Author Archives: Wife with Baggage

Winter Sports on a Shoestring Budget

Life and travel are about choices: choosing where to go, choosing when to go, choosing how to go. There is not always a “right” or “wrong” choice, but there are something less expensive, more budget friendly choices. When it comes to snow sports, this Florida girl is no expert. So, we have collaborated with other travelers to bring you tips on how to explore more in the snow while spending less.

Tis the season to go skiing, or snowboarding or even sledging but winter sports are expensive, right? Not necessarily. Although winter sports, skiing, in particular, are often seen as a luxury sport/vacation for the well-off and well-to-do, it is possible to hit the slopes on a shoestring – you just have to put your savvy hat on and find ways of cutting down on your expenses. To get you started, here are some things you can do to ski for less:

Low-Cost Clothing – If you’re not a regular skier or snowboarder, then the cheapest way to kit yourself out with all of the ski clothing you’ll need to stay warm, safe and comfortable on the lopes is by borrowing it from a  ski-loving friend. If you can’t do that, then instead of heading to you local ski store or outdoor clothing places, check discount stores like TJ Maxx and even places like Walmart, which often have at least some of the things (hats, gloves, warm jackets) that you’ll need at a fraction of the price the ski set are probably paying for it.

Rent Your Equipment – Vail Ski Rentals start at $52.00 a day, and a set of skis can cost hundreds of dollars, even for the cheaper models, so it makes sense if you aren’t committed to regular winter sports vacations, to rent your equipment, whether it be skis, snowboards or sledges. Obviously, if you do plan to make it a regular thing, then you’ll be better off investing in the equipment you need for keeps.

Don’t Go in December – December might be the month that you most associate with all things snowy and cold as a traveler, but if you want to get a cheap winter sports break, then January-March is usually the best time because there is a little less demand then – the kids are back at school, and the desire for winter sporting fun isn’t quite as high as it is early in the winter.

Pick a Package Deal – When you’re booking your snowboarding trip, it’s a good idea to choose a package deal, where catering is included in the deal. Why? Because eating out in a lot of ski resorts, even the cheaper ones, can be pretty expensive, especially when compared to these kind of package deals. At the very least, consider hiring a private chalet. This will enable you to cook affordable food for yourself.

Choose a Budget Resort – Skiing might conjure up images of decadent lodges where you can recline with the finest wines, take a sauna and rub shoulders with the rich and famous, but it doesn’t have to be like that, and for most of us it won’t be. If it’s winter sports on a shoestring you require, then there is no shortage of budget resorts, that although they aren’t Whistler or Cloisters, are great places too, y’know get down to it and have fun on the slopes. Gora, located in Slovenia and Sestriere in Italy are two good examples of budget resorts that deliver fun and, yes a little of the luxury (although on a much smaller scale) than some of the big names.

Have fun in the snow!

The Top Three Places in Australia to Visit

Everyone who is travelling to Australia has no doubt heard of the beautiful Sydney with the stunning icons of the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge. However, there is so much more to Australia than this bustling metropolis. As the sixth largest country in the world by landmass, you’re going to get a bit of everything when travelling; from outback country Australia to glistening waters of the reefs to the tree-lined streets of country towns. If you’re still not convinced check out my personal picks for top 3 places in Australia to visit!

NINGALOO REEF – You’ve probably heard of the Great Barrier Reef in Queensland, however very few travellers have heard of Ningaloo Reef on the other side – Western Australia. Ningaloo is just as beautiful as the Great Barrier and is home to a wide array of marine life, but just doesn’t draw the crowds like the Great Barrier. If you’re lucky to be visiting during March to July, you can have a once in a lifetime experience of swimming up close and personal with whale sharks, dugongs, manta rays, and dolphins as it’s part of their migratory path!

The 14 hour drive from Perth to Ningaloo is a road trippers dream with beautiful stops along the way. However, for those that don’t love the idea of the 14 hour drive, you can find flights to Exmouth from Perth!


