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A Few Ways to Vacation on a Budget

Sometimes we need a break or a change of scenery, but the family budget doesn’t seem to be accommodating our needs. Sure, it would be awesome to take off for a week and shuttle the fam around France for a bit or perhaps hop on over to New Zealand for some surf ‘n’ sheep–but those kinds of trips require not only a large flexible budget, but also a lot of extra energy and perseverance (loooong flights can take a lot out of any human, big or small).

So what are some things to keep in mind when you want to travel, but wish to conserve some funds and fresh spirits? Let’s take a look at 5 budget vacation mainstays:

  1. Stay Local: This idea is pretty clear, but otherwise unappetizing to most. Staying local means staying within reach of those social tendrils of the known entities of the world. Staying local means seeing some of the same places and same weather you’ve been wanting to escape! Well, if you’re living in the Pacific Northwest that’s where the beauty of Orcas Island comes to the rescue. Get off the mainland, take that brief ferry ride and discover a destination vacation without all the long travel and extra expenditures.
  2. Camping: This is the ol’ classic budget vacation approach. What could be cheaper than pitching a tent right in the middle of the great outdoors? Camping is fun for the whole family with lots of unforgettable experiences built-in. However, if your back is a bit stiff and you don’t relish the idea of sleeping on the ground, air mattress or no air mattress, then perhaps a vacation rental like ours is more your style. Sure, you won’t be as in-touch with nature if you stay in a house, but at least you get that huge master bedroom! And yes, the vacation home is a biiiiit more expensive than the tent….but maybe it’s worth it :) .
  3. Take a Volunteer Vacation: Some places might accommodate you, or at least give out a bargain, if you’re willing to volunteer some of your time and energy to their cause. If you’re interested in volunteering out on the Northwest Islands, check out this page here with a list of fields and projects that are looking for some help.
  4. Hop on a Last-Minute Tour or Cruise: Lots of these companies have extra spaces to fill before they embark and so they dish out some special deals just before they go. Try to keep abreast of the latest news on your desired destination/activity and be ready to jump in when the 15-30% discounts start popping up. For example, here’s a 7-day Alaskan cruise leaving tomorrow Aug. 30 for only $500! It may be a spur of the moment kind of thing, but it’s still a wonderful vacation for a very cheap price!
  5. Off-season Vacation: Lots of vacation rentals and hotels are much cheaper during the off-season. The off-season usually starts in Sept and goes til May or even June for some places and you may save yourself hundreds of dollars by just waiting an extra month before going on that trip. For an easy example, here are Orcas Ohana’s Rates per season. You can see that the most budget-friendly time to stay with us is in the Winter Season (Nov-Feb).