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Great Ideas For Budget Travel

If you can't change the prices, change your destination! -- to less expensive locales in
South America and Eastern Europe where your travel budget stretches more easily.

cheap travel in South America and Eastern EuropePlanning trips to hot destinations in the UK and Europe is getting to be more expensive every year.

With the global economy bringing the US dollar to lower levels than the pound and the euro, the travel bargains you may be used to are getting much harder to find.

For those traveling west to the United States or Canada that's great news. For those going the other direction, it's big trouble.

Americans and Canadians visiting Europe or a country that ties its currency to the euro are going to experience even worse sticker shock than they have in the recent past.

According to Tim Leffel, the author of the book Make Your Travel Dollars Worth a Fortune, there are solutions that will minimize the pain for tourists. It's time for creative planning and switching to alternate destinations. By using the right strategies and making good decisions, travelers can avoid paying inflated prices caused by currency shifts.

Visit Latin America
For the most part, countries south of the border are a safe currency bet for U.S. and Canadian travelers. Most Latin American countries tie their currency to the dollar officially or in practice and three actually use the U.S. dollar as their own. There has been little to no loss of value in most areas of this vast region and many countries in Central America and South America offer an excellent value at all budget levels.

Pick European destinations carefully
Going to the most popular destinations in Europe can feel like a shopping trip to Tiffany's. It isn't uncommon to find $100 taxi rides, $500 hotels, and routine restaurant lunches that can top $150. Those bent on traveling to Europe may want to expand their horizons and visit areas where demand has not driven prices to such lofty levels.

Eastern Europe travel and Turkey are still far cheaper than Western Europe, especially outside the big cities.

Visit the home front
Few travelers talk for years about taking a vacation to Kansas City, Boise, or Austin, but with last-minute airfares so prevalent now, it makes sense to be flexible and look beyond the obvious.

There is a very long list of places worth visiting across the U.S. and in Canada. Most of these North American destinations are doing everything in their power to make your stay memorable, from new museums and performance halls to free seasonal outdoor concerts. Lodging prices can be half or less what they are in larger cities and most Americans and Canadians are within a few hours drive of a great destination they have never visited.

Be flexible on lodging
For last-minute plans where the area and star level matters more than specifics, these sites can save travelers some serious money. Plus options that are harder to find on the big hotel booking sites, such as bed-and-breakfasts and short-term rentals, have not seen as much of a price jump.

For international travel, look beyond the U.S.-based booking sites and use ones that do a better job of covering the region you're visiting. Try EuroCheapo for Europe, Agoda for Asia, or city-specific sites for other continents.

[ED NOTE: Since this article was written, the dollar has risen and fallen against the pound and the euro, making affordable travel choices even more important. Remember that when you save on transporation and hotels beforehand the more vacation dollars you'll have to splurge once you get there. Happy travels!...]

About The Author...
Tim Leffel is author of the book "Make Your Travel Dollars Worth a Fortune: The Contrarian Traveler's Guide to Getting More for Less." See details and access extensive travel resources at

also see in Travel -> Five Affordable World Destinations | New York on a Budget

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