Summer Travel Savings

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(Memphis)  Summer may officially be more than a week away, but the travel season has already kicked off.  In fact, you may be thinking it's too late to plan a vacation, and it would be too expensive anyway.

However, that's not necessarily the case. Travel experts say there's still plenty of time to get away and save on summer travel.

You know life is good when you roll like James and Mary Adkins.

"We're just not in any big rush, if we find a place we like, we just stop for a day or two or three," says James.

We caught up with the couple during a quick stop in Memphis. They're taking a two-month trip up the east coast in their RV. They bought it used, and, although still a big investment, James says it works well for their lifestyle.

Jams explains, "I'm a diabetic, so traveling in this is easier for me because I need to eat three square meals and I need to snack every two hours."

While such wheels may be out of your league, there's still plenty of time to hit the road this summer and save a little cash.

"You can get down to the beach from here in six or seven hours. You can, if you want, New Orleans is popular, Nashville is popular, Atlanta, Chicago, I mean there's places we can go within a days driving time," says AAA's Cheryl Keating.

Keating says if you're taking a road trip, be sure to factor in distance, gas and whether you're traveling with elderly, small children or pets.

The best bang for your buck this summer, though, is cruises.

Keating says, "There's been all kinds of stuff out about cruises, but in all honesty, it's still everyone's most popular destination because it's all inclusive."

In fact, after the Triumph disaster, Carnival slashed prices to as low as $39.99 a night for one cruise!

When it comes to flights and hotels, experts say consumers should
avoid the 4th of July. In fact, wait until after Labor Day to get a really good deal.

According to Keating, the absolute best money saver is flexibility. "If you're a little open, there's always stuff out there."

Other Tips

  • Set a budget.  Determine how much you can afford to spend, and plan from there.
  • Don't wait until the last minute to book flights.
  • Get alerts from sites like Airfare Watchdog and Smarter Travel