Tis the season for family vacations which means you may be in the process of planning your next trip. Preparing for your family adventure may feel daunting, and dealing with the expenses that come along with it can be anxiety inducing, but family trips are often filled with moments that create fun memories that last a lifetime. Don’t stress, we’ve got some way to help ease your nerves and keep your bank account happy. Here are five tips to help you plan a fun and budget friendly family vacation.
- Plan and Research
Before you hit the road, do your research to see if there are any discounts or coupons on fun family activities around your destination. You may find great discounts for kids or, even better, that entry for kids is free. Research museums and other tourist sites to see when they are having free or discounted days. Our MarinePerks account also includes essential savings on over 50,000 activities and tours from around the world. Everything from theme parks, to family tours, to boat rides and so much more. Book incredible things at a price you can’t pass up.
- Travel Out of Season
Peak season and holiday weekends are high demand times of year which means a higher price tag. Instead of taking your trip during the regular vacation season, consider the pick-up and drop-off seasons, which are the month before and after peak season. Most tourist attractions will be open and you won’t have to deal with a crowded line of tourists. Air travel is another expense that can add up quickly when you are vacationing with the entire family. You may also be able to snag your plane tickets at a much lower cost depending on the day you fly. The best days to fly out are Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Saturdays.
Our MarinePerks accounts include personal travel agents that will find you the best price guaranteed for you flight. Not only will you know that you are getting the best deal, you will also earn 3% cash back every time you book through MarinePerks. As an added perk, we include the Good as Gold Guarantee - if you find a better price for the exact trip, MarinePerks will double the difference up to $100 in addition to your Cash Back Reward. Another great perk is that trips booked through MarinePerks include $100,000 Automatic Flight Insurance.
- Find Discounts on Room and Board
Just like air travel, hotels can put a huge dent in your budget. With all of the new options like hostels and homestays you can book online, hotels are now working hard to compete. You can use discount sites or you can call the hotel directly. They may be able give you a special rate or possibly find you a room even if none appear to be available online. If you use MarinePerks, we can do the job for you by finding the best priced hotel rooms. Plus, when you book through MarinePerks, you will receive 5% Cash Back Rewards. Are you going to a destination that is more resort oriented? MarinePerks travel services can find you the best deals for one and two-bedroom condominiums in virtually every resort location. Put our travel agents to work for you!
- Research Food and Dining Deals
Before you go, research the best family dining destinations. This way you can inquire about daily specials and even sign up for restaurant coupons. When looking, try to avoid eating on popular tourist streets. You may find some places off the beaten path that are cheaper, more authentic and you can feel good about supporting the local businesses! Instead of eating breakfast out every morning, cut back on costs by searching for hotels that include breakfast. This is also a great way to make sure everyone starts the day off with a nutritious meal, which is helpful in preventing emotional meltdowns, tantrums and fights among siblings.
- Keep Your Money Secure
While on your trip, be careful with your debit card so you don’t have to deal with unwanted charges ruining your vacation vibe. Unfortunately, there is no technology that is 100% safe, but the move toward chip cards has helped cut back on machine skimming. Keep in mind that many businesses are still in the process of transitioning to the chip reader though.
The chip card has a higher level of security because it produces a unique one time token that a hacker can’t reproduce. In response, some hackers have been putting skimmers, a small device attached to card readers, on ATMs, gas pumps, point of sales systems and other places where we swipe our cards.
To avoid the skimmer, check the card reader for tampering. If anything jiggles or is misaligned, especially at a gas pump, don’t use the reader. Even if you don’t feel that you have been compromised, make sure you go through your statement or look at your online banking daily. If you see anything suspicious, stop by one of our branches and we are happy to help you sort it out.
The Marine Bank mobile app and online banking site also allows you to turn your debit card on/off, so you can easily and quickly turn your card off to avoid more unwanted transactions. When traveling, always make sure to bring an extra form of payment. Also, don’t forget to let Marine Bank know you are leaving so we can put a travel notification on your account.
The best tip we can give you is to research, plan and stick to your budget. Combine our tips above and you’ll not only save money, but you’ll also create lifelong memories. Here at Marine Bank, we want to help you save money in any way possible. We’re with you every step of the way. Bon Voyage!
Learn more about all the way MarinePerks can save you money!