(Editor's note: Everyone likes to save money, but it is especially important in these economic times. Terrance Zepke has written a book that gives you all the answers in how to save a lot of money when you travel. Read on and become an expert on getting the cheapest fares on everything from resort rooms to tour packages.)
Did you know that you shouldn’t use popular travel sites if you want the lowest prices?
Did you know that there are two dozen different rates for the same hotel room?
Did you know that there are seven categories for cruise lines?
While there is too much information to convey in one article, Terrance has offered these five good money-saving tips and websites to share:
1. Gasbuddy.com. While gas prices have decreased slightly, the cost remains more than $3 a gallon (closer to $4 in some parts of the country), which makes it a major expense that has to be factored into your summer vacation budget. No matter where you are in the United States, you can go to this website or load the FREE app onto your phone (Android, iPhone, Blackberry) to find the nearest gas station with the lowest prices. GasBuddy even provides additional information, such as per gallon price averages nationwide and detailed maps leading you to the station with the lowest-priced gas. This tool can save you up to twenty-five cents a gallon, which really adds up after a few fill-ups.
2. Restaurant.com. Feeding the family is another major expense while on vacation. Buy discounted gift cards to great restaurants to save big money. Participants can choose from 18,000 restaurants (and growing) in popular tourist cities, such as Las Vegas and New Orleans. Here’s how it works: pay $4 and get a $10 gift card or pay $10 and get a $25 card or pay $50 and get a card valued at $100. This equals savings of up to 60%. Just go to their website, place your order, and the cards are shipped to any address with no shipping fee.
3. Bing.com/travel. This is a great tool that most folks do not know about. It allows users to search multiple travel sites, check price predictions, compare rates, and even book travel directly with the supplier of choice. The best thing is that it will give you an accurate forecast as to whether fares will go up or down, which means you’ll know whether you should grab the current fare or wait for a lower rate.
4. Citypass.com. Citypasses are available for many major cities and tourist hot spots, such as Hollywood, New York City, Toronto, Atlanta, San Francisco, and Chicago. The pass bundles admission to popular tourist destinations, including aquariums and zoos, museums, tours, and other attractions. The savings is as much as 50%.
5. Traveltribe.com. This is a good resource for anyone needing help planning their trip. You can connect with other travelers who have “been there and done that” and expert travel agents who will help you, free of charge.
Terrance Zepke has a B.A. in Journalism and a Masters degree in Mass Communications and a lifetime of travel experience. Her parents took her on her first big trip when she was barely three years old. Since that time, the award-winning writer/photographer has traveled to every continent and lived all over the world during her career as a travel writer. She is the author of numerous travel references and several other books. Her many adventures include dog-sledding in the Arctic, piranha-fishing along the Amazon, camel treks in Egypt and Morocco, and hot-air ballooning in the Northern Serengeti. She is in demand as a speaker and has appeared on The Learning Channel, History Channel, and Travel Channel.
For more information on how to save money traveling, check out her book: The Encyclopedia of Cheap Travel: Save Up To 90% on Lodging, Flights, Tours, Cruises, and More! Visit here to learn more about this travel reference book.