WHITSUNDAY ISLANDS – If you’re looking for heaven on Earth, it doesn’t get better than the Whitsunday Islands with their crystal clear turquoise waters and white sands! Home to Australia’s best beach by TripAdvisor – Whitehaven Beach, the Whitsunday Islands are a must see when travelling Australia. The islands boast average water temperatures of 26°C during the warmer months, and that in itself warrants enough reason to visit right? Spend your stay snorkelling, paddle boarding, kayaking, or simply laying on the beach with a good read! The best way of getting to The Whitsundays is to catch a flight to Proserpine.


ULURU – Not very many people would travel to see just a rock. However, Uluru is so much more than just a rock. Uluru is located in the heart of Australia, with significant ties to Aboriginal Australians. As an Australian, there is something so beautiful and almost ethereal about seeing Uluru at sunrise. To see the sun rise over Uluru, and to see it so clearly standing out among the Australian outback scenery is awe-inspiring. If you’re not looking forward to driving through the Australian outback in scorching temperatures, you have the choice of booking flights to Uluru.


Hopefully, now that you’ve got a glimpse at what else Australia has to offer you’ll want to explore more of this scenic country. However like I previously mentioned, Australia is a big country and with 80% of the population living on the coast line. So get out there and explore this great big nation!

While this post was not written by me, Diane, I loved the content so much that we decided to publish it here. A big shout out to Alex for such a great article on Australia. Alex is a 23-year-old lover of life, interior design & adventure. After moving to Sydney upon finishing a journalism degree, he began his blog Inspire A Better Life to positively influence others to get out there and see all life has to offer. Join Alex as he discovers this life one day at a time, documenting his thoughts along the way!

Common Mistakes People Make When Booking a Vacation

We all make mistakes. But, why not avoid them when you can. We collaborated with travel lovers who want you to avoid loosing time, your money and your patience. So, while I (Diane) did not write this post, I liked it enough to publish here on Wife with Baggage. ENJOY!

Most of us don’t get to go on holiday too often. So, when we do, it’s something that consumes our entire year, or two. We spend ages researching all of the best places to visit, and then we spend the rest of the year fantasizing about the trip itself. Therefore, it can be very disappointing when your holiday does not turn out how you expected it to. To make sure this does not happen, avoid the following mistakes…

Not taking out travel insurance – A lot of holidaymakers overlook the importance of travel insurance. However, your trip can soon turn sour when your baggage does not arrive and you realise you need to foot the bill of all the clothes and belongings you have lost. And, that’s without even mentioning how expensive it could get if you suffered an illness or injury while abroad…

Rushing your accommodation selection – Of course, you’re excited! You can’t wait to book your holiday and post a status on Facebook. However, you need to take the time to make sure the place is suitable for you. For example, if you are looking for somewhere comfortable and budget-friendly, yet with all of the facilities you need, consider Best Western Executive Inn and hotels of a similar standard. Alternatively, if you are travelling in a big group, it may be better to rent a holiday home. Make sure you check out the map and determine where exactly your accommodation is based and how easy it will be to get to different places.

Booking through someone you don’t know – The Internet is home to a wealth of travel options. However, you need to do your research before you book your trip. The last thing you want to do is book your holiday, only to find that the company goes bust or has a terrible reputation.

Booking too late – A few years ago, you used to get the best deals if you booked your holiday closer to the time. This is no longer the case. Holidays only get more expensive. Plus, you can give yourself a lot of stress by leaving booking your trip until the last minute, especially if you are going away as a group. You may find that you all need to get different flights, for example.

Not checking TripAdvisor – TripAdvisor is a must for anyone that is booking a holiday. You will be able to read tons and tons of reviews. It can be incredibly insightful. If you search the reviews for certain keywords, you will be able to find out everything you want to know – even the finer details of your exact hotel room. Remember to consider the reviews as a whole; don’t let one comment determine your entire judgement.

