How To Save Money On A Cruise

How To Save Money On A CruiseWe recently went on our first cruise and it was a lot of fun. We went on a seven day long cruise to the Caribbean that left from a port in southern Florida.

This was our very first cruise, and we had a lot of questions because of that. We didn’t know how anything worked, and it was even a little overwhelming since we’ve never traveled this way before.

Cruises can be expensive, or they can be a great way to travel for cheap. Below are 4 ways to save money on a cruise:

1. Use rewards points.

Rewards points are my favorite way to get a trip for free. You may be able to book your cruise on points, and you may be able to book your flight to the cruise port for free as well.

With our cruise, we were able to get one roundtrip flight for free. We didn’t have enough points for the second roundtrip flight because we booked the trip at the very last minute.

2. Be flexible with your dates.

Being flexible with when you go on your vacation can usually save you hundreds and sometimes even thousands of dollars. A difference of just one week can mean a significant amount of savings, so it is something to keep in mind.

You might try searching for different dates for the same cruise that you are interested in going on. You will most likely find at least some what of a price difference and this may help you save money.

It is also important to also think about the weather of where you are going to. Saving money might not be worth it if you have horrible weather on your trip.

3. Skip the specialty restaurants.

I know that some people are completely against this, but if you are looking to save money on your trip then you may try skipping the specialty restaurants on board your cruise ship where you have to pay money to eat. There are usually plenty of amazing restaurants on the ship to eat, so why pay?

We tried a few of the specialty restaurants, and I won’t lie, they were amazingly delicious, but they were also expensive to the point where it wasn’t really worthwhile.

4. Stay in an interior room.

For me, I am a room snob. I like to be comfortable and I like to spend time in my room. I know, I am boring. However, I usually work a lot on vacation so I need a room that is comfortable. Because of that, we had a balcony room.

However, if we would have chosen an interior room, I believe the price probably would have saved us a thousand dollars or more. Interior rooms are usually very cheap, and there are many cruises out there that offer interior rooms for crazy cheap prices such as $199 per person for a 4 day Caribbean cruise. Can’t really beat that!

Have you ever gone on a cruise? How much money did you spend?

 

The image above was taken of a cruise ship next to ours at a port in Mexico.

3 Tips To Increase Your Fuel Mileage on a Road Trip

3 Tips To Increase Your Fuel Mileage on a Road TripI’ve been talking about road tripping a lot on my blog lately. I love road trips, which is funny because I actually used to hate them before.

Now, I just can’t seem to get enough. I love being in the car, talking endlessly, eating yummy snacks, and anticipating the vacation destination.

They are also fun because we are able to bring our dogs on our trips as well.

Road trips can be expensive though, especially if you are going on a long trip. Gas can eat away at any hope of saving money. However, there are ways to save money when it comes to fuel.

To read some of my past road trip related posts, see below:

Below are five tips to increase your fuel mileage when on a road trip.

1. Lay off the gas pedal.

Driving aggressively can really hurt your fuel mileage. You should brake slowly and not harshly, drive the speed limit and not 100 miles per hour, and more. Driving over 80 miles per hour can start to significantly cut into your fuel mileage because cars aren’t equipped to go extremely fast.

Use cruise control, come to a stop slowly (this will prevent accidents as well), drive a steady speed, don’t speed up at a ridiculous rate, and more.

2. Keep up-to-date with car maintenance.

Staying current on your car’s maintenance schedule is very important and it can help to improve your gas mileage. It will also drive more smoothly and prevent many car problems that may occur on a road trip.

Make sure you have a clean filter, regular oil changes, properly inflated tires, and more.

3. Lose some baggage.

Every item that you add to your car can hurt the fuel mileage you receive. It hurts it even more if you have one of the roof cargo boxes and using one of those can actually damage your fuel mileage by up to an extra 25%.

So, before you decide to add hundreds of extra pounds, you may want to analyze what you really need and what you do not. It will make traveling more fun if you aren’t carrying tons of bags into your hotel each time also.

When was the last time you went on a road trip?

How much money did you spend on gas?

 

Should You Rent a Car On Your Next Vacation?

Should You Rent a Car On Your Next Vacation?When going on a vacation, usually the transportation category is one of the biggest expenses.

Once you add together bringing your own car, renting a car, gas, food for during a non-stop road trip, plane tickets, metro tickets, taxis, and everything else, it almost seems like this category is never-ending.

Before you go on your next vacation, you might think about whether or not you want to rent a car. Below are some of the different areas you might want to think about:

Is your car reliable?

If your car usually breaks down or starts acting funny after just 20 miles of being driven, then it may not be your best bet to bring on a far away vacation.

If you are going on a long road trip, then you might want to think about renting a car if your car is not reliable enough.

If you are flying somewhere, such as an island, and you want to see the island, then you might want to look into renting a car as well. I once traveled to a small island with a horrible taxi system, so we rented a car to save a lot of time.

Are there any maintenance costs you can avoid by renting?

If you are going on a long trip, then there are certain costs that may put you over the edge and force you to pay for extra maintenance. For example, if you go 5,000 miles, you might need one or almost two oil changes. That may be an extra $100 or $200 for the trip.

Also, tires. If you go on a 10,000 mile trip, then you will probably be maybe half way or a fourth of the way to needing new tires. That could be a few extra dollars right there as well.

How is the gas mileage on the car you own?

One of our cars gets 15 miles to the gallon. Going any distance in that car can add up very quickly. Renting a car that gets something like 40 miles to the gallon can actually save us a decent amount of money when on a trip and it may actually completely make up for the cost of renting a car. Plus, if you rent a car in this situation, you can avoid putting miles on your car own as well.

How much time do you have?

Before you decide whether or not you will rent a car, you should think about how much time you have and if it’s even possible.

For example, if you only have 4 days for your vacation but your vacation destination is 2,000 miles away, then it may not be very realistic for you to bring your car and also enjoy the actual vacation destination.

Do you usually rent a car when you go on vacations?

 

Image via Flickr by Jesse Davis