Published on May 1st, 2017 | by Miriam Porter

Top 5 Ways to Save Money on Your Next Family Vacation.

Before you know it, another school year will have come and gone and you will be planning your next family vacation. Assuming you have already nabbed the best deals possible on your flights, rental car (if needed) and the accommodations that best suit the needs of your family, here are five additional ways to save money on food, attractions and more once you arrive at your destination.

1.Book attraction passes online or purchase coupon booklets.
Being prepared can stretch your dollar further and allow your family to visit more attractions while on vacation. Many places offer significant discounts when you book in advance or purchase coupons online.  With the Niagara Falls Adventure Pass, you can save up to 48% on top attractions. If you‘re taking the family to Florida, Canadian residents can save on some of the biggest theme park tickets. Or choose your destination for savings in North America using CityPASS. CAA offers Members amazing savings and discounts on attraction tickets, see for yourself.

Ferris wheel amusement park

2.Purchase food at the grocery store.
Eating every meal in restaurants costs a lot of money and you can save a fortune making your own simple meals in the hotel with food you purchased at a nearby grocery store. You don’t need a full kitchen for quick meals – just request a small fridge and kettle in your room if it’s not there already. Cold cereal or hot oatmeal with sliced bananas are great for breakfast. For lunch, sandwiches are easy to make with bread and your choice of topping and fruit and veggies can be eaten raw with or without a dip. Most hotels will let you use dishware and cutlery from their restaurant or room service. When you go out exploring for the day, bring snacks in your bag like granola bars and apples. If you want to save money when you do eat out, find a local grocery store with a buffet or try a chain like Souplantation/Sweet Tomatoes for fresh and healthy food with low prices if you’re in the U.S.

Fresh market produce

3. Find attractions with free admission.
Every day of your trip doesn’t need to include visiting expensive amusement parks and paid attractions, especially when there are free adventures around every corner. This year in the Great White North you can take advantage of free admission to all national parks and historic sites courtesy of Parks Canada. If you are visiting a destination like Myrtle Beach, take a day off from sightseeing, pack a picnic lunch and head to the beach. Plenty of cities have free parks, forests and natural wonders to explore. There are also many North American sightseeing destinations that offer free tours, such as the Canadian Parliament buildings in Ottawa. If you want to find free activities at your next destination, check out the website of the local Tourism Board.

National park

4. Travel like a local.
If you are visiting a city like Montreal or Atlanta with excellent public subway systems, travel like a local and your only expense will be the transit fare. Not only will you save money, but don’t forget that kids love trains! City buses are also an ideal way to explore places like Ottawa or Miami. Many cities like London, Toronto and New York allow you to access the city from the airport via public transportation and light rail systems. If buses and subways are not an option, one way to save money on car rentals and taxi fares is to get an app like Uber or Lyft and pay a fraction of the price getting to your destination.

Public transport train platform.

5. Take photos and skip the souvenirs.
You won’t need to declutter your home from unwanted souvenirs if you don’t purchase them in the first place. These days most people travelling on vacation have a cell phone with a camera, so snap away and make a photo book of your trip once you return home. That’s right, skip the overpriced hotel lobby stuffed animals and t-shirts. If you simply must have something in your bag to accompany you out of the city, take home a map that was given to you for free by the hotel concierge. It will fit perfectly in your homemade photo album.

Young boy taking picture of wall art

With CAA, you can save on flights, hotels, car rental, cruises and more, take a look.

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