If you can avoid the five mistakes mentioned above when booking your next holiday, you will give yourself a much greater chance of vacation success. A lot of research and a bit of caution can go a very long way.

California Dreaming: Holiday Highlights For Your Wishlist

We love California! We love Southern Cali, Northern Cali, the beaches, valleys, mountains and vineyards! It only makes sense that we would collaborate with others to bring you more information about this vast state. While not written by me, Diane, I liked the content of this article enough to publish it here on Wife with Baggage. I hope it encourages, educates and entices you to travel more!

When you’re making your travel wish list around America, you really do need to spend time in California. From the gorgeous beaches to some of the greatest amusement parks in the world, there is a lot to discover in the Golden State. So, if you are planning your next holiday adventure, here are some of the places we think you need to visit.

Family fun at Disneyland – Okay, we won’t mention Mickey or anything related to Disney again on this list. However, as this is the most popular theme park in the world, it has to be at the top of most California wishlists! With some of the greatest and most exhilarating rides ever created, topped off with incredible firework displays and grand parades, there is something for everyone at Disneyland. Our advice is this: there is so much to see, you may need to spend a few days exploring everything. While you could stay on site, forego the expense and stay at Holiday Inn La Mirada, and make use of their bus shuttle service. Your wallet will thank you for it!

Wine tasting in Napa Valley – There is a lot to explore around Napa Valley, but most people come here for the incredible wine tasting. The winemakers here have been perfecting their craft for over a century, so if you are somebody who has a taste for a vintage red or white, the wineries here are a must-stop place to visit. Of course, you shouldn’t visit every one of them, as there are around 400 wineries in the region. So, unless you’re planning on camping out under the stars, plan your route and pick out which tipple particularly takes your fancy.

Venture to The Hollywood Sign – Aside from Mickey Mouse (blast, we mentioned him again), the Hollywood Sign is one of California’s most famous attractions. Climb the hillside, and grab your smartphone for the ultimate selfie! You may never make it as a movie star, but at least you got your five minutes of fame with the sign itself. Of course, there is more to the Hollywood experience than the famed sign. Taking up an article unto itself, these are the other experiences movie buffs should consider during their stay in California.

Sun, sea and sand on the California beaches – You can’t come to California and avoid the beaches, whether you are planning on sunbathing for the afternoon, or daring to take on some of the waves in the so-called Surf City. There are probably beaches near to where you live, but we bet none are as action packed as these sun-soaked holiday spots. And there are so many of them! Santa Monica has its amusement parks and festival food. Venice Beach has an urban street circus and quirky flea markets. Laguna is perfect for a game of volleyball and an afternoon of relaxing. Crystal Cove is a place of adventure for would-be explorers, with hiking and mountain bike trails. No wonder the Beach Boys crooned about them so heartily.

Finally – There is something for everyone in California, and so much more than we had opportunity to list here. The Golden Gate Bridge? Chinatown? Death Valley? Take your pick, and continue your research to create a perfect bucket list of everything you want to see and do.

Just Another Perfect Day, Why I Love LA

We love California! We love Southern Cali, Northern Cali, the beaches, valleys, mountains and vineyards! It only makes sense that we would collaborate with others to bring you more information about this vast state. While not written by me, Diane, I liked the content of this article enough to publish it here on Wife with Baggage. I hope it encourages, educates and entices you to travel more!

You might already be thinking about summer vacations if this cold weather is making you feel a little blue. Let’s try something. Visualize a beautiful golden beach with gorgeous views of the bay and behind you a wealth of glorious shops to visit. A little over the horizon you know there’s a wide array of fun family adventures to enjoy. Are you there? Are you on the beach? Now sigh as you long and wish this could be a reality. But what if I were to tell you that it could be if you book a trip to LA this year. Here are a few reasons why you would be crazy not to visit the city filled with love and life.

