A vacation is an opportunity to escape reality and enjoy some downtime, but it isn’t without costs. Already booked an upcoming vacation? Here are five ways you can still save money on your next big family trip:

Skip meals at the airport

Airports offer a wide variety of food options, from restaurants to food kiosks, and sometimes there’s the option of purchasing a meal on a flight. Unfortunately, airlines and airport vendors often charge more for food because passengers don’t have any other choice. If you want to save on your trip, bring your own food.


Don’t eat out every day

If your hotel room has a small kitchenette, prepare some of your meals in the room to save money and avoid a common travel expense. When you do eat out, eat out for lunch or breakfast. They tend to be cheaper than dinners.

Avoid a foreign transaction fee

Traveling abroad with a credit card can be safer and more convenient. But make sure to sign up for or bring a credit card with no foreign transaction fees. Between hotel stays, entertainment, dining, traveling and buying mementos, fees of a couple of dollars here and there can add up.

Search for local discounts

Before paying full price for restaurants, entertainment and other activities, check local deal sites such as Groupon or LivingSocial in search of discounts. You might find a multiday tour pass for discounts on admission to museums and other attractions. Additionally, some attractions might offer a discount if you’re an auto club or credit card rewards member.



Purchase a hop-on hop-off tour

If you plan on hitting several tourist spots in a single day, taking a taxi from location to location can get expensive. To explore your destination on the cheap, purchase a hop-on-hop-off tour, if available. These tours give you a view of the whole city, and you can get off at each site and catch a later tour bus to go to the next site, saving on travel costs between destinations.