Traveling is a lot of fun. It can also be super expensive, especially if you don’t know how to save or take advantage of travel perks while you’re on the road. As someone who’s does a lot of traveling a lot for work these days, today I’m partnering with American Express and Lyft to share the 5 things I do while booking and traveling to make sure I’m saving my money and maximizing travel benefits for future benefit!
- Find flight, hotel and restaurant deals on Google Flights or budget booking websites. It’s very rare that I ever go straight to an airline’s website to book my flight. I’m always on Google Flights, because I love that they give you a range of travel options sorted by travel time, price and predicted rises and falls in pricing. So convenient! Another website that I love to check out trip options is Expedia, where I can bundle my flight and hotel into one low payment and take advantage of other on-site opportunities to save money.
- Use a travel rewards card that gets you some serious perks. I’ve been using my American Express Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card for seven years now, and I have to say… I’m a huge fan. I rack up miles that I can eventually use for free flights, and can earn miles through dining at some of my favorite restaurants or using car-sharing services like Lyft. Most airline-affiliated credit cards come with a lot of perks like cash-back, travel insurance, free checked bags, concierge service and so much more… so definitely find a card that works for your needs! I love the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card because it has no annual fee.. so that’s a great travel card to start with, if you’re looking for a suggestion!
- Convert your currency at your bank before you go. Using foreign ATMs, or your domestic debit/credit card overseas can add up to lots of unpleasant foreign transaction fees by the time you get home! My primary bank lets me convert my U.S. dollar to a foreign currency at a much lower flat rate fee, and sometimes the conversion is 100% free if I’m converting enough money. This is a great way to make sure I stay within budget if I convert the exact amount of money I plan to spend on my trip — it helps me make sure I’m not swiping my credit card more than I need to.
- Book your flights in the middle of the week. If I’m leaving for a weekend trip, I usually book my outbound flight for Thursday night, and my return flight for Monday or Tuesday morning. It’s no secret that Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays are some of the most expensive days of the week to fly… so whenever I have the availability to be flexible, I book a mid-week trip to save money on my flight and avoid the huge airport traffic, lines and crowds! This works for holidays as well — I always try to book far enough in advance, and avoid flights the day right before or after a holiday.
- Pack a pair of comfy shoes, and explore your surroundings on foot! If you’re traveling somewhere unfamiliar, it can tempting to follow your itinerary to a T, meaning that you’ll probably end up spending on a taxi or public transportation to get from your hotel to your destination and back. But not only does that mean spending money — you’re probably also missing out on the many things to see in between your destinations! As long as the area I’m traveling in is safe, I always pack a pair of comfortable sneakers to explore my neighborhood in. It’s the only way to stumble across unique food, places and things that no one else has, and it’s also such a great way to familiarize myself with the local culture instead of staying in my taxi-induced tourist bubble. Travel is all about exploration, so don’t be afraid to get out there!
shot by Denisse Benitez
created in partnership with American Express