Shops, Shops, And More Shops – If LA is known for anything, it’s known for its incredible shopping district. The place has more stunning shops than residents know what to do with and that’s why tourists regularly commit a day or so of their time in LA to shopping. There, tourists can enjoy buying some of the best, most incredible brands on offer. If you can’t find a shop that suits you in LA, then your clearly not looking hard enough. And don’t forget that this is the city of stars. So, as you wander through the stores, don’t be too shocked when you see some of Hollywood’s favourite stars wandering the streets too. This is perhaps one of the only places in the world where you can end up rubbing shoulders with the rich and the famous.

LA Beaches – They’re famous and often regarded as some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. They also have a rather unique aesthetic, with palm trees lining the edge of the beach. Lie back, take in some of the sun’s rays or go for a dip in the cool, clear waters. Of course, it’s arguably the sidewalks next to the beaches where the action really is. Here you’ll find sports enthusiasts, rollerbladers that make the balancing act look oh so easy and even a few outdoor gyms!

Beverly Hills, That’s Where I Want To Be – Are you not content to rub shoulders with the stars shopping? Why not go take a peek at some of their beautiful houses? You’ll find them dotted around Beverly Hills and some of the designs of these mansions are absolutely staggering. Indeed, many homes here are less houses and more private resorts with just four people living there. If you are taking a trip to Beverly Hills, it’s best to rent a car in Los Angeles. That way, you’ll be able to take your own route through the star-studded streets, rather than sitting in a sweaty, crowded tour bus.

Wicked Worlds – Of Course, LA is also home to a few major theme parks that kids and families are sure to love including the incredible Wizarding World of Harry Potter. It’s one of the only places in the world where you can board the Hogwarts Express and share incredible experiences from the wizarding world universe like drinking butterbeer or perhaps even feeling what it’s like to fly.

With so much to see and do it’s not an exaggeration to say that LA is a place you must visit at least once in your life.

Beyond the Grand Canyon: Arizona’s Other Awe-Inspiring Attractions

A trip to Arizona is usually defined by a single attraction: the Grand Canyon. And while there is no doubt that this is a place that you have to see at least once in your life, there are a host of other attractions which get overshadowed in Arizona. It is those that we are going to talk about in this article to give you some inspiration if you are planning a trip out to this part of the world.

Monument Valley – On the border between Arizona and Utah, Monument Valley Navajo Tribal Park has a landscape that feels like it has been lifted directly from the Wild West. In fact, it has been used as the primary location in a number of western movies. Towering sandstone buttes and jagged rock formations loom all around. You can either take a guided tour or simply drive your way around the area.

Havasu Falls – The 100-foot Havasu Falls is another special natural wonder in Arizona, but one that fewer people know about. The water has a turquoise-look and when the river is flowing at full force, it appears that there are two falls due to the fork in it. Some basins have been carved out by the local Havasupai Indians to form some picturesque bathing pools.

Hoover Dam – One of the world’s greatest feats of engineering, the Hoover Dam links Nevada and Arizona via the Colorado River. The largest artificial lake in the world (an incredible 110 miles long), Lake Mead is held back by the Hoover Dam and contains as much as two years flow of the Colorado River.


Sedona – The beautiful town of Sedona is set against some classic Arizona rugged scenery. Stop on any street corner and you are sure to enjoy some fabulous views. The Holiday Inn Hotel & Suites Scottsdale North – Airpark provides a good base if you want to stay close to the nearest airport. Hiking and mountain biking are two of the most popular activities to enjoy while you are staying here, but you can also take a jeep tour if you prefer to sit back and enjoy the landscape.

Petrified Forest National Park – In the heart of the Painted Desert, this national park gets its name from the large pieces of petrified wood, and fossilized plants, fish and reptiles which have been discovered in high quantities. You can drive past many of the main attractions yourself, while the visitors centre gives you a good starting point to discover the history of the park. 

In the great state of Arizona, these are just five of the other places that you can visit beyond the Grand Canyon. While the aforementioned natural wonder obviously takes centre stage, each one of the other places we have mentioned is well worth a visit. Each state in the US has its own identity, and if you visit everywhere that we have mentioned above, you will be able to appreciate Arizona on a much deeper level.

