5 Tips for Avoiding Unexpected Travel Costs


Are you getting ready for a summer road trip with the family? Travelling by car and staying at a cheap hotel can be a great way to get out and about without blowing all your cash on flights and a big fancy holiday. But if you’re not savvy, you could end up spending more than you bargained for on hidden travel expenses.

Here’s how to avoid hidden costs on your holiday.

Travel checklist

  1. Before you go, the number 1 thing you need to do is make sure your car is as ready for your vacation as you are. You don’t want to be on the highway and have your vehicle break down! Start by lifting up the hood and running through the basics (this could be a job for hubby!). Check all the fluids, make sure the lights are working and, if you need to, pump up the tires at the gas station.
  2. It’s also a good idea to pack a kit in case of emergency. Include a flashlight, first-aid essentials, water bottles, jumper cables and snacks that won’t perish. This will be a lifesaver if you get stranded and need to change a tyre.
  3. Before you leave, take out extra cash to avoid any nasty ATM fees – these can really add up over time.
  4. Pack a cooler with sandwiches, snacks and drinks. I’ve found that food from gas stations is usually not only unhealthy, but it’s charged at a higher price than food from a regular grocery store. While you’re at it, pack food to keep in the hotel too, like cereal, fruit and bread. This will save on eating out every morning for breakfast.
  5. Check the fine print for the hotel that you’re staying at. Often, hotels will charge extra for parking or Wi-Fi, which can really add up over time. Get the best bang for your buck and stay at a hotel that has “extras” included in the cost when booking.

Have you got any tips for staying frugal while on vacation? Let me know, I’d love to hear them!