Travel By Mae Davies / March 22, 2018 Beach vacations can be very revitalizing, but they can also take a big toll on your bank account. Fortunately, there are ways to make your dream vacation a reality, even if you’re on a tight budget. Start Saving Early Make a conscious effort now to start saving and budgeting for your trip. It’s difficult to save unless you have a plan in place. Plan on putting away a certain amount of money each week into a separate account so you aren’t tempted to spend it. Consider a savings app on your phone that helps to save automatically so you don’t even realize it’s happening. No matter which way you decide to save, make sure you start in plenty of time so it doesn’t feel so overwhelming. Research Travel Hacks Do some research on different travel hacks to save money on your trip. For example, you could set an alert for when airline prices drop so you know when to buy. You could opt to use a ride-hailing program or rent a car through an app instead of an agency. There are hundreds of ways to save money on your vacations, but you may learn about them unless you do some research for your trip. Visit During the Shoulder Months If you go to the beach during the peak months, then you’re going to pay peak prices. Since you obviously don’t want to go to the beach when the weather is terrible, try booking your trip during the shoulder months. April and September both tend to have beautiful weather without the crowds, which means you can get lower prices on hotels and other expenses. Double check that there aren’t any festivals or other significant events going on during your week. Avoid spring break or other events, or you could end up paying significantly more. Avoid the Most Popular Beaches Many people start planning vacations to the most obvious places. Instead of going to a beach in Florida, consider trying out beaches off the beaten path. Finding affordable accommodations is much more accessible if you use Hotel Planner to find Orange Beach hotels in Alabama rather than South Beach hotels in Miami. These smaller beaches tend to be more affordable and less crowded, but they offer just as much beauty and as many activities on your vacation. Search for Discounts Before You Go Just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean you want to sit in your hotel and miss out on the full experience. Shop around and search for discounts before you go or book activities in advance to get the best prices. Don’t be afraid to negotiate a better deal when you’re booking excursions as well. You could also consider checking discount sites to get even more savings on activities during your vacation. Beach vacations typically come with pretty hefty price tags. Luckily, if you avoid the obvious beaches, plan ahead, and make a detailed savings strategy, you can have the perfect vacation without the stress and overspending.