7 Travel Preparations To Save You Money

Travel Preparations To Save You Money

I booked a trip to a family reunion in Pennsylvania with just two-weeks notice. Definitely the most last minute trip I’ve planned that wasn’t for a funeral! Before I go out of town, whether across the country or just overnight, I have a few travel preparations I take care of to save money while I’m gone.

1. Set Your Thermostat

If you have a programmable thermostat you probably don’t need it to run its usual course while your house is empty. I set mine to hold at a temperature that is ok for my pets and won’t let my pipes freeze in the winter. No need to pay to heat or cool an empty house!

2. Close The Shades

This also helps with heating and cooling costs, as well as privacy while you are gone.

3. Security

Set your alarm, consider putting some lights on a timer, or even consider something like FakeTV to give outsiders the impression that someone is home. I purchased FakeTV awhile ago and am excited to try it out on this trip! You can read more about it here. Another security measure is to put your mail on hold or arrange for a friend to pick it up. When I travel in the winter I also like to make arrangements with friends or neighbors to drive up my driveway and lay down some tire tracks after a snow fall.

4. Unplug

Before you leave, unplug electronics. Electronics still draw power while plugged in even if they are shut off, creating “vampire charges” which unnecessarily increase your electric bill. It’s a good habit to get into even when you’re not traveling, but it’s especially important while you’re traveling because if there is a storm or power surge your electronics could be damaged.

5. Turn Down Your Water Heater

Your water heater is designed to have hot water ready for you 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, for when you get the urge to take a shower at 3am. There’s no need to hold hot water for days while you’re out of town. Turning down the water heater before you leave can save you some money. It’s not a lot, but it all adds up. Also, consider turning it down a notch even while you’re home. You likely won’t notice a difference.

6. Take Care of Bank, Phone, and Health Insurance

This one is really more for international travel. Notify your bank that you are traveling out of the country, or even if you’re staying in the U.S. but expect to be doing a lot of shopping. You’ll want to give them a heads up that it’s you so that they don’t freeze your card if charges suddenly show up in China and look like fraud. You’ll want to check your phone plans and possible fees for international travel and verify what your health insurance will cover while you’re out of the country.

7. Tidy Up

Maybe this is just me, but when I get home from a trip I know that I’ll be coming home with a load of dirty laundry, litter boxes waiting to be cleaned, pets to pick up from the sitter, and grass to mow or possibly a driveway to shovel. The last thing I want is to have a messy house and a bunch of other miscellaneous things to do right when I walk in the door. I try to take care of my to do list and tidy up before I leave.

Travel Preparations To Save You Money

Great Wall of China – April 2013

What did I miss? What other preparations do you take when traveling? Comment below with your favorite tips and/or travel stories!

*Part of Financially Savvy Saturdays on brokeGIRLrich, A Disease Called Debt and Shoeaholic No More*

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25 Comments

  1. If you are planning to pack in a number of visitor attractions, in the end , you save a lot of money when using these kind of passes. Walk as much as you can, but if you can’t then use public transport over taxis; buy 24-hour, 3-day or even weekly public transport passes, which work out cheaper than single tickets.

  2. I have never actually thought about the house I leave behind. I’m usually in an apartment so I just turn everything off and make sure everything is sealed. The building does the rest. So good to know more.

  3. Coming home to a messy house is the worst!! I definitely make sure everything is put away before I leave.

  4. These are awesome tips. Anytime I leave town for a few days I make sure that everything is unplugged (except the tv because I’m sure to be Dvring something lol) and make sure my a.c. is turned off because leaving it on is such a waste of money.
    I also like to take out all the trash and make sure all the dishes and laundry are done. Nothing is more frustrating than coming home after a long trip to a mess or worse bugs and nats.
    Also when I know it’s coming I try to avoid buying foods I might not finish or that won’t store very long so I don’t waste money or food.
    Great tips 
    Dia@ All The Things I Do recently posted…Influenster Spice VoxBox Product ReviewMy Profile

  5. You’ve got some great tips here. Like you, I really don’t like coming home to a messy house so I have to make sure everything is put away before we go. Adds to the to-do list but worth it when I walk back in the door and I’m not greeted by a mess!

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