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The #1 Way to Save on Travel

This is the secret.  How can we afford to travel so much?  I’m going to give it to you.  Ready?

Be infinitely flexible.

That’s it.  That’s how you do it.

Infinite flexibility means absolutely never saying “we need to go from xxx to yyy and we can only travel on these two days.”

Infinite flexibility means traveling in the off season.  It means Norway in April, the Swiss Alps in January, and Southeast Asia during the monsoon.

Infinite flexibility means going where the deals are, even if it means going to Madrid twice in one year because it’s cheaper than a domestic transcon.  Or planning your stop in Andorra the weekend before the ski slopes open so that all hotels are 80% off.

Most of the time, infinite flexibility means taking the extremely expensive summers off.  It means that the guidebooks don’t give you accurate information on opening hours or closure days because they assume you are going during the popular summer months.

A corollary to this is that you might miss out on a few seasonal attractions or events by coming in the off season.  And you will have people ask you, “Why bother visiting if things are just going to be closed?”  And my answer to this is because the alternative to going in the off season might be not going at all.  The alternative might be believing that a single trip abroad needs to cost 20% or more of your annual take home pay.  Or it might be that the alternative to taking multiple off-season trips per year is to take one prime-season trip every 5 years.  And none of these scenarios seem like the ticket to me.

When it comes to travel, I think there’s a significant argument to be made for quantity over quality, and that’s how we choose to operate as a family.

Admittedly, there is a certain learning curve for how to follow the off-season deals and get notified about mistake fares, fare sales, and hotel points breaks.  But those things can be learned or followed on blogs and forums.

An attitude of constant flexibility, of seriously not caring where you go or when must come from within you.

 

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