Spring break is always a mix of emotions for college students: joy at not having to go to classes for a week; concern over how much money they’re spending; exhaustion when they realize they may have had just a little too much fun with their friends.
It’s tempting to book a hotel on the beach or plan a trip to Disney, but there are many inexpensive options that can be just as enjoyable.
Airbnb: This site has thousands of apartments and houses that owners rent out to travelers for days and weeks at a time. Some are lavish apartments in L.A., others are remote ski lodges in northern New Hampshire. Wherever you’re looking to travel, Airbnb most likely has a house or room nearby. If you’re looking to save some money this trip, many owners rent out suites or single rooms in their home (rather than the whole house), which can cost as little as $20 per night. There’s a vast amount of options, so start exploring at https://www.airbnb.com/.
KAYAK searches hundreds of sites for the cheapest flights, and it lets you input a range of dates and airport locations. It’s easy to understand and navigate and is a great resource if you’re looking to travel abroad this spring break. To explore your travel options, visit https://www.kayak.com/flights.
Hostels: Although not as luxurious as a Hilton or Marriott, hostels are a great way to save money and meet fellow travelers. Depending on the location, you can book a night in a hostel for as little as $6. If you’re traveling to a new area, the owners and other travelers can help you find the best restaurants and local attractions. Check out http://www.hostels.com/ for thousands of hostels, worldwide.
Couchsurfing: This is a free app that lets users stay the night with hosts all around the world, who open up their homes to travelers looking for a free place to stay. It’s perfect for people who want to immerse themselves in the area’s culture and meet locals who can show them the best sights and attractions. Visit https://www.couchsurfing.com/ for more info on how the app works.
National and state parks: Once you’re in your spring break destination, it’s easy to get carried away by theme parks and excursions. However, museums and state parks are a great way to save money on your trip because they are usually inexpensive and offer hours of entertainment. Parks maintained by the government are almost always clean and have ample signage and parking, and most offer activities like kayaking, snorkeling, biking, and grilling. Many museums offer student discounts, and with enough internet research prior to your trip, you can sometimes snag a free pass online or through your local library.
No matter where your spring break destination is, it’s not difficult to save some extra dough by planning ahead and exploring what the locals have to offer.