full-time for the past decade, I've been lucky enough to have seen some incredible destinations. I've also learned a thing or two about how to make the most of my budget while visiting them.</p> <p>Budget travel isn't about always seeking the cheapest option. For me, it's more about getting the most for my money, whether that be accommodation, activities, or an evening out. Some destinations are downright cheap, while others provide unbeatable value for the kind of unique experience you can have there.</p> <p>When it comes to getting a good deal, timing counts for a lot, as prices in most popular destinations fluctuate wildly depending on what time of year you visit. Even though summer can be the worst time financially to visit most places, for others, it's going to provide you with the best opportunity to keep your costs down. Here are my favorite budget summer destinations for 2018. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-of-the-safest-countries-to-visit-in-2018?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 of the Safest Countries to Visit in 2018</a>)</p> <h2>1. Grenada</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/alhambra_granada_spain.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Out of the 10 years that I've been traveling the world, two of them have been spent living in Grenada. Somehow I keep being pulled back to this tiny island in the West Indies. It's a hugely popular destination for cruise ships stopping to tour some of the nearby islands, but there's far more here to discover than could possibly be achieved in a few hours. From the stunning beaches and lush green landscapes, to the delicious food and lively nightlife, I can't get enough of this place. It's amazing that, despite its small size (the island is just 21 miles long), there are so many things to do in Grenada.</p> <p>As with the rest of the Caribbean, late summer is actually a slow period with very few visitors due to it being the wet season. However, a little known secret is that Grenada lies just outside of the hurricane belt, meaning it tends not to get hit directly by the worst category five storms. You can expect around an hour of torrential rain each day, but other than that, it's blue skies and sunshine all the way. The only difference is, you have fewer tourists to share it with.</p> <p>The Caribbean isn't your quintessential budget destination, and Grenada doesn't necessarily buck the trend in that respect, with some activities and daily costs on the expensive side. But it is possible to visit without draining your bank account by eating at locally run food outlets, and staying away from high-end resorts. I've found listings for rooms in mid-range hotels available for as little as $100 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-save-on-hotel-stays?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Simple Ways to Save on Hotel Stays</a>)</p> <h2>2. Colombia</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/la_piedra_del_penol_medellin_colombia_0.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Just the mention of name Colombia strikes fear into the hearts of many people, thanks to its long association with the brutal drug trafficking cartels and guerrilla insurgencies that once brought the country to its knees. But Colombia has been working hard over the last couple of decades to shed that image, and it's finally beginning to see the results of all of that effort. In general, Colombia is now an extremely safe place to visit and it's cleaned up its act on multiple fronts, from toppling the most powerful drug cartels, to signing a peace deal with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) in 2016. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Affordable Destinations That Are Safer Than You Think</a>)</p> <p>I recently fell in love with this country. Highlights include the many beautiful landscapes that encompass modern cities like Medellin and Bogota, the Caribbean coastline in popular destinations such as the colorful Cartagena, and swathes of untouched rainforest including a section of the Amazon.</p> <p>The climate varies throughout Colombia depending on where you are, but it's always possible to enjoy sunshine and reasonable temperatures regardless of the time of year. Visiting outside of the peak months (between December and February) will mean cheaper prices and fewer crowds. If you can, skip the wet season in May, June, and July, and head there in late summer.</p> <p>Round-trip flights to Medellin are available for around $300&ndash;$400 in the summer months with Miami, Orlando, and Fort Lauderdale being the cheapest departure destinations. For less than $70 per night I've found mid-range rooms on Booking.com, with high-end rooms available for a little over $100 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a>)</p> <h2>3. Thailand</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/pileh_lagoon_in_ko_phi_phi_island.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Thailand's tourist numbers have continued to soar as it has advanced from being a backpacker's haven into a full-blown behemoth of a tourist destination. In 2017, it attracted over 35 million travelers, and one of the reasons behind this success is that it caters to everyone, from those wanting five-star luxury to the more budget-conscious. It's one of only a few places that I've visited on numerous occasions, and somewhere I love each time I go, knowing I can live extremely well without spending a fortune.</p> <p>July to October isn't the most popular time to visit because it's the rainy season, but coming at this time of year actually has its advantages. It's relatively easy to plan around the rain, and temperatures are still warm and welcoming. The lower visitor numbers also enable you to find cheaper prices on everything from hotel rooms to meals out, and there are far fewer crowds at even the biggest attractions.</p> <p>In many ways, Thailand is the ultimate budget destination because basic living costs are extremely low, and even luxurious touches like spa days or cocktails in rooftop bars remain cheap. You can even enjoy a three-course meal for two at a mid-range restaurant for $20, so good living is guaranteed even on a budget.</p> <p>Flights to Thailand's capital Bangkok from Los Angeles with a stop are around $500 in summer. A room in a mid-level hotel will set you back around $60 per night with plenty of options available on Booking.com. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-countries-where-you-can-travel-on-30-a-day-or-less?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Countries Where You Can Travel on $30 a Day or Less</a>)</p> <h2>4. Bulgaria</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/seven_rila_lakes_bulgaria.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>When the rest of Europe is flooded with tourists and hotel prices begin to soar during the summer months, Bulgaria remains delightfully affordable. This is still the country's busiest season; hotels and tours do book up, so it's worth planning ahead. But Bulgaria offers such excellent value that even in peak season you can travel on less than $50 a day. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-european-cities-you-can-visit-for-50-a-day?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 European Cities You Can Visit for $50 a Day</a>)</p> <p>The ancient city of Sofia has plenty to offer visitors. The city's relics give visitors a glimpse at over 2,000 years of history, and the 1.2 million residents provide a thriving metropolis complete with a thumping nightlife, a great restaurant scene, and plenty of accommodation options.</p> <p>For a bit of nature, head out to the Seven Rila Lakes area where there are countless hiking trails. The best time to visit this part of Bulgaria is in the middle of summer (July and August), when high temperatures hover around 75 degrees.</p> <p>No trip to Bulgaria would be complete without a visit to Plovdiv, the nation's second largest city and arguably its most charming. Here you can head out to the stunning vineyards that pepper the surrounding landscapes, enjoy summertime wine festivals and concerts, and get lost in the labyrinth of ancient cobblestone streets. There are so many things to do in Plovdiv that you may find yourself extending your visit.</p> <h2>5. South Africa</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/hermanus_south_africa.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>South Africa is enjoyable at any time of the year. And while flights there are not cheap (round-trip airfare between New York and Cape Town starts at around $1,200 in July), once you get there, it's one of the cheapest destinations to visit thanks to a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-places-to-travel-where-the-dollar-is-still-strong?ref=internal" target="_blank">strong U.S. dollar</a>.</p> <p>Peak tourist season in this southern hemisphere nation tends to be during the summer months of December to March. June through August in South Africa is the dry season and winter. Prices are slightly lower during this period, but there's no shortage of things to do.</p> <p>My wife and I visited in June and July, and while the Southern Cape region was a bit chilly, we had spectacular weather. June is the start of the whale watching season along the Cape south coast. This is when southern right whales can be best viewed by land from Hermanus as they come close to the rocky shorelines to give birth. When we were there, we were just a few hundred feet away from dozens of breaching whales and baby calves.</p> <p>The drier climate means that July and August are the best months for viewing wildlife in South Africa's many national parks as they tend to congregate around diminishing waterholes.</p> <p>September is the start of spring in South Africa. This is the time when flowers start to bloom across the Western and Northern Cape. And Namaqualand in the Northern Cape becomes carpeted in colorful flowers.</p> <p>I recommend renting a car in South Africa and driving up and down the coast. There's really no better way to explore this naturally blessed nation!</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fmy-5-favorite-budget-summer-destinations-for-2018&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FMy%25205%2520Favorite%2520Budget%2520Summer%2520Destinations%2520for%25202018.jpg&amp;description=My%205%20Favorite%20Budget%20Summer%20Destinations%20for%202018"></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/My%205%20Favorite%20Budget%20Summer%20Destinations%20for%202018.jpg" alt="My 5 Favorite Budget Summer Destinations for 2018" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/my-5-favorite-budget-summer-destinations-for-2018">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-exciting-ways-to-see-the-country-this-summer">8 Exciting Ways to See the Country This Summer</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/12-cool-travel-items-for-your-summer-vacation">12 Cool Travel Items for Your Summer 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/7-ways-using-credit-can-help-you-enjoy-a-cheaper-safer-summer-vacation">7 Ways Using Credit Can Help You Enjoy a Cheaper, Safer Summer Vacation</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/6-ways-to-travel-on-a-budget-while-in-expensive-countries">6 Ways to Travel On a Budget While in Expensive Countries</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel 2018 travel affordable travel budget travel summer travel summer vacation travel tips Wed, 23 May 2018 08:30:39 +0000 Nick Wharton 2142426 at http://www.wisebread.com How to Travel Internationally With Your Kids http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-handle-world-travel-with-your-family <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-to-handle-world-travel-with-your-family" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/brothers_and_sister_sightseeing_in_pisa.jpg" alt="Brothers and sister sightseeing in Pisa" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Making the decision to go on a family vacation can be kind of terrifying, especially if it's your first time. Everything we're told about raising children revolves around the importance of routine and stability &mdash; two things you're likely to lose on a travel day.</p> <p>It can be challenging just trying to get the kids off to school in the morning, let alone taking them to a new country on a one-week vacation. Travel days will likely be your biggest challenge because once you arrive at your hotel or resort, you can mostly relax and enjoy. But you can mitigate most of the stress and chaos of long travel days by packing the right items and following a few simple rules.<span style="font-size: 13px;">&nbsp;(See also: </span><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-wisely-choose-your-next-travel-destination?ref=seealso" target="_blank" style="font-size: 13px;">How to Wisely Choose Your Next Travel Destination</a><span style="font-size: 13px;">)</span></p> <h2>1. Choose the right destinations</h2> <p>The right destinations for you and your family will depend on a lot of factors, as there's no one-size-fits-all destination. While you don't need to rule out certain countries because you're traveling with kids, you do need to take your children's ages into consideration to find locations that will be the most suitable for kids.