First Person: 3 Ways I Save on Traveling Costs

Yahoo Contributor Network

When I travel I like to spend as little money as possible so that I can stay longer and possibly go on more trips. I also have a child, so I make sure to pack plenty of snacks, and bring an ice chest for milk to save on grocery costs. On top of that, I grab my handy smartphone to save me some money with apps. Here are my three must-have apps for traveling.

Beat the gas prices

Knowing where to buy gas on long trips saves me hundreds. Sometimes I use my GPS to give me the prices of the nearest gas stations, but there are also apps incase my GPS fails. GasBuddy is one of my favorites. It's very accurate and I save hundreds, if not thousands, per year with it. It's a free app, and there's a version for iPhones, Androids, and Blackberry's. Waze is a newer app that is great. It's more of a crowd sourced app for gas prices, travel updates, speed traps, accidents, and traffic jams. This is one app I will be trying next time to save me another speeding ticket! Waze even offers coupons for discounts on gas. It is free, and compatible with iPhones and Androids.

Discounted parking

Living in Chicago was taking a toll on my budget after numerous parking tickets and extreme prices for parking. I was fed up with throwing money away, so on my hunt for financial relief, I stumbled across some parking apps. Since I began using them, I have saved an average of 40 to 50 percent on parking. Some of these apps also service many of the cities I travel to, so instead of stressing out about a parking spot in an unknown city, I use the apps to easily find a cheap one. My two favorites are SpotHero and ParkWhiz . ParkWhiz is my favorite because it covers cities across the U.S. It's easy to use, and I always find a cheap spot near my event.

Sleeping for cheap

The dreaded long trips I make occasionally have me up at 4 a.m. in order to make the entire trip in one day. This way is exhausting, and luckily there is an app called Trivago that eases the pain of hotel costs so I don't have to drive long hours. It's great for last minute plans, and for finding the absolute lowest hotel room price. It scouts all the major deal finders to find what agent I should book my reservations with. This app also saves me around 50 percent on hotel rooms. The free app works with iPhone and Androids.

Using these apps has saved me a lot of money, so hopefully you can save some money with them, too.

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