Are you looking to satisfy your wanderlust without sacrificing your wallet to the travel gods? If so, you’ve come to the right place. This unique guide places you in some of the nicest hotels in some of the country’s most attractive cities. Luxury doesn’t have to come with a high price tag if you’re savvy and employ some travel hacking. Here are some money saving tips arranged by destination, so you can see and do it all on a budget.
West Hollywood, CA
West Hollywood is a walkable city, so you won’t overspend on public transportation. It’s your hotel selection that will cost the most. Many hotels in West Hollywood are budget-friendly, but you can stay at a luxury hotel for less when you visit during shoulder seasons. You’ll get the best hotel discounts in January, February, late April, and September to November. Choose a hotel that’s nearby the attractions you’re most excited for.
West Hollywood is all about the sites: Grauman’s Chinese Theatre, Sunset Strip, Santa Monica Boulevard, the design district, and more. Beverly Hills, including Rodeo Drive, isn’t too far a jaunt, and there’s The Hollywood Bowl and Dodger Stadium to check out too. To save money, book your tour passes in advance from a reputable discount seller. Many discount sites offer bundle options, which allow you to save as much as 20 percent off your ticket prices.
Disneyland Orlando, FL
A trip to Disneyland is on everyone’s bucket list, but not in everyone’s budget. Time.com created a detailed report to determine the actual cost of a Disney vacation. Their calculations led them to an average price of $6,360 for hotel, transportation, admission, food, and souvenirs. If that number made you think no, uh-uh, nope, you’re not alone. Lots of people would scoff at that price, but luckily there are ways to cut that price down.
- Travel during the off-season. Average temperatures are still warm in February, and you’ll see greater discounts this time of year. Plus, you won’t need any fast passes because the lines are already short during the off-season.
- Book as far in advance as you possibly can, and don’t be afraid to speak one-on-one with their sales people. The chat box on the Disney website is useful when you want to ask if there are any promotions or discount codes you’re unaware of. Tell them your budget, and ask them to help you build a vacation package that works for you.
- Eat breakfast in your room and counter service in the park. If you’re staying at an off-site hotel (so much cheaper), your hotel may offer a continental breakfast, but if not, Orlando is home to lots of budget-friendly gourmet options.
- If you’re on the east coast, drive instead of flying. The Department of Transportation says the average round-trip flight to Orlando costs $350.
New York, NY
The Big Apple comes with the biggest price tag. Investopedia lists New York City as the most expensive city in the country. While there, you deserve a trip to Broadway, shopping in Times Square, and trips to the Empire State Building and the Statue of Liberty. You deserve it all, including 30 Rockefeller Center. You can get into Rockefeller Center for free if you avoid buying tickets for the tour, and opt for free tickets to a live NBC show instead. Every August, free tickets are given out for the year’s upcoming tapings. Here are even more ways to save:
- Do all the free stuff: Central Park, the Brooklyn Brewery, The High Line, and Chelsea’s art galleries. There’s even several free museums, including the American Museum of Natural History.
- Shop for tickets to Broadway and Off-Broadway productions at the Theatre Development Fund where tickets are as much as 50 percent off.
- Shop at Sample Sales instead of expensive boutiques. You’ll find high-quality garments from the world’s greatest designers are prices you can afford.
When it comes to visiting expensive places, this advice is universal. Always sign up for discounts cards in the neighborhoods and at the attractions you’ll be visiting. Follow the things and places you’re planning to see on social media because they will post flash deals. Finally, call ahead and try to haggle pricing and talk to experts, so you can get help making plans that fit your budget.