Summer travel is one of those necessary evils. Once the weather warms up, all I can think about is being whisked away to someplace fabulous. And because the summer spans three to four months, depending on your location, finding ways to take lasting and/or multiple trips presents several obstacles. Whether it’s limited finances, time or ability to jet away, we’ve got some tips for you to getaway this summer on a dime.

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Susan Breslow, the guide to Honeymoons and Romantic Travel and Mark Kahler–’s Budget Travel Guide recently shared her tips with us. Check them out below!

Susan Breslow Says:

Cheap Girlfriend Getaways:

Las Vegas — if you can handle the dry desert heat. Summer is the off-season and it’s when hotel rates (particularly midweek) are lowest. A couple of months ago, I did a piece on having a bachelorette party in Vegas and the information still applies even if no one in the group is about to walk down the aisle imminently.

The hotels, the pools, the restaurants, the spas, the shopping, the nightclubs are nonpareil and if you don’t overdo it or develop a gambling jones, you can have a great time for surprisingly little. P.S. It’s one of the few places I know where your posse can take a pole-dancing class together!

Cheap Romantic Getaways:

One of the most expensive elements of a trip is transportation, so if you decide to drive to a nearby destination rather than fly to a faraway one, you can save a lot. For a long weekend, choose a place within two to three hours driving distance from home. If you can spend a week together, five hours or fewer is optimal.

Also, you can find bargains out there. I have a piece on where to look for travel deals on Twitter. If you hit it at the right time, you can score something really special at a discount.

Mark Kahler Says:

Easiest Way To Save On Vacation:

The best strategy for saving money on vacation is to do fairly extensive planning. Everyone wants to be spontaneous and you certainly don’t want to schedule every minute of your day. But on major items such as hotel reservations, possible places to eat, admission fees, etc., it pays to know going in what these items will cost so that you can set up a realistic budget.

Prime Locations To Vacation On A Dime:

Every destination offers ways to save money. London and Paris, for example, are quite expensive overall, but offer cheap public transportation and a number of attractions that are either free or generously priced given what they offer to travelers. Latin America and Southeast Asia afford opportunities to eat a great meal for $5 and stay in a decent hotel for $35/night. But getting to Southeast Asia can be so expensive that it becomes nearly impossible to take advantage of the cheap food and lodging that awaits.

Best Bang For Your Buck This Summer:

Although crowded, national parks and state parks bring some of the best summer values. For example, your $25 admission to Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah is good for an entire week and includes an incredible astronomy demonstration and viewing session (conditions permitting).

When traveling in Europe, it’s often economical to stay in Bed and Breakfast accommodations. Unlike North America, B&Bs in Europe often involve staying in a family’s spare bedroom and eating breakfast with the family in the morning. It’s a great way to save money and at the same time experience a slice of everyday life in your destination. The families often have great recommendations about nearby tours and attractions.

Plan ahead and look for big discounts. You won’t always find these in popular summer destinations, so think about going places that are out-of-season in the summer.


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