</p> <p>Daily adventures like long hikes may be more difficult with younger children, whereas many teenagers will need things to keep them stimulated. A good way to ensure everyone is happy is to get them involved in the decision-making. Older kids can do their own research on the internet, while younger children can be given a number of options to choose from after explaining what each has to offer. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-affordable-vacations-to-please-every-age-group?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Affordable Vacations to Please Every Age Group</a>)</p> <h2>2. Book family-friendly accommodations</h2> <p>Booking the right accommodation is vital to making traveling the world with your family a success. Those with kids, particularly younger ones, will attest that a good night's sleep can mean the difference between a fun day and a nightmare. Your options are obviously more limited than when you're solo traveling or with friends, with many hostels, guesthouses, and even some hotels operating a no-children policy.</p> <p>Your best options are to stay in hotel suites, or to rent full apartments through sites like Airbnb. Privacy is a must, and it's great to have your own space to relax in, and for the kids to have room to play and run around. You can narrow the hotel options on search engines by using the sort function to filter by family-friendly properties. Airbnb also enables you to find entire houses or apartments that are family-friendly. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-hotel-booking-websites-can-save-you-money-and-headaches?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How Hotel Booking Websites Can Save You Money</a>)</p> <h2>3. Pack light</h2> <p>What to pack is often at the forefront of parents' minds when they make the decision to travel with their family. Just the thought of trying to condense all of the gear &mdash; particularly associated with younger children &mdash; down to a manageable amount can be daunting. Things like strollers, car seats, and carriers all take up huge amounts of space, and that's before toys, clothes, and everything else they might need. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-families-can-travel-like-minimalists?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Ways Families Can Travel Like Minimalists</a>)</p> <p>Packing as light as possible will make moving around far easier, and will potentially save your family lots of money in excess baggage fees. As soon as your kids are old enough to carry a backpack or wheel a suitcase, it's a good idea to get them involved in the packing stage as well. They'll soon come to appreciate the importance of packing light, and will enjoy being involved in the process.</p> <p>Generally, anything that's an absolute necessity for children will be available pretty much anywhere you go, but here are a few things that you can pack to ensure that your travel day will run as smoothly as possible.</p> <h3>Baby wipes</h3> <p>There are a lot of germs on travel days and your little ones are going to be more susceptible to catching something on the road. Bring a few sanitizer or baby wipes and wipe down airplane seats, seat belts, handles and any surfaces your children may touch during the trip.</p> <h3>Comfort toy</h3> <p>Most children have some kind of toy, blanket, or pacifier that calms them down. Bring it! These simple items can be life savers.</p> <h3>Tablet</h3> <p>Load it up with all of your kid's favorite music, movies, and TV shows and let them play and watch to their heart's content. Keep in mind that while on buses and in cars, you may want to limit exposure as it can lead to motion sickness.</p> <h3>Child-sized luggage</h3> <p>Kids like to feel like adults from time to time, and by having their own carry-on luggage or backpack, not only will they feel like Mom and Dad, but they'll be able to carry some of their own things and access them when they feel like it.</p> <h3>Headphones</h3> <p>Even if you don't have a tablet or smartphone for your kids, you can usually plug in the headphones and let them watch the entertainment provided on planes and buses.</p> <h3>Lots of water</h3> <p>This is something you don't want to run out of. Bring plenty of water and have your kids carry their own bottle, either clipped to their person or onto their luggage.</p> <h3>Trash bags</h3> <p>With wet wipes, snacks, water bottles, and tissue, you're likely to have a lot of trash on travel days. Bring bags to easily store it all until you can ditch it in a proper trash bin.</p> <h3>Healthy snacks</h3> <p>Loading your kids up on sugar on travel days is just asking for trouble. Instead, pack low-sugar, healthy snacks like crackers, nuts, cheese sticks, Cheerios, and pretzels.</p> <h3>Sunscreen</h3> <p>Even if you're planning to be in the airport for most of your travel day, you never know if you'll be by the bus window on the tarmac or waiting in line to board the plane. Bring lots of sunscreen and keep everyone from getting burned. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-sunscreens?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The 5 Best Sunscreens</a>)</p> <h3>Camera</h3> <p>Keep your camera somewhere that you can easily grab it at a moment's notice. Funny things happen on travel days and it's always adorable to take a photograph of your kid boarding a plane or looking out the plane window.</p> <h2>4. Slow it down</h2> <p>Though it's completely possible to move from place to place relatively quickly with a family, if you have the luxury of an extended vacation, it's a much better idea to take it slowly and spend a good amount of time in each destination. This is important for practical reasons, like not having the hassle of unpacking and repacking every few days, but it will also allow you to create routines and provide a level of stability in each place.</p> <p>Slow travel will allow you the option of booking longer-term accommodation, which is likely to bring the cost down. Rather than staying in hotel suites, you'll be able to book houses or apartments via sites like Airbnb, where hosts regularly offer long-stay discounts, or directly with local landlords.</p> <p>Moving quickly can begin to feel like a whirlwind of activity and leave no time for your children to build attachments to places. In contrast, spending a few weeks or months in one spot will allow your kids to get familiar with the people and places at the location and give them a deeper connection. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/savor-your-trip-and-save-big-with-these-5-slow-travel-tips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Savor Your Trip and Save Big With These 5 Slow Travel Tips</a>)</p> <h2>5. Plan ahead when flying with babies</h2> <p>Generally, you won't pay for airline tickets for children under two years of age who sit in your lap, at least on domestic flights. However, you do still have to inform the airline when booking that you're traveling with a small child. You may also want to reserve a baby cot or bassinet with the airline in advance, or arrive early for those that operate on a first come, first served basis. It's generally free, but check with each airline for their individual policies.</p> <h2>6. Sign the kids up for frequent flyer miles</h2> <p>On many airlines, frequent flyer programs have no age minimum, meaning kids can earn points, as well as adults. They will have to have their own frequent flyer account in order to start accumulating the points, but that's just a matter of filling out a simple form. Pooling family members' points can be a quick way to multiply your earnings. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-frequent-flyer-miles?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Everything You Need to Know About Frequent Flyer Miles</a>)</p> <h2>7. Get a travel-friendly stroller</h2> <p>Nothing is more annoying than fumbling around with a bulky stroller while trying to check into a flight. You may want to consider an fold-up umbrella-style stroller or a lightweight, portable travel stroller. There are <a href="https://amzn.to/2K6UkQ7" target="_blank">plenty on Amazon</a> to choose from, and most stores that carry strollers will also carry umbrella strollers and other lighter-weight options.</p> <h2>8. Make sure kids sit middle or window</h2> <p>The aisle seat is a surprisingly dangerous place for little ones. With heavy metal carts and people whizzing by, I've seen many a tiny finger squished by an unsuspecting passenger, who feels awful afterward.</p> <p>To avoid a lot of tears and potentially a broken finger, always try to seat your little ones in away from the aisle.</p> <h2>9. Have a &quot;what if I get lost?&quot; plan</h2> <p>This one seems obvious, but in the rush and chaos of getting everyone to the airport on time, many parents forget to form an emergency plan with their children on travel days. Whenever you arrive in a new place, let your child know which people are security or police and who to go to in the event of splitting up.</p> <p>Also, choose a safe and secure meeting point that you can all head to if for some reason you can't find one another. If your kids are a little older, make sure everyone has their phone volume on loud and set to vibrate so that you can call each other if anyone gets lost.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <div align="center"> <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%20Handle%20World%20Travel%20With%20Your%20Family.jpg" alt="How to Handle World Travel With Your Family" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-handle-world-travel-with-your-family">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-money-lessons-your-kids-can-learn-while-they-travel">10 Money Lessons Your Kids Can Learn While They Travel</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/yes-affordable-family-travel-is-possible">Yes, Affordable Family Travel Is Possible</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-ways-to-find-child-care-while-traveling">6 Ways to Find Child Care While Traveling</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/20-ways-to-make-family-camping-easy">20 Ways to Make Family Camping Easy</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-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive">5 Budget Destinations Where You Can Learn to Scuba Dive</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Family Travel affordable travel family travel family vacation international travel travel tips travel with children travel with kids Tue, 15 May 2018 08:30:25 +0000 Nick Wharton 2140373 at http://www.wisebread.com 8 Affordable U.S. Destinations for a Weekend Getaway http://www.wisebread.com/8-affordable-us-destinations-for-a-weekend-getaway <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-affordable-us-destinations-for-a-weekend-getaway" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/vineyard_willamette_valley_or.jpg" alt="Vineyard, Willamette Valley, OR" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Sure, the big-ticket, monthlong trips to Europe and Asia get all the glory, and for good reason. But did you know there are plenty of places you can take an awesome vacation right here within the U.S. at a fraction of the price? After all, spending hours and hours on a cramped plane is no one's idea of a good time, especially when you can take a fun road trip somewhere interesting over a long weekend.</p> <p>Whether you're looking for a family-friendly getaway or a romantic weekend escape, these affordable destinations will recharge your batteries without draining your wallet. (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>1. North Conway, New Hampshire</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/north_conway_usa_0.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Even though North Conway has been rated as the most affordable ski town in the U.S. by TripAdvisor, there are plenty of things to do around here during any season. Take a no-cost hike during spring to see flowering trees, and waterfalls rushing with melted snow from the area's steep mountains. In the autumn, enjoy the blazing gold and red hues of the New England leaves on foot or by car.</p> <p>Or hop aboard one of the scenic train rides you can take from here on the Notch or Valley trains, starting at $18. About an hour from North Conway, you can also ride the world's first mountain-scaling cog train, which takes you straight to the top of Mount Washington, the tallest peak east of the Mississippi.</p> <p>Hotel rooms start at around $110 per night in June, and there are also several campgrounds and hostels available. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-essential-money-saving-items-to-take-on-a-camping-road-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Essential Money-Saving Items to Take on a Camping Road Trip</a>)</p> <h2>2. Willamette Valley, Oregon</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/vineyard_willamette_valley_or.