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It’s some people’s favourite time of year – the return of warm weather, the melting of snow, and a generous allotment of free time due to statutory and institutional holidays in March and April. Spring Break! You may commence shouting “wooooo!” or “yeahhhhhhh!” at a volume appropriate for your current surroundings!

Spring break holidays have long been associated with travel, which, unfortunately, is not the most budget-friendly thing out there regardless of your choice of plane, train or automobile. Popular destinations tend to recognize their appeal, and as such the rates for accommodations, travel and amenities near those hot locales tend to spike. If you’re looking to take a relaxing – or hedonistic – getaway without crushing the budget plans you may have made for the year, fear not – don your swim trunks and read on!

Roll the Dice on a Last-Minute Deal… Or Don’t.

This is one of the few times that you will ever hear the writers of this blog condone taking a financial risk, but here you go. If you are dead set on getting away for the break for the least money possible, you may be able to score a better rate on your travel and/or accommodations if you wait right up until the very last moment to commit to a purchase, when packages and flights are often deeply discounted. There are huge potential drawbacks to this strategy – you have to be of a very spontaneous mindset to make it work, and there’s no guarantee that you will end up where you thought. Things might go awry quickly, bookings may change, your flight might get bumped, and you might be in for a world of financial trouble if you lose out at any point in this risky proposition – or at the very least, you’ll end up stuck at home instead of going off to your desired destination. But, with all those caveats in mind, it’s still one of the best ways to keep your travel bills as light as possible.

The alternative, of course, is to plan in as much the opposite way as you can! Planning far, far in advance can give you more freedom of choice in terms of destinations and options, and you will avoid the rush-period spikes in pricing that many travel outlets experience during peak times such as March and April. Check out our blog on ‘Three Healthy Money Habits to Add to Your Life‘, to help you save!

Band Together

The cost of travelling can be significantly reduced if you are the kind of person who likes to roam about in a group. Splitting the expenses associated with your spring break plans among a larger cadre of friends or co-travellers will make the whole thing more cost-effective. Plus, you’re equipped with a squad of fellow “breakers” to share your enjoyment of the time off with!

Look Off the Beaten Path

The stereotypical spring break destination is vibrantly tropical, warm, and well built up with the infrastructure to cater to the demands of tourists passing through. However, this often comes with the caveat that it’s hard to book travel to such places – and when you can, it’s quite expensive. More and more springtime travellers are looking to unconventional locales that are a bit further from the traditional tourist hot spots – or in some cases, much closer to home. There might be opportunities for rest and relaxation lurking right in your proverbial backyard! Simply expanding your horizons to the more esoteric locales out there might be a way to keep your plans on the budget-friendly path. And you’ll have a unique story to tell when you get back!

Tags : budgetingfinancial planningmoneymoney savingpersonal financeplanningsaving moneyspendingspringbreakstrategies