Lessons on Travel Budgeting

When planning a travel budget, it’s easy to overlook “minor” expenses that turn out to be not so minor. Most of us expect flights, tickets, transportation, hotels and meals to be our major expenses and assume everything else will fit within a small additional “miscellaneous” allowance.  We tend to search out the best values for those costs we think will add up to the bulk of our overall travel expenses.

Overlooking “minor” expenses can have a high price tag. For example, I once took an extended 2-week trip across the country, and found a great deal on my flight, paying only $250 round-trip. But the charge for parking my vehicle at the airport’s cheapest “economy” lot added up to over $300 – more than the cost of my flight!

The lesson here is to do your research in advance, including additional expenses. I visited the official site for Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport and found the “economy” parking listed at $7.50 per day. Part of the “economy” is a lack of daytime security and a distance of almost 4 miles to the airport.

A quick search for Ft. Lauderdale airport parking turns up a host of better options, including one for only $4.99 per day, located within a mile of the airport and attended continuously by security in a gated lot. As an added advantage, there is no need to wait for scheduled shuttle service from this independent lot because they run continuously, even upon request. All of this information was easily available with a few simple clicks.

The next time you’re making travel plans, be sure to consider all of your expenses. Make use of online tools that help you search multiple options and compare features and price in order to keep your trip within budget and assure that you will receive the level of service you desire.

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