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If a relaxing and romantic weekend in the northwest is your style, the Willamette Valley wine country might be just for you. This 150-mile-long region stretching from Eugene to Portland is famous for its vineyards, wineries, and breweries (there are over 150 to choose from), and local farm-to-table cuisine. Most wineries and breweries offer tastings, some for less than $10. And if you get bored from all the wine, beer, and fresh produce, you can always check out Portland.</p> <p>The Valley features plenty of fun and eclectic budget lodging options, such as The Vintages Trailer Resort, which offers lodging at prices as low as $102 per night in June. You can also rent a private home on Airbnb for under $100 per night. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-travel-hacks-for-an-affordable-summer-road-trip?ref=seealso" target="_blank">7 Travel Hacks for an Affordable Road Trip</a>)</p> <h2>3. Louisville, Kentucky</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/churchill_downs_entrance.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Home of the Kentucky Derby, Louisville is also a town steeped in history, bourbon, and fun. Be sure to check out the historic Brown Hotel to get a bite of the famous &quot;Hot Brown&quot; open-faced sandwich.</p> <p>There are also plenty of free parks to visit, as well as numerous museums celebrating science, history, bourbon, art, Muhammad Ali, and sports. For a great discount on museums, check out Museum Row's Main Ticket, which offers access to seven of Louisville's top museums for $32 per person. If drinking liquor is more your style, many bourbon distilleries offer tastings and tours starting at around $20.</p> <p>Accommodations are reasonable, too. Three-star hotel rooms start at around $100 per night in June.</p> <h2>4. Rapid City, South Dakota</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/mount_rushmore_national_monument.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Located right next door to the famed Mount Rushmore, Rapid City's been a staple of family road trips for decades. But there's way more to do here than just see the presidents' faces carved on the mountain. Other free attractions include the Chapel in the Hills, a life-size replica of the ancient Norwegian Borgund Stavkirke church; scenic byways; and numerous public parks full of storybook characters, giant dinosaur replicas, and water attractions.</p> <p>You can easily find a hotel room in Rapid City in the $130 per night range, and as well as a few camping options from $39 per night.</p> <h2>5. Cleveland, Ohio</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/cuyahoga_valley_national_park.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>You might not think of Cleveland as a world-class destination, but think again. There are tons of free things to check out, like nearby Cuyahoga National Park, the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland's free money museum, and the free Cleveland Museum of Art, which houses a permanent collection of works by Monet, Picasso, and van Gogh. You can even ride a trolley around downtown for free.</p> <p>If you want to spring for some paid (but still cheap) adventures, check out the Cleveland Zoo ($14.95 per person), the Great Lakes Science Center ($16.95 per person), or the world-famous Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ($23 per person if purchased in advance).</p> <p>Lodging here is also very affordable. You can find three-star hotel rooms starting at about $60 in June.</p> <h2>6. Colorado Springs, Colorado</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/garden_of_the_gods_and_skyline_at_dusk.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you've always wanted to visit scenic Colorado but don't think you can afford the glitzy mountain ski towns, check out Colorado Springs instead. This city is tucked right at the base of the Rockies and offers many free activities, like the aptly-named Garden of the Gods and beautiful scenic drives (one of which goes all the way to the top of Pikes Peak, one of Colorado's famed &quot;fourteeners&quot; &mdash; mountains exceeding 14,000 feet in height).</p> <p>You can also enjoy the sunny Colorado weather on the patio of one of the 32 local breweries, dive into history at one of the city's two castles ($9 or $10 per person, depending on which castle you choose), or visit the nearby ancient Anasazi cliff dwellings ($10 per person).</p> <p>Once you tire yourself out from all that fresh air and activity, it's easy to find affordable accommodations here for under $150 per night.</p> <h2>7. New Iberia, Louisiana</h2> <p>Outdoor enthusiasts and mystery fans alike will find reasons to like this small town at the seat of Iberia Parish in southern Louisiana. You can walk through Spanish moss-covered forests and soak in the unique Cajun culture that inspired the mystery novels of David Lee Burke, creator of the fictional detective Dave Robicheaux.</p> <p>But you don't have to have read the books to enjoy the area's fishing and bayou tours. Waterways make up nearly half of the parish &mdash; the Louisiana equivalent of a county. Or mosey through the area's plentiful gardens and parks; the town and surrounding areas are drenched in color during spring. Enjoy some local gumbo or shrimp étouffée to complete the experience.</p> <p>Best of all, lodging in New Iberia is extremely cheap, starting at just $63 per night. If camping's more your style, you can stay in the KOC Kampground for as little as $30 a night.</p> <h2>8. Park City, Utah</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sunrise_above_park_city_mountain_resort.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If the great outdoors and history are your passions, then you need to check out Park City. This beautiful town surrounded by the Wasatch Mountain Range started out in the 1860s as a silver mining town. Later it became home to two ski resorts that hosted events during the 2002 Winter Olympics. That legacy is preserved at the Utah Olympic Park, which offers two free museums, along with paid adventure courses and a drop tower ($45 for adults and $30 for kids). You can also tour the facility ($12 for adults, and $7 for kids).</p> <p>Once you've had your fill of adventures, peruse the historic district in downtown Park City. The town offers free public transportation, and the downtown area is full of one-of-a-kind businesses, thanks to its anti-chain policy (no Starbucks here!). Lodging starts at $112 per night.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=%3Ch2%20style%3D%22text-align%3A%20center%3B%22%3ELike%20this%20article%3F%20Pin%20it!%3C%2Fh2%3E%3Cdiv%20align%3D%22center%22%3E%3C%2Fdiv%3E&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%2520Affordable%2520U.S.%2520Destinations%2520for%2520a%2520Weekend%2520Getaway.jpg&amp;description=8%20Affordable%20U.S.%20Destinations%20for%20a%20Weekend%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/u5180/8%20Affordable%20U.S.%20Destinations%20for%20a%20Weekend%20Getaway.jpg" alt="8 Affordable U.S. Destinations for a Weekend 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/lindsay-vansomeren">Lindsay VanSomeren</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-affordable-us-destinations-for-a-weekend-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-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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas">6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas</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-save-big-on-last-minute-travel">How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel</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/5-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive">5 Budget Destinations Where You Can Learn to Scuba Dive</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-overwater-bungalows-you-can-book-with-rewards-points">5 Overwater Bungalows You Can Book With Rewards Points</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel holiday weekend long weekend road trip travel tips u.s. destinations Thu, 03 May 2018 08:30:08 +0000 Lindsay VanSomeren 2134246 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Laid-Back Girls' Trip Destinations Anyone Can Afford http://www.wisebread.com/5-laid-back-girls-trip-destinations-anyone-can-afford <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-laid-back-girls-trip-destinations-anyone-can-afford" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/happy_girlfriends_on_viewpoint.jpg" alt="Happy girlfriends on viewpoint" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There are a million and one reasons a girls-only trip might be exactly what you need. Maybe you're planning a bachelorette party and need a few days to unwind before the big day. Or perhaps a weekend getaway has been on the horizon for years but you've never found the time. Either way, life is too short to never get away with your female friends.</p> <p>Unfortunately, planning a trip with multiple guests isn't always easy &mdash; especially when your guest list is past the age of all-nighters fueled by endless tequila shots. For many, the insane appeal of the Las Vegas party scene isn't what it used to be. Plus, it's highly possible you're all working with different travel budgets and diverse ideas of what is considered &quot;affordable.&quot;</p> <p>If you're looking for a fun girls' trip that's laid-back, interesting, and likely at a price point everyone in your squad can afford, consider these five possibilities that are both affordable and fun.</p> <h2>1. Charleston, South Carolina</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/folly_beach_pier_charleston.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Thanks to its southern charm and intact historic core, Charleston is one of the most interesting beach towns in the U.S. Stroll down cobblestone streets or take a horse-drawn carriage tour of the city's historic treasures. Charleston's well-preserved buildings represent a wide variety of architectural styles, from Victorian to Art Deco. Round out your history lesson with a plantation tour and a visit to Fort Sumter, a sea fort well known for its role in two battles of the American Civil War.</p> <p>When you tire of the city, head to a nearby beach. Folly Beach, a hangout for surfers and bohemians, is great whether you want to people-watch or participate. Surf novices can get a taste of the action with private lessons or small group classes from Shaka Surf School. For those more in the know, the shop hosts &quot;Wemoon&quot; surf and beach yoga classes on Saturday mornings for $90.</p> <p>For a medium-sized city, Charleston is surprisingly cheap to fly to. Nonstop flights from Chicago start at around $225 in July, for example. Hotels in the historic district start at around $115 per night in July for double occupancy.</p> <h2>2. Tulum, Mexico</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/el_castillo_tulum_mexico_0.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Tulum, Mexico is only an hour-and-a-half from the Cancun airport, but it might as well be a world away from the spring break party scene in the Cancun Hotel Zone. While Cancun is happening 24/7, Tulum puts off much more of a laid-back beachy vibe.</p> <p>If you're up for some serious chill, Tulum is the perfect destination to relax on a beach with a book and a Corona all day. You can also swim in one of the many nearby cenotes, natural swimming holes created by the collapse of limestone bedrock above. These freshwater Edens can be a refreshing break from the seawater, which can get warm in the summer.</p> <p>But the reason many people visit Tulum is to explore the ancient Mayan ruins set along a cliff over the azure sea below. Here, you can marvel at the ancient structures, wondering how they have continued to remain standing since the 13th century. Nearby Cobá contains more Mayan ruins, including a 137-foot pyramid you can climb.</p> <p>Best of all, Tulum is affordable. You can fly into Cancun International Airport round-trip from many U.S. cities for around $300. From there, you can take two connecting air-conditioned bus rides to Tulum, but it may be just as cost effective to get a private shuttle for your group or even rent a car. Finally, Tulum accommodations are surprisingly affordable with many three-star hotels and vacation rentals well under $100 a night.</p> <h2>3. Denver, Colorado</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/ouzel_lake_rocky_mountains.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Denver is a town that's all about the outdoors, but it's also got a thriving arts scene. By day, you can check out local hikes at Ouzel Falls in Rocky Mountain National Park, Bear Creek Trail at Lair o' the Bear Park, or Royal Arch Trail in Boulder's Chautauqua Park, for example.</p> <p>By night, dine at one of the city's trendiest restaurants in RINO (River North Art District). Afterward, take in the district's street art and experimental galleries, and pop in for a drink at one of the many local breweries or wineries.</p> <p>Or head to a performance. The Denver Theatre District is a 16-block area of downtown anchored by the Denver Center for the Performing Arts, where you'll find plays and musicals nearly every night of the week. In the mood for an outdoor concert? Head to the stunning Red Rocks Amphitheatre, just 10 miles west of Denver, which hosts concerts in just about every musical genre you can think of.