Only The Best: How To Inject A Little Luxury Into Your Trip

You guys know I preach budget, saving as often as possible and rationale thinking. But, traveling, no matter how much we think we need it, is a luxury; plain and simple. I get that. So, here and there, you should pamper yourself. I have plenty of tips on how to save, but I’ve collaborated with other travel-loving people, and they’ve complied a list of ways to splurge, indulge and escape. So, while this post is not written be me, Diane, I like the content enough to publish it on Wife with Baggage. Enjoy!

There are a lot of different ways to travel. You might decide to rough it in the wilderness with nothing between you and the elements but a canvas tent and your own survival instinct. Or maybe you want to go on a city break and enjoy the culture and nightlife of a new place Not matter what you choose there really is no wrong answer when it comes to travel. However, no matter what kind of trip you take, there can come a time when you want just a little bit of luxury added to it. There’s nothing wrong with that; it’s often nice to take the opportunity to add one little bit of luxury to a trip, even one that’s pretty simple the rest of the time. With that in mind, here are a few ways to add some luxury to any trip.

Travel in style – One thing that a lot of people would agree on is that the least pleasant and most stressful part of travelling, ironically, the travel itself. Sitting on a stuffy plane or in a cramped car can be a total nightmare. So why not go the extra mile and travel in style? When people hear terms like “private jet” they think of millionaires and celebrities. And sure, that’s fair enough, after all only those people could afford to fly private planes everywhere. But taking a private jet as a one-off luxury isn’t going to hurt anyone! You can learn more here about just how simple it is to hire a private plane for your trip. Whether you’re having a bachelor party, a romantic trip away, or a family vacation, there’s nothing wrong with adding some luxury to your journey.

Get accommodated  – Even if you love taking a budget trip where you’re sleeping rough or in simple hostels, there’s nothing wrong with wanting a little bit more out of where you’re staying for at least one night. So why not spend one night of your trip in some luxury accommodation? Shamelessly enjoy things like room service and a huge comfy bed, safe in the knowledge that there’s no reason to worry about the bill since it’s only going to be for one night! Sure, you might want to stay for the whole trip, but it’s much more of an exciting addition to your trip if you just use it the once so you can savor it.

Treat yourself – Most vacation destinations have plenty of places where you can go and treat yourself. Whether it’s somewhere to go shopping or a spa where you can relax with some wonderful treatments, there’s nothing wrong with taking a day just to totally spoil yourself, especially if the rest of your trip consists of you sleeping rough in the cold!

One of the nice things about having this one bit of opulence on an otherwise simple trip is that you can budget for it much more effectively. Rather than shelling out cash on your trip and then adding to the bill, you can save money from the start and have more in your pocket for those little extra luxuries.

Find a Home Away from Home on Your Travels

We collaborated with other travel writers to bring you this post. So, while I, Diane, did not write this post I hope it educates you, encourages you and empowers you to travel more!

There was a switch that occurred for me and Mike. We began our travels on a smaller budget and even less world knowledge. But then, the more we made in our careers, the more we traveled, the more loyalty points we earned and then BOOOM! We were hotel snobs.

And then, another shift happened. We realized that there was more to travel that fancy resorts, chain hotels and points. While we are still lovers of nice amenities, we realize that we didn’t have to sacrifice comfort and quality for unique, local, unique accommodations.

Furnished Apartments – Furnished apartments are the best thing for families away from home. Like hotels, they have sufficient and comfortable places to sleep. They are warm, often with heating or air conditioning options. They have working electrics for things like hairdryers, radios and other appliances. They will also have a bathroom, most likely with a shower or bath so that you can keep on top of your toilette too! But as well as the comforts of a hotel, you get extra benefits with furnished apartments, such as a kitchen space to prepare meals in and a living space to lounge about in.

