One of the best parts of traveling is enjoying different cuisines, whether you are traveling in the United States or visiting a foreign country. However, one of the most expensive parts of any vacation is the cost of eating three or more meals each day in restaurants. These tips can help you save money while traveling and still enjoy unique foods in the region where you are visiting.
Before you arrive at your destination, check different restaurant websites in the area to get an idea of prices and menu options. If you are searching for a particular food, such as lobster in Maine, check for restaurants in the area that have daily specials. Some even allow you to sign up for coupons or discounts delivered to your email, so be sure to check long before your planned trip.
Many hotels, even affordable hotels in Los Angeles and other cities, offer free breakfast for guests. Some of the breakfasts are continental style, offering fruit, cereal and muffins. Others offer a full breakfast with pancakes, sausage and bacon. You may even find a hotel that offers cooked-to-order breakfast. Select healthier options like fruit, granola and yogurt that will keep you full longer. Ask at the front desk whether the hotel has coupons to local restaurants as well for meals other than breakfast. There are some hotels who offer an evening cocktail hour that includes food. Some of them offer a full dinner while others simply offer appetizers. If they offer such options, take advantage in order to reduce your meal costs.
Choose to Stay Near a College
If possible, choose a hotel near a college as restaurants near schools often have excellent meal discounts in order to draw in students who are often broke. Many times, you can find a slice of pizza for a dollar, two tacos for a few dollars and half-priced cocktails at certain times of the day. Restaurants near casinos also offer lower priced foods, especially during the week.
Carry Healthy Snacks
Whenever possible, carry healthy snacks with you in a backpack, your purse or pocket. Nuts, granola bars and dried fruit are easily portable and will help you avoid purchasing expensive, unhealthy snacks while you are sightseeing. A reusable water bottle is also an excellent investment as you can often fill it at water fountains or even in a bathroom sink to keep from buying expensive bottled water or soft drinks.
These small tips can help you avoid spending a significant amount of your grocery budget on food. Whenever possible, choose a hotel room with a refrigerator and microwave as you can also save money by making some meals in your room.