</p> <p>Because Denver is a popular destination with a large airport, it's easy to get cheap flights here. Round-trip airfare between New York and Denver in June starts at $250, for instance. Accommodations are affordable, too. Hotels in the heart of downtown Denver start at just $160 per night in June. Or, you can share a larger place with more space for everyone via Airbnb, starting at around $70 per night depending on the size and location of your rental.</p> <h2>4. Napa Valley, California</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/vineyards_in_napa_valley_northern_california.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Napa Valley can be a very expensive place to visit, which is not surprising, considering it boasts truly spectacular views and some of the world's best wines. But there are actually some ways to experience Napa without breaking the budget.</p> <p>Getting here is probably the most pleasant surprise, price-wise. Nonstop flights from Chicago can be had for around $300 in June.</p> <p>Once you're here, you and your gal pals will want to sample local flavors from some of the region's many wineries. The only problem is, typical wine tours (or the Napa Valley Wine Train) will set you back hundreds of dollars per person. Instead, through Airbnb you can book a guided tour in a vintage VW bus for $125 per person plus wine tasting fees (tasting fees are usually $30-$40 each). Or if you want to work off the grapes in between tastings, Calistoga Bike Shop offers self-guided tours that include free wine tastings at the wineries starting at about $110 per person.</p> <p>If that still sounds too expensive, create your own map and Uber your way to each winery. Uber drivers are easy enough to find in Napa, and splitting the costs with a group is probably your cheapest way to get around. Finally, the $15 <a href="http://donapa.com/wine-tasting-card/" target="_blank">Taste Napa Downtown card</a> lets you visit 25 tasting rooms within walking distance of each other. You won't get to tour the wineries, but you'll be able to taste some amazing wines at a price you can't beat. Whatever you do, don't drink and drive.</p> <p>Napa hotels can be pricey, but if you stay 12 miles away in Fairfield, you can find doubles as low as $133 per room (which you could split) at the height of summer. You can even book whole homes on Airbnb that work out to less than $100 per person per night.</p> <p>You can even splurge for a bit of pampering at one of the day spas in Napa. A 60-minute Swedish massage at Greenhaus Day spa is $105 and facial treatments start at $60.</p> <h2>5. Sedona, Arizona</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/sedona_arizona.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If your group prefers the active outdoors, Sedona is hard to beat. It's home to some of the most beautiful hikes in the nation, with huge red rocks, fascinating geologic formations, and even three spiritual vortexes, if you're into that kind of thing. The easy and popular Broken Arrow Trail makes a good start, with its towering rock formations, Panorama Point, and a sinkhole named the Devil's Dining Room. If you want to get out in nature without as much work, you can also book a Pink Jeep Tour with a guide who will point out the giant red rock spires, landmarks, and best views for $110 per person.</p> <p>Sedona has a thriving spa scene as well to relax your sore muscles. Numerous spa resorts and day spas are located in the downtown area and beyond. Fortunately, spa services can be affordable; a 60-minute massage at Sedona's Namti Spa starts at just $74 and facials start at $79.</p> <p>A two-hour drive from Phoenix, Sedona is fairly easy and cheap to get to. Round-trip flights from Chicago to Phoenix start at $201 in September. Hotels can also be reasonable. Double rooms at a basic hotel start at around $100 per night in September.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-laid-back-girls-trip-destinations-anyone-can-afford&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Laid-Back%2520Girls%2527%2520Trip%2520Destinations%2520Anyone%2520Can%2520Afford.jpg&amp;description=5%20Laid-Back%20Girls'%20Trip%20Destinations%20Anyone%20Can%20Afford"></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%20Laid-Back%20Girls%27%20Trip%20Destinations%20Anyone%20Can%20Afford.jpg" alt="5 Laid-Back Girls' Trip Destinations Anyone Can Afford" 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/5-laid-back-girls-trip-destinations-anyone-can-afford">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-overwater-bungalows-you-can-book-with-rewards-points">5 Overwater Bungalows You Can Book With Rewards Points</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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny 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-ways-to-travel-on-a-budget-while-in-expensive-countries">6 Ways to Travel On a Budget While in Expensive Countries</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-big-on-last-minute-travel">How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel</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/6-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas">6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel girls trip laid back destinations relaxing vacation saving money travel destinations travel tips Wed, 02 May 2018 08:30:16 +0000 Holly Johnson 2136569 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Budget Destinations Where You Can Learn to Scuba Dive http://www.wisebread.com/5-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/scuba_diver_is_exploring_and_enjoying_coral_reef.jpg" alt="Scuba diver is exploring and enjoying Coral reef" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you love swimming in the sea and observing ocean wildlife, scuba diving is for you. Once you learn to scuba dive, you can explore the depths of the ocean and see much more than you would during your average snorkeling session.</p> <p>Unfortunately, you do have to get certified to enjoy this hobby safely. The world's biggest certification organization is the Professional Association of Dive Instructors (PADI). Once you get your PADI open water certification, you'll be able to dive at thousands of dive sites around the world.</p> <p>Getting certified involves mastering written coursework as well as skills taught in a swimming pool that are then built upon in the open water &mdash; the ocean, a lake, or even a quarry.</p> <p>In many U.S. cities, you can get certified by local instructors. That would certainly save you on travel costs, but it can be much more fun to learn to dive in a beautiful, warm destination.</p> <h2>Affordable learn-to-dive destinations</h2> <p>Why not combine your certification course with a vacation? It doesn't have to be expensive. In many locations, the PADI Open Water certification course is the same price or even cheaper than the same course in the U.S., and you can take it while staying in affordable accommodations.</p> <p>Of course, budget scuba destinations should also be affordable to get to. Getting certified on a budget won't work if you have to spend thousands on airfare, right? (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Get Free &mdash; or Almost Free &mdash; Airline Tickets</a>)</p> <p>Here are five destinations that fit the bill.</p> <h3>1. Utila, Honduras</h3> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/utila_island_bay_islands_honduras.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're aching for a scuba experience you'll never forget, check out the offerings in Utila, a Caribbean island that belongs to the Central American country of Honduras. Utila offers world-class diving at the southern tip of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System &mdash; a series of reefs that stretch 450 miles across the Caribbean. If you're in Utila in March or April, you even stand a good chance of seeing migrating whale sharks.</p> <p>Utila is often compared to nearby Roatan, which is also an island in Honduras, but Utila is even cheaper and better for diving. Some say it is the most affordable place in the world to dive.</p> <p>The Utila Dive Center offers an open water certification package for just $349. This package includes coursework, dives, and certification, along with five nights of very basic accommodation in the nearby Mango Inn. Besides the course, you also get two dives, and unlimited snorkeling and kayak use for free.</p> <p>Getting to Utila shouldn't be too expensive, either. You can fly from New York to Roatan for around $500 round-trip, for example. From Roatan, you can take the Utila Dream Ferry back and forth to the island for $30 each way.</p> <h3>2. Cozumel, Mexico</h3> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/green_sea_turtle_in_caribbean_sea.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Cozumel is another place to experience the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef System, including towering coral walls that host an incredible range of sea life. Most of the dive sites here are located in the Cozumel Reefs National Marine Park, a protected area that's home to some of the most beautiful coral reefs in the world.</p> <p>Cozumel sits off the coast of Mexico near the town of Playa del Carmen, and there are several ways to access it. You can fly directly into Cozumel (prices from Chicago start at around $550 round-trip) or into the busier airport at Cancun (flights cost around $260 and up). From Cancun, you can take another flight ($125 round-trip) or an $11 bus plus an $11 ferry to Cozumel.</p> <p>Cancun in particular can be inexpensive to get to, thanks to frequent sales from discount airlines like Southwest and JetBlue. You can even get there for free if you use frequent flyer miles from any of the major airlines. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-airlines-frequent-flyer-miles-have-the-best-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Which Airline's Frequent Flyer Miles Have the Most Value?</a>)</p> <p>When it comes to scuba operators in Cozumel, there are ample affordable options to consider. For example, Scuba Club Cozumel Dive Resort offers a five-day open water certification course for $375 plus tax, and a seven-night accommodation package for $699 plus tax.</p> <h3>3. Curacao</h3> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/mambo_beach_curacao.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Caribbean island of Curacao is known for its abundant wildlife, crystal clear waters, and scuba opportunities. Located just north of Venezuela, along with Aruba and Bonaire, Curacao is seldom hit with hurricanes or tropical storms. Many scuba dives are easily accessible from the shore.</p> <p>At Scuba Lodge Boutique Hotel &amp; Ocean Suites, guests can combine their love of travel with scuba certification at a price most can afford. A five-day PADI Open Water Diver course starts at $500, which you can combine with an on-property stay starting at $155 per night ($179 per night during peak season: late December through March). The certification class includes six dives, five of which take place at various dive sites around the island.</p> <p>The best part about Curacao is that, unlike many far-flung diving destinations, getting here is affordable. Nonstop, round-trip flights from New York start at around $200.</p> <h3>4. Bonaire</h3> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/trumpetfish_shadowing_a_stoplight_parrotfish.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Whether you're an experienced diver or someone just learning, Bonaire is an island you'll want to pay attention to. This Caribbean paradise claims 86 separate dive sites as part of its marine park, featuring more than 350 recorded fish species and 57 types of coral.</p> <p>Getting scuba certified in Bonaire can also be affordable, thanks to reasonable dive and lodging options on the island. The Divi Flamingo Beach Resort &amp; Casino is an easy proposition. You can earn your open water certification over five days for $495, and stay in a standard double room at the hotel for $148 per night.</p> <p>While there are many ways to reach Bonaire, most people fly to Curacao, then book a 25-minute flight to and from Bonaire. In October, a round-trip flight to Bonaire from Curacao on InselAir will set you back around $117. Flights to Curacao from New York start at $200.</p> <h3>5. Belize</h3> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/the_blue_hole_lighthouse_reef_belize.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Belize is a Central American country known for its amazing junglelike scenery and unique diving opportunities. Here, you can dive a section of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef system known as the Belize Barrier Reef. The highlight for many people is the renowned Blue Hole &mdash; a giant sinkhole that has become one of the world's most famous dive sites. