Remember all the tricks to help beat the winter blues, and how one idea was to go ahead and plan a vacation of some sort? Well, if you are like me, you may have spent more time daydreaming than planning. Since I’m one of the millions stuck under piles of snow these past few weeks, I’ve been particularly drawn to daydreaming about beaches and warm weather. But I haven’t pulled the trigger on any real plans yet, which means I’d better move on planning my spring break trip!

You too? If so, here are 10 tips to save money on your spring break trip:

Become an investigator


Finding frugal deals for a spring break trip can be a tricky business. You will need your best investigation hat, and possibly a partner, to ensure you snag the best possible prices for your spring break trip. Also, be sure you:

  • Watch for deals and discounts – Never pay full price for a trip! With even minimal sleuthing you can find some kind of discounted rate or coupon to save on hotels and airline tickets.
  • Look for packages – Double check sites that offer hotel/air combo packages for greater savings.
  • Load up on freebies – Many ski resorts offer free passes for children, and other hotels often offer free tickets for events and activities to cut entertainment costs.
  • Plan around rates – Try a mid-week trip to ensure best possible rates since weekends are when prices can almost double, particularly during spring break.
  • Plan around meals – It may sound crazy at first, but food costs are usually one of the biggest expenses for a spring break trip. If  you can plan on staying near a grocery store or finding good deals on eating out, you can really maximize a limited budget.

Think outside the box


Time to put your thinking cap on as well. Sometimes the best spring break trip is the one a bit off the beaten path. For example, we’ve found most of these tricks have granted us incredible and interesting adventures for very little cost:

  • Stay on the outskirts – Sure, everyone likes to be in the center of it all. But that’s also the problem! Scout out a place to stay a little further from the action and you are guaranteed lower prices.
  • Act like a local – Wherever you go, check out the local scenes for free activities, transportation, and events. Often you’ll  have the added bonus of learning about the area’s background or culture.
  • Try a different lodging – Sites like VRBO and Airbnb are loaded with housing options that aren’t hotels. Since these are usually residences, they come with amenities like kitchens as well.
  • Wing it – If you have flexibility and don’t need the certainty of a planned spring break trip, you can wait and get rock bottom prices on last minute deals. Check in with a few of your top vacation spots and see what they have to offer day-of and you can save literally up to half price for your trip!

There’s always the staycation


The ever-popular staycation can be a whole lot of fun for frugal families. Just because you aren’t traveling to an exotic location doesn’t mean you can’t have an incredible week. These ideas from Living Well Spending Less are a great way to get started on planning your own fun-filled week at home.

And, are you a beach or ski person when it comes to spring break?

Have more tips for us on how to save on a spring break trip? Let us know, we’d love to share them!