Campervans and Mobile Homes – If you’re staying closer to home and just fancy a simple weekend getaway to the seaside or another city, why not try out a campervan or motorhome? This solves two of your problems in one. You have a means of getting about, but you also have somewhere to stay overnight. While this may not be the ideal solution for a lengthy trip (space is limited, and you may feel a little overwhelmed stopping in a van for extended periods of time), it’s great for shorter breaks. You can make these vehicles super comfortable with cosy mattresses, curtains to block out the light (and for privacy), and even kettles or microwaves in the kitchen space.

Cottages and Log Cabins –If you’re considering a more rural getaway, far from the sights, sounds, and chaos of the city, you should take a look at different cottages and log cabins that may be available. Much like furnished apartments, these supply you with all of the essentials for a comfortable retreat. However, they are a little more isolated. This is great for those who are looking for quality time together without distractions or complaints from nearby neighbours.

So, get searching and give your family the getaway that they deserve. These different options will allow you to stray from your home turf without sacrificing any essentials or home comforts.

Choosing Your Baggage for International Travel

Wife with Baggage was carefully chosen as the name for this website as the double meaning is not lost on me. I believe everyone has the proverbial “baggage,” and I’m so thankful that Mr. Wife with Baggage accept me as is. I’m also thankful he likes to pack his baggage and jet set around the world with me! We have rolling suitcase, weekend bags and rough and ready backpacks. We use them all. The baggage we choose depends on the location. I teamed up with another writer to give you insight on how they chose their baggage for their trip to India, a place I’ve yet to travel through. So, while this content was not written by me, Diane, I hope you find it educational, empowering and engaging.

India is a beautiful country and you must be excited to visit it. With so many cultures and religions, even 10 days wouldn’t be enough to know India to the core. You must be well aware about the numerous spiritual places located in India and it has been known for yoga and meditation. Along with it, there is Taj Mahal and other beautiful tourist sites which people all around the world love to visit. But, India is also a country of unpredictable weather and a large population. Some areas and markets can get too crowded. In most areas, it can rain at times you weren’t expecting. Which is why, when you are traveling to India, you should take care what you pack and in which luggage you pack. There are different kinds of luggage available online and you should keep in mind the essential requirement.

Make sure the luggage is of good quality – Since, you would need to travel in taxis and trains, you must make sure that our luggage is strong enough to survive the haphazard railway stations. You know how in airplanes as well the baggage handlers don’t always respect the luggage. It could be kicked, dragged and what not. Your bag should be durable enough so you are able to carry the same bag, your entire trip.

It should be waterproof – Even your small backpack that you would carry around should be waterproof. You might be on your feet in the markets when it suddenly starts to rain. In that case, you need to carry extra clothing and a bag that doesn’t let the water get inside.

Wheels are important – There are many muddy roads in India, filled with dust. You would require rolling the bag on rough areas. Two wheel bags are easier to maneuver when you are on uneven paths. Make one bag from my travel luggage that you would carry with you at all times a bit smaller as you might hop into vehicles which don’t have a big storage space. You might want to shop a lot from India as the local stores supply clothing and other items at such affordable rates. The styles are different and in no time you might have your hands full. If you had a carry bag, it would be so much easier to roam around the streets. A small sling wouldn’t do. Don’t leave everything in your hotel room.

Caution –  Unfortunately, when you would be travelling to different cities via train, you would need to be very careful about your luggage. It could get stolen. Don’t trust any strangers who say they would help carry your baggage as they aren’t reliable. Other than that, people in general would love to help you and you are going to have an experience which you never had in any other part of the world. It is not about the cities in India, it is about the people.

Don’t Book Your Holiday! (Until You’ve Read These Money Saving Tricks)

Y’all know how much I harp on saving money before and during travel so that you can, well, travel more! I’m not alone!  Some of my other writing buddies collaborated with me to come up with this list. While it is not written by me, Diane, I hope it educates, engages and empowers you to travel more!