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/once-in-a-lifetime-experiences-ive-earned-with-credit-card-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Once-in-a-Lifetime Experiences I've Earned With Credit Card Rewards</a>)</p> <p>Although Belize is also known for being one the most expensive countries in Central America, it's not bad when compared to some Caribbean islands. There are also plenty of resorts that combine hotel stays with dive courses at good rates.</p> <p>Ramons Village Resort is just one option. Rooms start at $155 per night and you can get your open water certification through the resort for $450.</p> <p>Belize can be extremely affordable to get to, depending on where you live. Flights to Belize from Chicago on <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/southwest-airlines-just-got-even-better-with-the-southwest-rapid-rewards-plus-card?ref=internal" target="_blank">Southwest Airlines</a> start at around $400, and may run even less during Southwest sales.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Budget%2520Destinations%2520Where%2520You%2520Can%2520Learn%2520to%2520Scuba%2520Dive.jpg&amp;description=5%20Budget%20Destinations%20Where%20You%20Can%20Learn%20to%20Scuba%20Dive"></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%20Budget%20Destinations%20Where%20You%20Can%20Learn%20to%20Scuba%20Dive.jpg" alt="5 Budget Destinations Where You Can Learn to Scuba Dive" 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/5-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive">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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny Budget</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas">6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas</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-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</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-european-cities-you-can-visit-for-50-a-day">5 European Cities You Can Visit for $50 a Day</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel beach activities family travel scuba dive travel tips tropical destinations vacation activities Mon, 30 Apr 2018 08:30:16 +0000 Holly Johnson 2134244 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Phone Plans That Offer Cheaper Roaming Charges While Traveling http://www.wisebread.com/5-phone-plans-that-offer-cheaper-roaming-charges-while-traveling <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-phone-plans-that-offer-cheaper-roaming-charges-while-traveling" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/selfie_in_the_mountain.jpg" alt="Selfie in the mountain" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>For years, traveling internationally with a cellphone has lead to exorbitant roaming costs and astronomical charges racked up accidentally along the way. Though phone plans have improved considerably over the past few years &mdash; with carriers making international access a key part of their services &mdash; using your phone abroad can still be costly. There are also massive differences between what each company offers, and it can be difficult to determine which one to select if you spend a lot of time on the road. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-ways-to-save-on-smartphone-costs-while-traveling?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Ways to Save on Smartphone Costs While Traveling</a>)</p> <p>To save you from running up unforeseen bills on your travels, check out these five phone plans that offer cheaper roaming charges.</p> <h2>1. AT&amp;T International Day Pass</h2> <p>The <a href="https://www.att.com/offers/international-plans/day-pass.html" target="_blank">International Day Pass</a> from AT&amp;T allows you to take your existing plan with you on the road so you're able to use your data, minutes, and text message allowance. It covers you in over 100 countries, is easily activated online or by calling them, and once it's added to your device, it stays there ready to go for each time you head abroad.</p> <p>To qualify for the International Day Pass, you need to have a Mobile Share Plan or the AT&amp;T Unlimited Plan. Conveniently, you only pay the $10 daily fee on the days that you actually use your package, rather than for each day you're abroad.</p> <h2>2. T-Mobile One Plan</h2> <p><a href="https://www.t-mobile.com/optional-services/roaming.html" target="_blank">T-Mobile's One Plan</a> aims to be the simplest, most transparent plan on the market and this objective remains the same when it comes to taking it abroad. There's no need to change any settings on your account before your trip because international roaming comes as standard.</p> <p>You're able to use your unlimited data in over 140 countries, but only with speeds of up to 128 kbps. This is fine for browsing the web or checking emails but no good for streaming or downloads. If you need higher speeds, you can upgrade to the One Plus plan for $10 per month to get 256 kbps. Texting is also free with the plan. Depending on how many lines you have, prices T-Mobile plans can be as low as $40 per month.</p> <h2>3. Sprint Global Roaming</h2> <p>With <a href="https://www.sprint.com/en/shop/services/global-roaming.html" target="_blank">Sprint Global Roaming</a>, international roaming coverage is enabled at no extra cost in more than 200 countries. In 165 destinations that are deemed &quot;low service areas,&quot; the package also includes free texts, free data and low-speed data, and calls at just 20 cents per minute. It should be automatically configured on your smartphone without you having to do anything, so you can simply up and go whenever you want without having to worry about changing your package.</p> <p>The service supports data speeds of up to 2G, which is good enough for basic web usage and things like map navigation, but won't cope with streaming or downloading. If you're a heavy user or need quicker speeds, Sprint has high speed data add-ons that will give you speeds up to LTE. In most destinations the cost will be $5 per day or $25 per week, and you can add this service even if you're already abroad. Sprint's basic plans start at $40&ndash;$60 per month.</p> <h2>4. Verizon Travel Pass</h2> <p><a href="https://www.verizonwireless.com/solutions-and-services/international-travel/" target="_blank">Verizon's Travel Pass plan</a> is virtually identical to the AT&amp;T International Day Pass, allowing you to take your existing plan with you to over 130 countries for a daily fee. In Mexico and Canada, you'll pay an additional $5 per day, and $10 per day in other countries. You'll be able to use your talk, text, and data.</p> <p>You only pay for the days that you actually use the service, and not for each day that you're abroad. Verizon's regular unlimited plans come in at $75 per month for a single line and go as low as $40 per line ($160 per month) if you have four lines.</p> <h2>5. Google Project Fi</h2> <p><a href="https://fi.google.com/about/plan/" target="_blank">Google's Project Fi</a> virtual network came up with a unique way of pricing its plan to give people the ability to only pay for what they use. You pay a flat rate of $20 per month for text and calls, then you pay $10 per GB of data that you use. The plan's simplicity means that it remains exactly the same providing you're in one of the 170+ destinations where they provide coverage.</p> <p>One thing to note with Project Fi is that you have an extremely limited number of phones to choose from that are compatible with the network.</p> <h2>Alternatives to using mobile roaming data</h2> <p>Regardless of which provider you choose, there are pros and cons to using your data package abroad. However, to keep the costs down, there are ways to reduce your time spent using roaming data. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/technology-hacks-for-the-international-traveler?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Technology Hacks for the International Traveler</a>)</p> <h3>Buy a local sim card</h3> <p>Depending on where you go, local sims are often the cheapest way to get data at a far lower price. Having used these all over the world, in my experience, they usually range in price from absolutely free to around $10. You can then access local prepaid rates that tend to be cheaper than international roaming rates.</p> <h3>Stick to Wi-Fi</h3> <p>Wi-Fi hot spots are available virtually everywhere, many are free of charge, and they can also provide quicker speeds than cellular data services. If you're able to save your online activity for when you're in range of one, or at your hotel or in a coffee shop with Wi-Fi, you'll save even more.</p> <h3>Extend your data</h3> <p>There are lots of apps available that help to extend your data by compressing it, so you use less than you ordinarily would. Many apps also have options in their settings to compress their data usage, including the Chrome browser, Facebook, and Instagram.</p> <h3>Turn off background data usage</h3> <p>Lots of apps use your data even when they're not actually being used, which can lead to those unexpected, and unbelievably high bills upon returning home. Your process to restrict or turn off background data usage depends on what model of phone you have. You can ordinarily do this in settings or on specific apps.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-phone-plans-that-offer-cheaper-roaming-charges-while-traveling&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%2520Phone%2520Plans%2520That%2520Offer%2520Cheaper%2520Roaming%2520Charges%2520While%2520Traveling.jpg&amp;description=5%20Phone%20Plans%20That%20Offer%20Cheaper%20Roaming%20Charges%20While%20Traveling"></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%20Phone%20Plans%20That%20Offer%20Cheaper%20Roaming%20Charges%20While%20Traveling.jpg" alt="5 Phone Plans That Offer Cheaper Roaming Charges While Traveling" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-phone-plans-that-offer-cheaper-roaming-charges-while-traveling">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-ways-to-save-on-smartphone-costs-while-traveling">8 Ways to Save on Smartphone Costs While Traveling</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-affordable-kid-free-vacation-ideas">6 Affordable Kid-Free Vacation Ideas</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-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing">7 Common Travel Myths That People Need to Stop Believing</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-budget-destinations-where-you-can-learn-to-scuba-dive">5 Budget Destinations Where You Can Learn to Scuba Dive</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Technology Travel affordable travel cellphone plan mobile phone phone bill roaming charges smartphone travel tips Fri, 27 Apr 2018 08:30:11 +0000 Nick Wharton 2136189 at http://www.wisebread.com 4 Affordable Destinations That Are Safer Than You Think http://www.wisebread.com/4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/the_monastery_al_deir_temple.jpg" alt="The Monastery (Al Deir Temple)" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There are countless corners of the world that are completely misunderstood and labeled as &quot;unsafe,&quot; when the reality is far from that simple. Violence, wars, terrorism, and drugs can all destroy a country's image and leave lasting negative consequences for its tourism industry.</p> <p>But if you're looking for a budget vacation that's a little out of the ordinary, then consider exploring countries that for one reason or another haven't always enjoyed the best of reputations. Here are four affordable destinations that are actually less dangerous than you might think. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-of-the-safest-countries-to-visit-in-2018?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 of the Safest Countries to Visit in 2018</a>)</p> <p>*All cost estimates are taken from Numbeo.com, a trusted source of user contributed data for the cost of living in countries, and leading hotel site Booking.com.</p> <h2>Rwanda</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/model_resettlement_village%20in_northern_rwanda.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Rwanda's recent history has been deeply shaped by the brutal civil war that was waged here in the early 1990s, and in so many ways it's still struggling to overcome the devastating aftermath. Up to a million people are estimated to have been killed during the unrest and the genocide that followed. Though this war ended over 20 years ago, for many it's still the first thing that springs to mind when Rwanda is mentioned, deterring some potential visitors.</p> <p>Today, the landscape in Rwanda is very different, and though the scars remain, it's beginning to build a reputation as one of the continent's finest tourist destinations. It's now widely regarded as one of the safest and most politically stable countries in Africa. At the time of publishing, the U.S. State Department rates it as having the lowest possible travel advisory level, with no current security alerts.</p> <p>Despite its diminutive size, it packs a punch far above its weight in terms of attractions. Known as &quot;The Land of a Thousand Hills,&quot; its undulating terrain is home to some incredible scenery and rare animals. This includes the famous National Volcanoes Park where you'll find some of the world's last remaining mountain gorillas.