5 Tips for Money-Saving on a Road Trip

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All over the country the weather is finally starting to warm up, and with melted snow and the shining sun comes the idea of a road trip. Yes, summer is coming, and many of us will be taking time off to hit the road, hopefully with gas prices lowering before then in our favor. Road trips have the potential to save a lot of money, particularly if you are traveling to a destination that would require the purchase of airline tickets for several people.

Still, road trips can be expensive if you don’t plan ahead, and even if you do, the costs can still add up quickly. There are several ways you can save money on a road trip, so read on to learn them. Hopefully saving money will be the positive start to your trip that you need to make it through the many hours in a small, cramped car with your friends or the other people you love.

Source: Thinkstock

Source: Thinkstock

1. Pick the right time to plan and to travel

Many people travel over Memorial Day weekend and and the fourth of July weekend, and road trips are particularly popular those weekends because of the added day off work. In 2013 the expected spending on Memorial Day was $659, which is a hefty price for just a weekend getaway. If you plan to travel during the summer months, try to avoid the holiday weekends because hotels will often be booked, and the available rooms will be more expensive.

There are benefits to planning early, but there are also great deals to be found if you can book hotels last minute. It’s best to plan the dates for your trip ahead of time if your trip involves several people. You also can guarantee more consistent hotel prices, and you might find better deals on activity packages. However, some hotels will lower prices at the last minute if they have rooms to fill, which can save you money if you are willing to take the risk. Traveling off-season will help you save money in general, but especially if you have to stay overnight in a hotel.

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