Written and Contributed by Jesse Clark
Europe is practically designed for weekend getaways. With so many fantastic cities and towns just hours apart from one another, it’s easy to find a change of scenery on short notice. However, even traveling for a weekend can get expensive if you’re not mindful. If you’re a busy entrepreneur, here are 10 ways you can enjoy a weekend getaway while sticking to a budget.
1. Do your research
Know that while it’s possible to snag great travel deals, if something sounds too good to be true, it could be a scam. Seniors are especially prone to being taken advantage of in travel-related fraudulent schemes, but no matter your age, do your homework. Before booking any accommodations, do some research: look for online reviews, verify vendors’ contact information, and be wary of sending money to anyone who can’t give you full and complete information (including photos) about what to expect regarding their product or service.
2. Travel in the shoulder season
Summer is peak tourism season for most of Europe and the United Kingdom, which means prices for lodging and travel are at their highest. You’ll also deal with the largest crowds, which limits how much you can see on a short weekend trip. Traveling in the shoulder season gives you lower prices and smaller crowds without the short days and cold temperatures of winter. Learn more about timing your trip at The Savvy Backpacker.
3. Leave your pet behind
Traveling out of the country with a pet is not only a hassle, but it also adds to the expense of your trip. Some buses, trains and airlines don’t allow pets on board, and when they do, owners must pay a fee to bring them along. You’re also likely to encounter additional fees for pet-friendly lodging. Odds are, you’ll save money leaving your dog with a sitter or boarder, especially when booking through a pet services website or app rather than a kennel facility.
4. Choose budget travel
Budget travel doesn’t have a reputation for luxury, but it’s the best way to travel far without spending a lot. Between bus lines, budget airlines and trains, you can access cities across Europe and the UK. Nomadic Matt names the most popular options, and explains how to combine them for maximum convenience and minimum price.
5. Skip the rental car
When you rent a car, you not only pay the rental fee, but you also have to pay for fuel and parking. Ultimately, driving a car around a major city isn’t usually convenient. Skip the stress of driving yourself and rely on public transit to get around. Many bus and train systems sell unlimited multi-day passes so you can explore the city for one low price.
6. Walk everywhere
Public transit rarely drops you at the doorstep of your destination, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Walking a few blocks to your destination is a wonderful opportunity to soak up the charm of lively city streets.
7. Stay at a vacation rental
Travelers can find great prices at budget hotels, but hotel rooms lack one important amenity: a kitchen. For competitive prices and the ability to cook your own meals — a major cost-saver — opt for a vacation rental through a service such as HomeAway, Airbnb, or VRBO.
8. Splurge on lunch, not dinner
Sampling the local cuisine is one of the best parts of traveling, but dinners out quickly eat up a small travel budget. Instead of dining out for dinner, treat yourself to lunch instead. You’ll see many of the same menu options at significantly lower prices.
Just because you’re not eating out for breakfast and dinner doesn’t mean your meals need to be boring. Shop for groceries at a local market to cook meals in your room or enjoy a picnic on the go.
9. Enjoy free entertainment
You don’t have to spend a lot for a great day (or night!) out. Check local newspapers or ask your hotel concierge or vacation rental host about free events happening around the city.
10. Ensure smooth sailing
The last thing you want to do is come home to things falling apart at the office. Long before you book those airline tickets, find services like ZenBusiness Inc that help you set up your affairs in a way that allows you to leave the states with peace of mind. With accurate and timely paperwork handling left to expert hands, you’ll come back to your business running like a top.
There’s nothing better than a weekend getaway for busy entrepreneurs. After a weekend of traveling, you’ll head to work on Monday feeling rejuvenated and inspired — all without spending any holiday time. When you follow these 10 tips, you won’t spend a lot of money, either.
Visit Travelwise for help researching, planning, and booking your next trip at the best prices!
Image via Unsplash
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Gary de Sesa & Kita de Sesa are travel agents and owners of Gary D Travel. Contact us at 516-300-9924 or
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