</p> <p>Rwanda is also rated as one of the most affordable countries to visit in the region. A meal at an inexpensive restaurant will set you back just $2.88, and a room in a budget hotel will start at around $30 depending on which area you're in.</p> <h2>Morocco</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/ait_benhaddou_moroccan_ancient_fortress.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>North Africa has developed a less than stellar reputation in recent years having been blighted by numerous acts of horrific terrorism. Morocco has also experienced terrorist-related incidents in the past, and it should be pointed out that the U.S. State Department says that &quot;the potential for terrorist violence against U.S. interests and citizens exists.&quot;</p> <p>However, the State Department&rsquo;s travel advisory level for Morocco is currently at level 1, the lowest possible level, and there have not been any terrorist attacks in Morocco since 2011. It's widely considered one of the safest countries in the region and its continued high levels of tourism bear testament to this.</p> <p>Exquisite architecture intricately decorated with tiled mosaics, bustling marketplaces full of vibrantly colored spices and fabrics, and swathes of sand dunes stretching out for miles on end are just some of the reasons to visit Morocco. The cuisine is also a huge draw, with richly spiced dishes mixing sweet and savory to mouth watering effect.</p> <p>Thanks in part to the large numbers of tourists it receives, Morocco is one of the most reasonably priced countries in the region. Budget rooms are available starting at around $30 and a meal at an inexpensive restaurant will cost a little more than $3.</p> <h2>Colombia</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/clock_tower_gate_0.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The shadow cast by drug kingpins like the notorious Pablo Escobar still lingers over Colombia, and these associations have proved difficult for the South American country to eliminate. Potential visitors still sometimes fear accidentally getting caught up in the drug trade, being kidnapped by guerrilla fighters, and becoming the victim of organized gang violence. This hasn't been helped by the recent release of popular movies and TV series on the subject.</p> <p>While these fears would have been well founded in the '80s and '90s, Colombia has worked hard to free itself from the clutches of organized crime. In the process, it's begun reinventing itself as a favored tourist destination for travelers wanting a taste of this previously unexplored South American country.</p> <p>Colombia has an attractive mixture of cutting edge modernity and a diverse range of breathtaking, untouched landscapes. This is showcased in cities like Medellin, whose stunning scenery includes swathes of lush jungle and a Caribbean coastline filled with pristine beaches.</p> <p>Colombia is also one of the most affordable countries in South America. That&rsquo;s one reason it's currently enjoying a wave of popularity among young backpackers. Even in the bigger cities, budget rooms are available for less than $25 per night and a meal at an inexpensive restaurant will cost less than $4.</p> <h2>Jordan</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/red_sand_in_wadi_rum.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Middle East is widely regarded as a no-go zone by many people who view the entire region as dangerous. This opinion is fueled by the political instability and well-publicized conflicts that are still ongoing in countries like Syria, Iraq, and Palestine. Because of this, the Middle East in general is not considered your typical vacation destination, and there's a lot of fear around visiting.</p> <p>The tiny country of Jordan, however, is trying its hardest to buck the trend and has become something of an &quot;it&quot; destination in recent years. Though there are safety warnings for the areas close to the borders it shares with some of its neighboring countries, it's stable politically and generally safe to visit.</p> <p>The main reason that people come to Jordan is to visit the famous archaeological wonder and UNESCO World Heritage site, Petra. This ancient city is made up of buildings that were meticulously carved into the red sandstone rock face over 2,000 years ago, when it was the epicenter of a vast empire.</p> <p>But that's not all there is to Jordan. Modern cities like Amman and exciting adventure activities available make it a diverse location. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-incredible-unesco-world-heritage-sites-right-here-in-the-us?ref=seealso" target="_blank">11 Incredible UNESCO World Heritage Sites Right Here in the U.S.</a>)</p> <p>Budget hotel rooms come in at less than $30 in many areas, or for even less you can spend the night under the stars in a traditional Bedouin camp. An inexpensive meal will cost around $7.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F4%2520Affordable%2520Destinations%2520That%2520Are%2520Safer%2520Than%2520You%2520Think.jpg&amp;description=4%20Affordable%20Destinations%20That%20Are%20Safer%20Than%20You%20Think"></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/u5180/4%20Affordable%20Destinations%20That%20Are%20Safer%20Than%20You%20Think.jpg" alt="4 Affordable Destinations That Are Safer Than You Think" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think">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-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing">7 Common Travel Myths That People Need to Stop Believing</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-of-the-safest-countries-to-visit-in-2018">5 of the Safest Countries to Visit in 2018</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-places-to-travel-where-the-dollar-is-still-strong">8 Places to Travel Where the Dollar Is Still Strong</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-travel-warnings-you-shouldnt-ignore">8 Travel Warnings You Shouldn&#039;t Ignore</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/stay-secure-in-your-hotel-with-this-8-point-safety-check">Stay Secure in Your Hotel With This 8-Point Safety Check</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Consumer Affairs Travel affordable travel safe travel safety advisory travel destinations travel safety travel tips Thu, 26 Apr 2018 08:30:15 +0000 Nick Wharton 2135304 at http://www.wisebread.com How a Family of 4 Can Book a Disney Vacation for $1,000 or Less http://www.wisebread.com/how-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/how-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/son_and_daughter_with_mother_on_roller_coaster_ride.jpg" alt="Son and daughter with mother on roller coaster ride" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Even though Disney parks are notoriously expensive, there are still plenty of ways to save. If you're on a tight budget, you could visit a Disney park for only one day and spend the rest of your trip at the hotel pool, for example. You could also buy one-park day passes instead of &quot;park hopper&quot; tickets that let you access multiple parks, and you could skip out on extras like character dinners and souvenirs.</p> <p>You could even stay in an off-site condo or timeshare rental, bring and make all of your meals, and drive to the park instead of flying.</p> <p>But you'll still face the inevitable fact that Disney isn't cheap. Even one-day park tickets start at $109 at Disney Magic Kingdom Park during nonpeak times. Plus, you have hotel stays to cover, meals to pay for, and, well, everything else. And if you need to fly to the park, you can add hundreds of dollars per person to your total bill.</p> <p>Fortunately, the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">best travel rewards credit cards</a> can help you plan a Disney vacation that fits within your budget. You may not get your entire trip for free, but the right combination of cards and points can help you save on some of the bigger components of your trip and whittle your total travel costs down.</p> <p>While you'll want to plan at least six months to one year ahead if you want to use rewards to cover airfare or hotels, the strategy below is totally doable if you have the right mindset. Here's how to plan a Disney trip for $1,000 or less for a family of four.</p> <h2>Paying for airfare to Disney</h2> <p>If you don't need to fly to Orlando at the start of your Disney World trip, then you can restrict your transportation costs to the price of gas. But if you need to fly, you'll want to make sure you sign up for the right combination of airline or flexible travel credit cards ahead of time.</p> <p>One of the best options to focus on is <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/why-southwest-airlines-is-the-best-domestic-airline-for-families?ref=internal" target="_blank">Southwest Rapid Rewards</a> if Southwest Airlines flies out of your home airport. You can rack up Southwest miles with a co-branded Southwest credit card or transfer points 1:1 to Southwest from a popular bank rewards credit card.</p> <p>The tricky thing about using Southwest is the fact that award flights fluctuate based on ticket pricing. This makes it difficult to predict how many points you need for a flight, but it's also a good thing since lower-priced flights cost fewer points.</p> <p>You can frequently find flights from many U.S. cities to Orlando for as little as 6,000 miles one-way or 12,000 miles round-trip. If you find a sale or book when prices are low, this could mean getting your entire family's airfare to Orlando covered for 48,000 miles round-trip. Keep in mind, however, that you'll also have to pay $5.60 in government-mandated taxes and fees for each leg of your flights.</p> <p>If your local airport doesn't offer flights with Southwest, you'll need to look for a different frequent flyer program to rack up points with. JetBlue is another good option since flights can cost fewer points on certain dates and they are easy to earn. I found round-trip flights from Chicago to Orlando on JetBlue in June for 16,000 miles (plus $11.20 in fees), for example.</p> <p>You could also consider American Airlines, which will charge 25,000 miles round-trip (or fewer miles if you live within 500 miles of Orlando), plus the same $5.60 per leg in taxes. United MileagePlus is another good option for as little as 20,000 miles round-trip, plus taxes. Last but not least, Delta Air Lines may have good options from your home airport, but you should check online ahead of time before you start racking up Delta miles since the airline no longer publishes an award chart.</p> <h2>Covering hotels</h2> <p>Hotels are fairly easy to cover near Disney World in Orlando, and that's true whether you want to stay in a traditional hotel room or a condo. Most of the major hotel brands offer properties in the Disney area, with some even on park property. Here are some of the best options to consider racking up hotel points with using either a co-branded hotel credit card or a card that lets you transfer points. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/breakdown-of-benefits-and-value-of-the-best-hotel-rewards-programs-and-credit-cards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Best Hotel Programs and Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p><strong>Starwood Preferred Guest:</strong></p> <ul> <li> <p>Sheraton Lake Buena Vista Resort &mdash; from 4,000 Starpoints per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Walt Disney World Dolphin &mdash; from 12,000 Starpoints per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Sheraton Vistana Resort Villas &mdash; from 10,000 Starpoints per night</p> </li> </ul> <p><strong>IHG Rewards:</strong></p> <ul> <li> <p>Holiday Inn &amp; Suites Across from Universal Orlando &mdash; from 25,000 points per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Crowne Plaza Orlando &mdash; from 30,000 points per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Holiday Inn Lake Buena Vista Resort &mdash; from 35,000 points per night</p> </li> </ul> <p><strong>Marriott Rewards:</strong></p> <ul> <li> <p>Fairfield Inn &amp; Suites Orlando Near Universal Orlando Resort &mdash; from 30,000 points per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Residence Inn Near Universal Orlando &mdash; from 30,000 points per night</p> </li> </ul> <p><strong>Hilton Honors:</strong></p> <ul> <li> <p>DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Orlando Downtown &mdash; 30,000 points per night</p> </li> <li> <p>Hampton Inn near Universal Studios &mdash; 30,000 points per night</p> </li> <li> <p>DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel near Universal Orlando &mdash; 30,000 points per night</p> </li> </ul> <p>To make any of the above options work, you'll want to get a co-branded hotel credit card or a card that lets you transfer points to hotel programs. Find out how many points you need for the number of nights you want to stay ahead of time, then strategize credit card sign-up bonuses and regular spending to earn enough points in time. You can also consider having yourself and your spouse sign up for the same card to earn double the sign-up bonuses. And don't forget that Starwood Preferred Guest, Marriott, and Hilton usually offer a fifth night free when you book with rewards.