Discounts For Travel Helps Stretch Your Budget

By: Jody Smith

Traveling on a budget isn't as tricky as you might think. A little research and some flexibility can make your travel dollars stretch further. Browse the net for discounts from travel organizations who have a presence online. Some of these organizations offer discounts of 5 to 10 percent when seniors book their travel needs on their websites. Some sites also offer travel alerts and notifications about prices that are reduced.

Don't be shy. Step up and ask what senior discounts are available. Some discount rates start at age 50, some at 60 or older, many are not advertised. It's possible to save 10 to 30 percent on your hotel rooms just by asking, and being the right age. Many tourist attractions offer discounts for seniors, or special days where seniors will pay less. Some hotels, restaurants and car rental places can offer 10 to 15 percent discounts. Don't forget to ask about group discounts if you are traveling in a group.

Look for the resorts and hotels that offer discounts on their per-day rates for longer stays. If you're willing to take your trip in the off-season, it can be more affordable. If you're willing to take a last-minute jaunt, it can pay off in a reduced price. Simplyseniors.com said that you could save up to 75 percent this way. At the other end of the spectrum, if you book far in advance, by say six months, you can get promotional flights at a reduced price.

It's a good idea to join groups like the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the Alliance for Retired Americans (ARA), or the automobile club AAA. The yearly fee is far less than the savings you could amass by using their discounts. You can be eligible for 5 to 10 percent discounts for many services like renting a car or going out for dinner, booking a room or a flight. Look into local travel groups for seniors for more of the same.

Another way to pamper your budget is to swap houses. You stay in their house, they stay in yours. To keep things safe, you can turn to organizations that orchestrate this exchange. Generally you will apply through a website. You'll fill out a listing for your house, and see other people's houses from all over the globe. Just pick your destination and see what kind of houses are available there. The house swap organization will act as a go-between for you and your homeowner of choice. Depending on what you are comfortable with, you might prefer to be at home when the other homeowner comes to stay at your place. Or you may prefer to make yourself scarce and never make personal contact. The home swapping organization can make these things happen as you prefer.

Jody Smith is a freelance writer for EmpowHER.com.

Sources:

Budget Travel for Seniors

http://simplyseniors.com/travel_and_lifestyle/trip_planning/budget_travel_for_seniors

How to Travel on a Senior's Budget

http://www.ehow.com/how_2079600_travel-seniors-budget.html

Budget travel ideas: House swap!

http://www.seniorconnectionfl.com/news/2011/oct/11/budget-travel-ideas-house-swap

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