Retirement is the perfect time to branch out and see the world. However, most seniors have to live on a budget during this time of their life, which can make it difficult to travel. Fortunately, there are ways you can save money on your trip so you can enjoy your golden years without going broke. Here’s how…
First Thing’s First
Sometimes the biggest travel expenses are the ones you don’t expect. The last thing anyone wants is to come home from their trip only to find major damage in their house. Make sure your home is as ready for vacation as you are by investing in some smart cameras that you can check from an app on your smartphone or tablet. Swap out old batteries in smoke and carbon monoxide detectors so you know they are working. If it’s winter, leave your faucets turned on just enough to keep the water moving to prevent them from freezing and bursting. Finally, wrangle a friend or neighbor to stop by every once and a while to check on the house. Having traffic coming in and out deters burglars.
Do Your Research
Travel deals are all around us– you just have to know where to look. For instance, not only can you save as much as 40 percent to 60 percent on a room by checking sites like Hotels.com or Priceline, but if you have a flexible schedule or if you’re looking off-season, there can be even bigger deals out there just waiting for you. Go for the gusto and look for third-party sites where you can find promotional offers or money back opportunities.
Drive Don’t Fly
Traveling by car is almost always going to be cheaper than flying. But driving also gives you the added benefit of enjoying the journey and seeing the sights along the way. If you’re wary about taking your own vehicle on the road for an extensive period of time, consider renting a car. Companies like Enterprise offer deals for specific regions, cities, and countries on top of their everyday low rates. You might even be able to double down on your savings with coupons or weekly promotions if you’re tenacious in your research.
Travel During the Off-Season
Without work obligations tying you down, there’s no reason to wait until the summer to go on a trip. The best deals and rates are offered during the off-season. Of course, the “off-season” is different depending on where you’re going. For instance, while the best time to visit Los Angeles is between March and May, if you want to see humpback whales outside Seattle you want to go in October or November.
Ask for the Senior Discount
Most of us go our whole adult lives without being able to ask for a discount. So when our golden years roll around, it’s easy to forget to ask for the senior discount. But the whole point of these deals for seniors is to encourage us to spend our money and give back to the economy in the later stages of our lives. Take advantage! Even the smallest discounts add up over time.
There are seniors just like you who are interested in expanding their worlds through travel. Websites such as HomeLink or Home Exchange connect adults looking to travel to each other’s cities for house swapping. Not only does this save you money on room and board, but having someone staying at your place during your vacation ensures that your home is safe.
Don’t spend your senior years watching the world go by just because you’re living on a budget. There are tons of ways you can travel without breaking the bank. From deal hunting to house swapping, you don’t have to spend full price on things like flights, rental cars, and hotel rooms.