</p> <p>Also keep in mind that you can use points to book any kind of accommodation if you've got a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-with-easy-travel-redemption?ref=internal" target="_blank">flexible travel credit card</a> that doles out travel credit instead of hotel points. Cards that fall into this category let you earn points that can be redeemed for any travel purchase at a rate of one cent per point. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-credit-cards-have-the-best-travel-redemption-value?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Credit Cards With the Best Travel Redemption Value</a>)</p> <h2>What about park tickets?</h2> <p>While hotels and airfare may be fairly easily covered with rewards, park tickets can be tricky. This is partly because Disney seldom has sales on tickets to its parks.</p> <p>One of the best workarounds is to sign up for a credit card that offers flexible points you can redeem for any travel purchase. Better yet, both you and a spouse or partner sign up and earn double the sign-up bonuses.</p> <p>There are some cards that offer 50,000 bonus points after you spend $3,000 within the first three months of the account opening. Plus, you earn two points for each dollar you spend, meaning you'll have $560 in travel credit after you earn the sign-up bonus. If both you and a partner sign up, you could have $1,120 in travel credit to spend on park tickets. That's easily enough to cover four two-day &quot;park hopper&quot; tickets for a family of four with two kids ages 3-9.</p> <p>The downside here is that, traditionally, Disney purchases have not coded as &quot;travel,&quot; which is the key factor that lets you cover them with flexible travel credit. To work around this, buy your Disney World Orlando park tickets from <a href="https://www.undercovertourist.com/" target="_blank">UndercoverTourist.com</a>. This website does code as travel when you purchase with credit, and it offers similar prices to the Disney website.</p> <h2>Adding it all together</h2> <p>While there are lots of ways to piece together a Disney trip with credit card rewards, this blueprint has the potential to help you achieve a Disney vacation for four for less than $1,000. If you covered your airfare with Southwest Rapid Rewards points, covered your hotel entirely with points, and used flexible travel credit to pay for a few days at Disney parks, for example, you would have the bulk of your $1,000 budget to spend on food and fun.</p> <p>You can also cover part of your trip with rewards and pay the rest in cash. If you can stay near the parks with a friend or relative for free, for example, you could focus your rewards efforts on covering flights and park tickets and skip over hotels altogether.</p> <p>If your goal is saving money on a Disney vacation, then more than one strategy will work. The key is planning ahead, reading the fine print, and pursuing credit card rewards with caution and care.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fhow-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FHow%2520a%2520Family%2520of%25204%2520Can%2520Book%2520a%2520Disney%2520Vacation%2520for%2520%25241%252C000%2520or%2520Less.jpg&amp;description=How%20a%20Family%20of%204%20Can%20Book%20a%20Disney%20Vacation%20for%20%241%2C000%20or%20Less"></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%20a%20Family%20of%204%20Can%20Book%20a%20Disney%20Vacation%20for%20%241%2C000%20or%20Less.jpg" alt="How a Family of 4 Can Book a Disney Vacation for $1,000 or Less" 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-a-family-of-4-can-book-a-disney-vacation-for-1000-or-less">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-ways-to-save-on-a-european-getaway-with-kids">7 Ways to Save on a European Getaway With Kids</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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-save-big-on-last-minute-travel">How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel</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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny Budget</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-vacation-in-greece-for-300-or-less">How to Vacation in Greece for $300 or Less</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel affordable travel Disney disney world family trip family vacation travel budget travel tips Wed, 25 Apr 2018 08:30:05 +0000 Holly Johnson 2133919 at http://www.wisebread.com 9 Travel Destinations for Introverts http://www.wisebread.com/9-travel-destinations-for-introverts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/9-travel-destinations-for-introverts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/scenic_oregon_coast.jpg" alt="Scenic Oregon Coast" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Introverts love to travel as much as extroverts, they just prefer to skip places teeming with tourists. Breathtaking scenery, one-on-one conversations, and time for reflection are more important than, say, joining the limbo contest on a rowdy cruise ship.</p> <p>The good news is, there are many vacation ideas that are perfect for introverts. Some of these destinations promote solitude, while others make it easy to get lost in your own thoughts no matter who is around.</p> <h2>1. Visit the Great Wall of China</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/the_great_wall_of_china.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Great Wall of China actually began as a series of heavy brick walls and structures to protect Chinese empires from attacks. The first was constructed in 771 BC and later installments were connected 2,200 years ago. Today's wall is thousands of miles long, with many of its components winding through gorgeous green hills and ancient lands.</p> <p>As an introvert, exploring the Great Wall of China offers a dramatic way to walk through history and learn about the past without visiting a stuffy museum. Focus your itinerary on the less touristy areas of the wall. The Mutianyu and Badaling sections are easily accessible but mobbed with visitors. You can find tours to the Jinshanling and Simatai sections of the wall on Viator. These parts are harder to get to and may involve hiking over unrestored parts of the wall, but they are much less crowded and offer spectacular views of the wall and countryside.</p> <p>For an even less touristy visit, avoid weekends and peak travel times (usually May through August in China) and Chinese New Year, which usually takes place in February. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Flight-Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a>)</p> <h2>2. Summit Mt. Kilimanjaro</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/elephant_and_kilimanjaro.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Located in northern Tanzania, the 19,000-foot Mount Kilimanjaro is the tallest mountain in Africa and the tallest free-standing mountain anywhere. Although the fact that you can hike up Kilimanjaro without crampons or technical climbing gear makes it one of the easiest major mountains to summit, it also means it's no stranger to tourists. Still, you can take less crowded routes, and even if you're not alone, life doesn't get much more serene than atop this majestic mountain.</p> <p>Introverts can book a small group tour or even a private climb up Mt. Kilimanjaro. Prices vary widely, but according to the guide company Peak Planet, a good rule of thumb is to plan on spending about $5,000 for your trip, including round-trip airfare from the U.S. That's not cheap, but if you're adventurous, this could be a once-in-a-lifetime trip. <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">Travel rewards credit cards</a> can help you defray the costs. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/once-in-a-lifetime-experiences-ive-earned-with-credit-card-rewards?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Once-In-A-Lifetime Experiences I've Earned With Credit Card Rewards</a>)</p> <h2>3. Get lost in the streets of Venice, Italy</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/view_from_gondola_venice.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Venice may be bursting at the seams with people, but it's still one of the most beautiful places for introverts to travel. Walk to the Plaza San Marco at sunrise and you'll have the place almost to yourself. By all means, take a gondola ride down the Grand Canal and though the winding neighborhoods that make up this historic city (solo tours are around $100). Or find a cozy spot to sit in Saint Mark's Square for some interesting people-watching.</p> <p>But also wander off the beaten path to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection or contemporary art galleries such as Teatrino di Palazzo Grassi. Or stroll through the Cannaregio section of town whose back alleys and sunny squares offer a glimpse of everyday life for the Venetians who live here.</p> <h2>4. Tour the Galápagos Islands</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/galapagos_sea_lion.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Galapagos are a series of natural volcanic islands that belong to Ecuador. Because they were isolated from the mainland for thousands of years, they are home to some of the most unusual species of wildlife, including giant tortoises, marine iguanas, blue-footed boobies, and the world's only equatorial penguin.</p> <p>After spending some time on the mainland, you can book a small group cruise to some of these islands. Small group trips with Intrepid Travel leave from Quito, Ecuador and start at around $2,000 per person for eight days, with boat travel, meals, snorkeling, and kayaking included. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/where-to-do-9-popular-bucket-list-items-on-a-budget?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Where to Do 9 Popular Bucket List Items on a Budget</a>)</p> <h2>5. Visit the quiet shores of Nevis</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/scenic_view_of_saint_kitts.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Caribbean includes an array of gorgeous islands that feature crystal clear waters, gorgeous white sand, and natural beauty. Unfortunately, many islands are also crowded with beachgoers and partyers that can ruin the mood.</p> <p>The Caribbean island of Nevis, however, is not overrun with people or tour groups. Since major airlines don't fly here (most people take a ferry from nearby St. Kitts), renting a beachfront hotel will get you a whole lot more than beautiful scenery; you may have the place to yourself.</p> <p>There is only one major hotel chain represented on the entire island &mdash; the Four Seasons Resort. Elsewhere around Nevis, you'll find small family-run restaurants and shops, along with quaint hotels and ample beach space that provides opportunities for solitude.</p> <p>Stay at the charming Hermitage hotel for quiet mountain beauty, afternoon tea, homemade meals in the Great House, and gorgeous views of the ocean below. Or, book one of the cheaper hotels on the island, which can cost as little as $150 per night in the late summer months. Rooms at the small, eco-conscious beachfront Oualie Beach Resort start at just $166 per night, for example. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/caribbean-island-vacations-anyone-can-afford?ref=seealso" target="_blank">Caribbean Island Vacations Anyone Can Afford</a>)</p> <h2>6. Head to Tulum, Mexico</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/el_castillo_tulum_mexico.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Tulum, Mexico is the perfect spot for solitude because it's so beautiful, historic, and naturally elegant. Here, you'll find ancient Mayan ruins to explore, white sand beaches lapped by crystal clear water, and exotic swimming holes knows as cenotes where you can swim with fish and other wildlife.</p> <p>While Mexico's bigger resort cities like Cancun and Cabo San Lucas are well known for their parties and crowds, Tulum offers an atmosphere that promotes peaceful relaxation and proximity to nature. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-most-affordable-beach-towns-in-mexico?ref=seealso" target="_blank">8 Most Affordable Beach Towns in Mexico</a>)</p> <h2>7. Take in the Oregon coast</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/scenic_oregon_coast.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>The Oregon coast offers plenty for introverts, including cozy cafes perfect for reading, expansive beaches ideal for quiet relaxation, and hundreds of miles of natural beauty. The Oregon Beach Bill even ensures you'll get access to the state's beautiful shoreline. This 1967 measure established public ownership of land along the coast, meaning you don't have to stay on the water to set yourself up for long strolls on the beach.</p> <p>The Oregon coast is ideal for walking, lazing on the beach, and watching dramatic sunsets.</p> <p>Or, you can hike through nearby old growth forests while keeping your eye out for wildlife. Oregon's coast is home to numerous species you may not see at home, including white-tailed deer, burrowing owls, sea otters, and beavers.