Going on holiday can quickly spiral into a really expensive couple of weeks.  Flights, hotels, connecting transport, activities when you’re there, drinks, food – it all adds up! And that list doesn’t even include any shopping while you’re there or spontaneous spending.

Try to save up for your holiday before you go by putting a little bit of money aside each month. If you are planning a big holiday next year, go for a cheaper holiday this year and put your savings aside. This way you can save for the trip of a lifetime without losing out. There are some great money saving techniques that will put you on the right track for that holiday budget, but what can you do to save when you get there?

If you are smart about money and have an interest in being frugal, you will need these insider tricks to make holidays work for you and your wallet. 

Rent an Apartment – This might sound counter-intuitive but renting an apartment can be a much cheaper solution if you are travelling as a family or large group. It will mean that you are essentially self-catering but that is probably going to be better than most budget hotel breakfasts anyway! If you are doubtful, have a look at this list of the top 100 popular condos for rent in Malaysia and then check out the hotel prices. You are definitely getting more for your money with an apartment!

Self Cater – If you love cooking at home then you’ll be glad to hear that cooking on holiday is pretty much the same! Of course, you can mix it up with going out to eat but even if you cook for just a couple of nights over the week, sort out your own breakfasts and lunches, you will be saving a significant amount and probably be eating better than you would have as well. Find a good supermarket at the start of the week and stock up on what you need.

Go for Local Bars and RestaurantsLots of resorts have bars and restaurants that are geared toward tourists and will probably be more expensive than they should be. A great holiday hack is to go where the locals go. Not only will this give you better value for money, it is also a great way to get to know another culture and how they eat rather than just another burger bar. Street food is also a great way to eat and to experiment with new foods. It will also give your more time to wander around and explore as you go rather than wasting your precious time sat waiting for service.

Only Use Wi-Fi Never Data RoamingIt is so easy to forget that your data roaming is on and when you’re on holiday it can end up costing you a fortune. And worse – you won’t even realise what’s happening until it’s all too late to solve the problem. The best thing to do is to switch off data roaming before you switch your phone off for take-off. This way, by the time you get there, you won’t need to remember all of a sudden and it won’t have the chance to up your bill.

Flight PlanThere are lots of things you can do to make sure you get the cheapest flights possible. If you aren’t a fussy traveller, you could easily just look up the cheapest flights from your nearest airport and book on. But, if you are a more of a planner, consider travelling midweek for the best deals and booking between 6-8 weeks before you want to go.

However, school holidays can really mess this plan up and because there are so many families going at the same time, prices will rocket as you get closer. For school holidays, ignore the 6-8 week rule and book as soon as you possible can. Like, right now.

One sneaky bit of advice that everyone should use in all their internet shopping is to use an incognito browser and clear your cookies. As you browse, some websites will track your movements and raise prices as you go. This means that by the time you are ready to purchase, that great deal is not so great anymore. Clearing the cache will return you to the original great price – get in there and don’t do any more browsing before you pay!

Get a Great Exchange Rate – For lots of holiday destinations, you are going to need to get currency and exchanging ahead of time by pre-ordering your money will definitely get you better rates. You may wish to take your own credit and debit cards with you on holiday as well, but unless you are travelling for a long period of time, only use these as a back up. Most ATMs will charge a fee so only use them if you really need to.

Get a Map and Do Some Research – Guided tours are a great way to get to know a place, but they are also easy to do yourself. Take some time to do some research online and get a map to plan your own tour around your resort. If you do this early on, you will get feel for the place and find other free opportunities for later on in the holiday. Lots of national parks and beaches make for a great day out for free so stock up on those and let those tourist groups pass you by.

Holidays are a chance to relax and enjoy yourself and we so often confuse these things with the need to spend money. Rather than blowing your budget on unnecessary things, make smart choices and make the most of what you have. Of course, saving money in one area doesn’t mean that you have to save money everywhere. If you have gone self-catered then why not put that extra cash you’ve saved towards an activity you will really enjoy? Find the balance with your cash and the joy will keep on coming.