4 Ways to Travel on a Budget This Fall

4 Ways to Travel on a Budget This Fall

If budget is a concern, it doesn’t mean you have to stay home. You have options!

By Erin M.

As we round the bend through the second part of the year, our vacation days are dwindling and so is our travel budget. Some would-be family travelers might hesitate before planning another trip in order to save money. Not me! There’s no need to stay home if you consider these four ideas for budget travel this fall:

1. Let the Sale Choose the Destination
“The cobbled streets of Montreal or beachfront in the Bahamas?” was a question we were asking ourselves recently. We had planned on visiting Montreal, Canada, for a while and thought September would be the perfect time. But after looking into the flights, we discovered that the prices were not favorable for our budget, but flights to the Bahamas were! I had to be flexible and “re-climatize” my vacation expectations a little.

Budget Travel guru Clark Howard has even suggested that travelers should “buy the travel deal first, then figure out why you want to travel there.” That may sound counter-intuitive, but if you’re like me and want to go anywhere and everywhere, it works. To help keep up with the latest flight deals, sign up for email alerts on Airfarewatchdog. You can choose how often and for which destinations you want to be alerted.

2. Embrace the Season
Attend a fall festival! Festivals are usually free or low-cost and are a great way to experience a region’s culture and community. In my hometown of Atlanta, there are so many festivals during the autumn months, making it a great time for first-timers to visit and see the city at its best. Some of the national festivals that occur annually in fall in Atlanta include: DragonCon, a huge multi-media and pop culture convention; the Yellow Daisy Festival, one of the nation’s most popular arts and crafts festivals; and Music Midtown, a weekend of musical performances at one locale.

That said, Atlanta is certainly not the only city with fall festivals. Harvest celebrations abound throughout the United States for every fruit, vegetable or nut that’s harvested in autumn. Some notable fall festivals include: the National Apple Harvest Festival in Arendtsville, Pennsylvania, the Sonoma County Harvest Fair in Sonoma, California, the Keene Pumpkin Festival and the Warrens Cranberry Festival in Warrens, Wisconsin.

3. Try Camping
Accommodations don’t get much cheaper than camping! Autumn is our family’s preferred season to camp because there are fewer bugs, temperate weather and smaller crowds than the summertime. If you’re planning to experience a fall festival, why not find a nearby national park and book a campsite?

With the fall foliage starting its debut as early as September in Maine and lasting through November in the southern states, the “color show” is enough reason to pile the kids in the car for a road trip. The National Park Service has a user-friendly website that lists all the national parks by state. I also like Reserve America’s site because it allows you to search for any type of camping in proximity to your destination. It also has a lot of helpful links and articles about camping and RV-ing.

4. Redeem Points for Tickets
Using credit cards to accrue airline miles, hotel points and theme park discounts is standard practice for savvy travelers these days. But did you know you could also use credit card points to buy tickets to amusement parks and other activities? We recently redeemed some of our accrued points for tickets to Busch Gardens to keep our spring break budget in check.


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Word to the wise, however: when we redeemed those points online, we received vouchers, which were NOT the same as tickets. When we arrived at the park, we had to “cash in” our vouchers for tickets, which required standing in a long queue. If I had known that in advance, we would have arrived earlier. Read the fine print so you know what to expect and can anticipate delays.

Autumn is a great time to travel, get outdoors and see a different part of the country. By using some of these suggestions, you can do just that, all while staying within your family’s travel budget. Safe travels!

You May Also Enjoy:

Best Fall Travel Destinations

7 Easy Ways to Save Money on Vacation

3 Must-have Apps for Road Trips with Kids

Tips for Vacationing During the School Year

Erin M. writes for Hilton Mom Voyage and is a native Floridian who has resided in Atlanta since 1995. When their younger daughter was just three months old, they packed their belongings and moved to Luxembourg, where they lived for four wonderful years. Even with two small children in tow, they traveled at every opportunity, and during their stay, visited 16 countries. The sense of wanderlust they gained there has stayed with them, and they travel to new destinations whenever they can.

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Nice post regarding small budget traveling. Certainly the part of making trips with campers and RVs is the one that touched me. It make sense to travel with an RV in order to avoid accommodation charges plus the comfort and luxury feeling that RVs give is something out of this world. Also, if you aren't have any camper, then you can ship it to your home through some reputed RV shipping contractors like http://www.wewilltransportit.com/rv-shipping which gives 24*7 shipping services.

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