1) Travel off-season - I know I just said summer vacation is around the corner, but you can save literally hundreds if you just book trips off season. The money you save could be use for "stay-cations" (local vacations) Try travelling just before or just after peak seasons. You usually get all the nice weather at a fraction of the cost.
2) Try House-Sitting services at your planned destination and avoid those expensive chain hotels. You'll get access to a house or apartment and sometimes even a car. Check out House Carers and Mind My House . A couple of my Favorites are Airbnb.com and vrbo.com. Remember tho, most of these don't have maid service.
3) Bid for Hotel deals. I use name your-price-services such as Priceline and Hotwire all the time and they can easily save you 10% or more, usually more!
4) Booking Last Minute. Most of the time this is counter-intuitive especially when dealing with flights, but if you are looking to go for a tour or cruise book closer to sail date and you could easily save close to 20%. Conversely booking way in advance does the same thing. This is definitely a riskier method of planning a vacation, but if you are a more flexible traveler the savings are more than worth it.
5) Sign up for Travel related Credit Cards. If you use your card for everything you could easily rack up enough miles to pay for your flights. Also, be flexible with your flight times. Mid-week and off peak travel times are best.
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