</p> <h2>8. Explore Iceland</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/aurora_over_kirkjufell_and_waterfall_at_night_0.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>Iceland has long been considered one of the best destinations for solo travelers, mostly due to its low crime rate and the many amazing things to do and see. If you love the outdoors, you will never get bored in Iceland &mdash; even if you're alone. For example, you could head to Iceland to hike a glacier, explore the capital city of Reykjavik, swim in thermal pools, or explore an active volcano.</p> <p>One way to go is to book a solo tour with Baltic Travel Company. Starting at around $1,100, you can see the northern lights (Aurora Borealis), spend time in Iceland's cities, or even embark on a <em>Game of Thrones</em> adventure with a knowledgeable guide.</p> <p>Traveling to Iceland outside of the peak months of June through August will help you save money and avoid heavy crowds. Plus, there is plenty to see and do in spring, fall, and even winter if you can stomach the colder weather and short days (winter days have as few as four hours of sunlight). You can get a spectacular view of the northern lights from mid-March to mid-May, for example. And visitors in September can participate in annual sheepherding and horse-herding rituals, which take place in the Icelandic backcountry. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-of-the-safest-countries-to-visit-in-2018?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 of the Safest Countries to Visit in 2018</a>)</p> <h2>9. Take a budget road trip to U.S. national parks</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5197/yosemite_national_park_valley_at_autumn.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you like driving, a road trip around the United States may be the best idea yet. With nothing but the road in front of you, you could forget about stresses back home while watching the scenery unfold.</p> <p>With enough time, you could explore some of the most beautiful parts of the world in the nation's national parks. The best way to avoid the crowds is to plan your trip any time that kids are in school. Avoid the summer months, spring break (usually mid-March), and holiday weekends when kids may have four or five days off in a row, for example.</p> <p>A national park pass to see destinations like Yosemite, Arches National Park, the Great Smoky Mountains, and Mount Rushmore costs just $80 annually. You can save money by staying in inexpensive hotels or camping along the way. You could enjoy some peace and quiet while hiking gorgeous cliffs, white water rafting, or just curling up with a good book in the great outdoors. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-save-on-national-park-visits-in-2018?ref=seealso" target="_blank">How to Save on National Park Visits in 2018</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F9-travel-destinations-for-introverts&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F9%2520Travel%2520Destinations%2520for%2520Introverts.jpg&amp;description=9%20Travel%20Destinations%20for%20Introverts"></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/u5180/9%20Travel%20Destinations%20for%20Introverts.jpg" alt="9 Travel Destinations for Introverts" 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/9-travel-destinations-for-introverts">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/5-laid-back-girls-trip-destinations-anyone-can-afford">5 Laid-Back Girls&#039; Trip Destinations Anyone Can Afford</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-affordable-destinations-for-nature-lovers">7 Affordable Destinations for Nature Lovers</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-ways-to-travel-on-a-budget-while-in-expensive-countries">6 Ways to Travel On a Budget While in Expensive Countries</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-get-to-machu-picchu-and-back-for-30">How to Get to Machu Picchu and Back for $30</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/4-affordable-destinations-that-are-safer-than-you-think">4 Affordable Destinations That Are Safer Than You Think</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel affordable travel introvert traits introverts solo travel travel destinations travel tips Tue, 24 Apr 2018 08:30:11 +0000 Holly Johnson 2133485 at http://www.wisebread.com Train vs. Plane Travel: Which Is Right for You? http://www.wisebread.com/train-vs-plane-travel-which-is-right-for-you <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/train-vs-plane-travel-which-is-right-for-you" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man_at_the_train_station.jpg" alt="Man at the train station" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>For long-haul international travel, flying is usually the only way to go. But in Europe or within many countries, train travel is a viable alternative to flights. In many cases it&rsquo;s cheaper and more comfortable than flying, and sometimes it&rsquo;s even faster. Here's how to choose whether train or plane travel is right for you on your next trip.</p> <h2>Benefits of train travel</h2> <p>Here are a few ways you can really cash in on traveling by train.</p> <h3>Lower costs</h3> <p>One of the main benefits that train travel often has over flying is cost. In Japan, for instance, you can get a JR Pass good for a week of unlimited travel around the whole country for less than $300. Europe has a similar kind of system with its Interrail Global Pass. These kinds of passes can be cost effective if you're visiting various places in a short period of time. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-fun-affordable-train-trips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">5 Fun, Affordable Train Trips</a>)</p> <h3>Better views</h3> <p>Many train enthusiasts love the fact that you get to experience the country you're traveling in from a different perspective, and often get great views from the seats. Train lines tend to run along routes that would otherwise be difficult to visit, and some of the most iconic journeys go through the heart of stunning locations. Amtrak's Coast Starlight, for example, runs between Los Angeles and Seattle, providing dramatic views of the Cascade Mountains and long stretches of the Pacific Ocean. By air, you may get a glimpse of a city or mountain range when you take off or land, but generally, you'll be stuck with mostly clouds.</p> <h3>More luggage</h3> <p>Trains also allow passengers to transport more luggage, which when traveling heavy can make a real difference. For example, Amtrak allows each passenger to check two 50-lb bags and carry on two 50-lb bags as well as two 25-lb personal items &mdash; all for no added cost. Other train services throughout the world either don't have baggage allowances at all, or don't enforce them, meaning you're free to take as much as you'd like.</p> <p>In comparison, most airlines charge at least $25 for each checked bag on domestic flights, and limit you to one carry-on and one personal item. Many charge for carry-ons these days, too.</p> <h2>More comfort &mdash; usually</h2> <p>With airlines shrinking seat size and legroom to squeeze an ever-growing number of passengers onto planes, train travel can seem luxuriously comfortable. That&rsquo;s assuming that you actually get a seat. Depending on what level of ticket you buy and the route you&rsquo;re traveling, it may not be possible to get an assigned seat or even any seat at all. On Amtrak&rsquo;s bustling Northeast Corridor line, for instance, it&rsquo;s not unusual to have to stand for at least part of the ride in coach from New York to Washington, D.C.</p> <h2>Benefits of flying</h2> <p>Here are a few ways air travel beats the train.</p> <h3>More options for destinations</h3> <p>Air travel provides far more flexibility in terms of the locations you're able to get to. In many countries, rail routes are extremely limited, and can even be nonexistent. This may actually leave air travel as your only option in many instances. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds?ref=seealso" target="_blank">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a>)</p> <h3>Plane travel is slightly less deadly</h3> <p>Plane crashes tend to be catastrophic, and the nature of traveling at such high speeds at high altitudes means that when they do happen, the number of deaths is high. However, plane crashes are far more infrequent than many people would imagine, and a study by Northwestern University found that the number of deaths per passenger mile is actually lower on planes than on trains. While both modes of transport are considered extremely safe, and both far less risky than traveling by car, perhaps surprisingly, the risk of fatality is lower in planes than on trains.</p> <h3>Guaranteed seats</h3> <p>Planes have a fixed capacity, meaning you will always have a seat and not have to stand up on any journey, provided you don't get bumped. Trains, on the other hand, are busy and overpopulated in some countries and along certain routes at peak times. While your aircraft seat may be cramped, at least you&rsquo;ll have one. And on most airlines, you&rsquo;ll have an assigned seat so you won't be frantically scanning for a seat among hordes of commuters. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-to-do-if-you-get-bumped-from-a-flight?ref=seealso" target="_blank">What to Do If You Get Bumped From a Flight</a>)</p> <h2>The differences in speed and travel time</h2> <p>Often it's assumed that because planes travel faster than trains, getting from point A to point B is automatically going to be quicker. However, this isn't always the case, and it's important to take into consideration the full journey time rather than just the ticket's stated journey duration.</p> <p>In the case of a flight, this includes the fact that you need to arrive at the airport at least one hour before takeoff &mdash; two hours for international flights. Then there's the time it takes to get to and from the airports. Airports, particularly ones that budget airlines use, tend to be out of city limits and in less convenient locations.</p> <p>Train stations, on the other hand, are routinely located in the heart of cities, which could knock a significant amount off your total travel time. It may make your ground transportation much cheaper and easier as well, especially if you&rsquo;re using municipal public transport.</p> <p>However, for distances of more than a few hundred miles, planes are still dramatically faster than trains. You may be able to get from Philadelphia to Boston in about the same travel time, but if you&rsquo;re traveling across a country or continent, train rides are for those who have more time than money, or who relish the romance and adventure of train travel.</p> <h2>What does the future hold?</h2> <p>The gap between rail and air travel appears to be narrowing, with many new high speed rail links in the planning stages across the world. This is particularly true in China, where there's a real focus on improving the rail infrastructure and creating better and quicker links between major cities.</p> <p>For some journeys across Japan, China, South Korea, and Europe on modern train lines using advanced technology, trains travel significantly faster than they used to. New designs in development look to push the boundaries of rail travel even further. Elon Musk&rsquo;s proposed Hyperloop promises speeds of over 700 mph. If this comes to fruition, train speeds could even surpass those of planes, opening a whole new world of travel possibilities.</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" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ftrain-vs-plane-travel-which-is-right-for-you&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FTrain%2520vs.%2520Plane%2520Travel_%2520Which%2520Is%2520Right%2520for%2520You_.jpg&amp;description=Train%20vs.%20Plane%20Travel%3A%20Which%20Is%20Right%20for%20You%3F"></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/Train%20vs.%20Plane%20Travel_%20Which%20Is%20Right%20for%20You_.jpg" alt="Train vs. Plane Travel: Which Is Right for You?" 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/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/train-vs-plane-travel-which-is-right-for-you">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-take-a-7-day-cross-country-road-trip-for-350-or-less">How to Take a 7-Day Cross Country Road Trip for $350 or Less</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-save-big-on-last-minute-travel">How to Save Big on Last-Minute Travel</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/7-common-travel-myths-that-people-need-to-stop-believing">7 Common Travel Myths That People Need to Stop Believing</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/9-ways-to-travel-big-on-a-tiny-budget">9 Ways to Travel Big on a Tiny Budget</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-get-to-machu-picchu-and-back-for-30">How to Get to Machu Picchu and Back for $30</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel affordable travel frequent flyer miles plane travel train travel train trips travel budget travel tips Fri, 20 Apr 2018 08:30:05 +0000 Nick Wharton 2133482 at http://www.wisebread.com