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January 12, 2020

Traveling During Retirement

Tips to make the most of retirement and stay on budget.

Now that you’ve made it to retirement, you’ve got the time to visit your dream destinations, but traveling on a tighter budget can be a challenge. Here are some tips to make the most of your retirement, avoid overspending, and cross those destinations off your list.

Budget for travel.

If travel is an important part of your retirement plans, include it in your budget. Total all related expenses like airfare, lodging, car rentals, food, and attractions and figure how much you can realistically set aside each month in a separate travel savings account.

Make plans early.

If you have a specific place, dates and itinerary in mind, book as early as possible to take advantage of the best rates. Keep an eye out for price drops—you might be able to get a refund for the difference.

Be flexible.

If your dates and/or destinations are flexible, it’s easy to save money. If you’re wanting a beach resort vacation, the Dominican Republic might be cheaper than Hawaii. Also, retirement affords the ability to travel at any time allowing you to travel to popular destinations in the off season. Traveling outside the normal tourist season will help get you the best deals and avoid overcrowded attractions.

Research, research, research.

Check discount sites like Kayak, Hotwire and Google Flights for deals on flights, cruises, hotels, and rental cars. Also, a rental like AirBnB or VRBO instead of a hotel can be cheaper, especially if you’re traveling with a group.

Save on food.

Booking a hotel that provides breakfast or preparing meals in a rental home can help you avoid spending money on every meal.

Claim your discounts.

Take advantage of senior discounts as well as any memberships like AAA, AARP, or warehouse clubs. Ask about discounts at lodging, local events, and attractions. Retired service members are also eligible for military discounts.

Leverage travel rewards.

If you have a credit card or other rewards program account, consider redeeming points from loyalty programs for airline miles, hotel discounts, or other travel-related benefits.

Retirement is the time to enjoy yourself and reap the benefits of your hard work. By planning and budgeting, visiting your favorite destinations without breaking the bank can be a realit