Summer is here and you’ve saved sensibly to fund your summer vacation. Now where can you go to get the most bang for your travel buck?
We’re betting that someone who’s creative and money savvy enough to have a respectable summer vacation budget is looking for the most value possible.
Here are five money-saving travel tips for sensible spenders looking for a summer escape:
1. The closest national park – America’s National Park System is like no other in the world. Chances are you live within a decent day’s drive of one of its 397 sites, which include national parks, historical sites, monuments, battlefields, nature preserves, recreation areas, seashores, lakeshores and parkways. A national park vacation can be one of the cheapest, most educational and entertaining trips to be had for your travel dollars. Log on to www.nps.gov for ideas and to find the national park site nearest you.
2. For East Coasters, the Caribbean – If you crave fun in the sun and you live on the eastern seaboard, the Caribbean is a sensible choice. It’s easy to find plenty of summer travel deals—both by air and by cruise ship—to this tropical playground. Whether you’re traveling alone, with a group or your family, the region has plenty to offer everyone.
3. For West Coasters, Central America – The countries that make up the Central American isthmus offer a variety of experiences for travelers, from the cosmopolitan, in cities like Panama City, to the natural wonders such as the cloud forest of Costa Rica. The U.S. dollar stacks up well against the local currencies in many of these countries, meaning you can get more for your money.
4. Europe for everyone – The European debt crisis has impacted the travel industry, and you may find some great deals to dream locales. Greece may be struggling with debt, but it’s still a beautiful country that offers one-of-a-kind sights like the Acropolis.
5. The neighboring state – Every state in the union has something unique to offer, whether it’s an unusual natural landscape, like the Grand Canyon in Arizona, a world-class city such as Illinois’ Chicago, or a rich historical heritage such as Savannah in Georgia. Yet you may never have thought about what the state next door has to offer travelers. Check it out! Chances are you’ll waste less time getting to your destination, spend less on lodging, and learn something new, interesting and fun about your neighboring state.