Whether you’re planning a family trip or a spontaneous solo getaway, vacations can add up quickly. According to Business Insider, people spend an average of $1,979 annually on summer vacations between plane tickets, hotel accommodations, activities, and other expenses.
Regardless of your financial situation, finding ways to stretch your budget can help you make the most of your vacation while preparing for unforeseen expenses. From finding the best travel promotions to avoiding unnecessary expenses, here are the best ways to plan an affordable beach getaway.
Decide on a budget.
Whether you’re planning a budget-friendly beach vacation or a once-in-a-lifetime tropical getaway, setting your budget should be your top priority. Budgeting is an essential component of vacation planning, and knowing what you can afford to spend on your holiday makes it easier to choose a destination, book a hotel, and plan your beach itinerary.
When setting your budget, remember that wiggle room is key. Your vacation budget shouldn’t be a fixed rule to follow, but a guide on how to structure your costs and prepare for unforeseen expenses. Incorporating some flexibility can help you make the best spending choices for your budget while providing peace of mind.
Search for travel deals.
Once you create a budget, you’ll have a clear idea of where you can afford to travel. But before booking your plane tickets, be sure to search for travel deals and promotions that can help stretch your budget.
When you purchase tickets through partners or third-party websites that get a small commission, you enjoy great deals with discounts on premium seating, buffet-style meals, open bars, hotels, and more. For example, if you’re planning a beach getaway to Kaanapali Beach, a quick search for discounts can help you take advantage of Drums of The Pacific Luau coupons and other money-saving promotions during your trip.
Choose the perfect spot to stay.
Your lodging accommodations aren’t only a major part of your travel expenses, but they also set the atmosphere for your vacation. Although it might be tempting to choose cheaper lodging accommodations, you should research your options before making a commitment.
With that said, everyone has different priorities when traveling. If you’re traveling with a group of friends, investing in a hostel or camping site might be the best choice for your budget. On the other hand, if you’re planning a Maui vacation with your family, researching well in advance can help you get the best deals at best-in-class hotels like the Westin Maui Resort or Hyatt Regency Maui Resort.
Stock up before your trip.
Packing is always a critical part of the vacation planning process, and packing in advance can help you identify what you need to buy before your trip. Toiletries, clothing, and other essentials at the airport or hotel can be expensive, and you don’t want to drain your vacation budget on avoidable expenses.
To avoid repurchasing forgotten items or overpacking, be sure to write a packing list. This way, if you realize you need beach-friendly loungewear before your trip, you can search for “discount clothing stores near me” to find the best deals. It can also be helpful to check with your hotel or host to see what items (beach accessories, towels, etc.) your accommodation includes, so you don’t need to pack anything unnecessary.
Immerse yourself in local culture.
Immersing yourself in local culture, cuisine, and attractions while on vacation is a must, and it’s important to set aside part of your budget to live like a local. Even if you don’t have much to spend after lodging and plane tickets, researching local foods and attractions before your trip can help you arrive at your destination prepared.
Living like a local adds to the beach getaway experience, but you don’t have to eat out for every meal. Shop for discount groceries, prepare healthy beach snacks, and plan picnics to save money whenever possible.
Whether you’re looking for a relaxing vacation from work or planning a fun family trip, taking the time to prepare and budget before your beach getaway can help you enjoy yourself without breaking the bank.