It’s late summer and we have already started thinking about this winter. Here in south Florida, we don’t really get a winter. Temperature rarely comes below 50 F. But, we get the last two weeks of December off, so we travel. That’s the best time to travel for us. Also, we are not going to India this year, that means it’ll be winter for travel and sight-seeing. Living in Florida for last 11 years, we love cold, we seek snow and enjoy chill much more than any body else.
The long, cold winter month has the power to bring even the happiest person feeling down and gloomy. However, this should not be the reason for you to not enjoy the snowy season to the fullest. Treat yourself to a holiday around the country by knowing where and how to plan your vacation frugally.
Winter is the best time to enjoy a holiday with your family or friends as there are more offers given away by hotels and resorts, this is best because it will not feel that long until Spring comes along! Shave a few dollars and save your wallet from being exhausted this winter.
But, travelling costs money, so get ready financially for the travel as early as possible. Start saving every month for your upcoming vacation. Do not travel on borrowed money, if you can’t pay back the entire money, you’ll be paying interest for a very long time. People who vacation using credit card cash limit and pay only minimum due every month, end up paying 2-3 time more to the credit card company.
10 Ways to enjoy frugal winter holidays
Then you’ll be able to enjoy the enchanting and magical days of winter. Well, not so magical for those who live up north, I agree.
If you’re traveling by car, be sure to pack your own snacks that are packed in protein and bring along a reusable water bottle. This will save you more since you will not be stopping at gas stations to buy god-awful snacks.
Planning ahead will allow you to get more information about things to do, things to buy and places to stay. Planning ahead can save you money in terms of lower airfare and lower demand. Room rates at skiing destinations get really high during peak and only way to avoid the price is by booking as early as in summer.
(see also – Price vs. Comfort: What Would you prefer while Traveling?)
Be a local
Be sure to ask locals, but approach them in casual but not familiar manner. You can about whereabouts to hang out or eat cheaply. Lodge somewhere where you can stock snacks or simple breakfast items so you don’t spend more on these.
During sunny afternoons, choose to walk and know the locality. Walking during travel is the best way to get familiarize with the place. Walking may lead to adventures you’d otherwise not experience.
Have a staycation!
You don’t have to travel far. Even staying a night or two at the nearest hotel can do you good. Fully utilize the available spa, sauna or indoor heated pool to relax and drift away to another magical island where you can completely be free.
We live near beaches, so, we book beach hotels for a night or two during weekends and enjoy everything the hotel has on offer, including the sauna, massage, pool, private beach and casinos.
Indoor water park
Did you know that there are plenty of Groupon deals worth half the price off for the rooms or deals available at these resorts? Not only will you be cozier, but also you can enjoy wearing your bathing suit all day.
Head to the beach
Almost every beach has resorts and hotels that offer you a room for less than $100 a night. Besides having a great deal like that, you can also enjoy fresh seafood during winter at nearby restaurants.
You may not enjoy the sea bathing but being on the beach in full sun is fun even in winter. There may be exceptional days though when it’s too cold to go outside. In that case checkout the local weather in your destination. Weather not permitting outdoor activities, lookout for hotel with lots of indoor amenities.
Cabin in the woods
These rental cabins can get their prices slashed half off during these times to keep them being rented during this season. A cabin may accommodate a large group, so bring your family and friends along. Enjoy the grill and indoor fun in wild woods. During winter chances are you will get discounted rates.
There’s no dearth of ski resorts in this country. Head to less showy skiing destinations like those in Western Maine or Utah. Stay at lodging places near the highway or airport to reduce your travel expenses, or better, stay over at a relative’s house for free lodging!
Few years back we went to Aspen and Snowmass. Even by February standard, those places were very costly. We ended up staying 20 miles out in Glenwood Springs. Still we enjoyed our ski vacation. Learned a new skill and survived numerous falls during our skiing sessions.
Going on a trip to museums or cultural sites near where you live is a good way enjoy a day out with your family. Visit Washington, D.C, or Philadelphia. Or better, take a self-guided tour around historical monuments.
At least try to watch a 3D movie in an IMAX theater with your kids. Follow it up with a trip to a nature center or local attraction. Last winter my friends went to a week-long Washington DC museum trip with his children. The Smithsonian museums are all indoor and they are so educational.
(See Also – 101 Frugal and Useful Christmas Gift Ideas)
Go to a warmer place
No wonder Florida has it’s peak tourist months in winter. People from north fly to Florida for some warm sun. Going to a warmer place for a week or two can be very relaxing and fun. If you haven’t enjoyed the Florida beaches in bikini in December, you have missed real fun!
Take up packages
There are many travel companies that offer great deal packages for winter holidays. Do some research and choose one that suits you. A group travel is a great way to know the places and people at the same time. As it was once said, the best way to know a person is by traveling with him. So if you have a partner, go with him or her and find out more.
So has the travel bug started biting you after reading this post?
Readers, why you like winter travel and what are your favorite destinations? Send us your advice for winter travelers.
Money Beagle says
For the last two winters, we have taken a mini-vacation to a nearby indoor water park, and that is definitely something we now look forward to. We often have deals come through e-mails now that we’re seen as ‘frequent’ customers.