One of the most common questions I’m asked about travel is “How can I afford it?”
You can certainly look for the cheapest plane or cruise tix and the best values in tours, hotels or restaurants. But you can also try setting up a budget geared toward your finances so that your overall expenses don’t swamp your ability to experience those trips you’ve always wanted to take.
Financial blogger Eric Rosenberg, who writes for the website Earnin, where a modified version of this article originally appeared, takes you through the steps you’ll need to set up the kind of budget that’s right for you.
Yes, it can sound like a bit of a drag, but today’s software makes budgeting easier — and you may find yourself in some exotic land (or wherever your desires take you) sooner… Continue reading
I first wrote about medical tourism back in 2013, when it was starting to flourish as a means of saving money on medical care. The premise was that by traveling to other countries — such as India, Mexico, Thailand and others — Americans could receive hip replacements, cardiac surgeries, dental work and other procedures at considerably lower costs than in the U.S.
Then along came COVID-19, with travel to many countries banned or severely restricted. Medical tourism has been one more viral victim.
Today’s guest post, by writer Charlie Fletcher, offers a rundown on the current state of medical tourism — as well as some shoots of hope for the future as the world’s health care and tourism fields struggle to adapt.
By Charlie Fletcher
Medical tourism — the practice of traveling to other countries for affordable medical treatments — had grown increasingly popular among Americans in recent years. Until,… Continue reading
Today’s timely guest post is from Medicare expert Christian Worstell, who gives an update on how Medicare changes in 2021 can benefit American travelers — assuming we get the opportunity.
It all starts with the distribution of safe, effective vaccines, which could be available soon. And for Medicare recipients, as Christian points out, they’ll be free — just one of several upcoming perks. Here’s the latest:
By Christian Worstell
After a year of isolating at home and waiting out the COVID-19 pandemic, surveys show that once it’s safe, American baby boomers are eager to hit the road and travel again in 2021.
And as they do every year at this time, Medicare-eligible boomers are looking ahead to any changes in their Medicare benefits for the upcoming year.
So, what does one… Continue reading
Keeping track of what’s going on with airline fares these days is almost a full-time job.
That’s why I’ve turned to Scott Keyes of Scott’s Cheap Flights — whose full-time job actually is keeping track of airline fares — to help navigate through the turbulence.
In this guest post, Scott tackles the real story behind the recent wave of U.S. airlines dropping change fees. As usual, it’s a mix of good and bad — or at least middling — news for the consumer. But for all the uncertainty, we’ll take what we can get.
By Scott Keyes
Last week, four airlines—United, Delta, American, and Alaska—announced they were permanently axing change fees, which for domestic flights had typically been $200 (plus any fare difference). Hooray!
On balance, this is a positive move for travelers, but it’s not nearly the panacea that airlines would have you believe. There are still… Continue reading
Are you getting the most mileage out of your travel credit cards?
And I don’t mean just airline miles, but other, lesser-known perks as well.
Today’s guest post from consumer writer Andrew Rombach should give you some ideas about how to leverage your travel credit cards to their maximum advantage — and make your travel experience just a bit easier and more economical as well.
By Andrew Rombach
These little-known travel benefits can save you plenty of money and make your travel a lot more convenient.
Today’s guest post, by writer Anna Kucirkova, lays out the basics of “travel hacking.” If you aren’t familiar with the concept, read on — it may help to inspire you to invest the effort it takes to start seeing the world for free, or at least less.
Baby boomers with the time to devote to forming a comprehensive strategy and with credit scores sufficiently high to become accomplished hackers may use these methods to land free flights, hotel rooms, and other travel perks.
Hacking is really no more than capitalizing on money you might spend anyway to take full advantage of all those enticing credit card offers you see on TV — and seeking out others as well.
But be sure to heed Anna’s warnings about common travel hacking mistakes. If… Continue reading
Did you know that Chicago, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh are the best places to celebrate Christmas in America?
And I’m sorry to have to tell you this, residents of Hialeah, Florida, but you finished dead last for Christmas cheer in a survey of the 100 biggest U.S. cities, conducted by the financial site Wallethub.
You Hialeahans might as well stoke up the coal furnace right now, because all you’ll get in your stockings are lumps of the sooty stuff.
But back to the merry cities of Chicago, San Francisco, and Pittsburgh, followed close behind by New York City and Seattle, all dubbed tops for Christmas joy — and affordability, although some might question the latter.
Orlando, Atlanta, Washington, DC, Las Vegas (NV), and Portland (OR) rounded out the top ten.
How These Results Were Determined
Wallethub surveyed “29 key… Continue reading
Today’s guest post, by Aussie-expat writer Brittnay, is about some ways to save money while traveling in Europe — which can be a very expensive destination these days. I’ve added my own comments after each tip, usually to expand on them a bit.
While these tips only scratch the surface of the topic, they’re all valuable ones to keep in mind while planning your next European vacation.
Although travelling through Europe can be expensive, it doesn’t have to be.
We’ve put together five tips that have allowed us to visit 21 European countries in the past two years! Using these tips enable you to experience the cities and towns you visit more like the locals do — and that’s usually a good way to save money.
- Get a City Welcome Card
City… Continue reading
For baby boomers, saving money on accommodations can be tougher than for young travelers.
Dormitory-style hostels and CouchSurfing may have much less appeal than for those in their 20s or 30s.
Camping — at least the type (unlike “glamping” or glamorous camping) that leaves you trying to get a decent night’s sleep in a bag on the ground — can be tough on the back (with legitimate concerns that you might not be able to straighten up at all in the morning).
But, as guest poster Jesse Miller contends, “It’s still possible to enjoy a five-star housing experience without paying a five-star price.” The key, Miller says, “is to live like the locals do. This means avoiding more traditional options (such as pricey hotels and resorts) and immersing yourself in opportunities to interact with the… Continue reading
While I don’t usually wade into the credit card wars — too much fine print and peeking behind the promotional curtains can quickly turn great-sounding offers into not-so-hot — the personal-finance website WalletHub has done its homework in determining what it calls Winter 2017’s Best Travel Credit Cards.
With holiday travel season approaching, this might be a good time to take a look at the offers on hand. Applying for certain cards now will give you enough time to earn up to $625 in “free” travel — at least if you’re willing to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars first.
Note that they all come with annual fees, so these cards are ones you’ll want to use if you successfully apply for them. (And they all require good-to-excellent credit.)
Be sure you have definite… Continue reading