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One of the highlights of summer for many of us is the thought of getting away from it all for a while – by taking our annual summer vacation.

Whether you choose to spend it with friends, family or loved ones, a well-earned break could be just the thing you need to recharge your batteries, escape the daily grind for a while and experience new people and places.

However, in the current climate, you may be wondering just how you’re going to get away for a while without breaking the bank.

Let’s take a look at how you could have a fun vacation on a shoestring.

Accommodation

Along with the cost of getting to your holiday destination, accommodation can often be the most expensive part of going on vacation. Although five-star hotels with round-the-clock room service and Egyptian cotton sheets might be many people’s idea of a ‘dream’ getaway, the price tag is likely to be a harsh wake-up call.

So where could you stay without leaving you broke?

  • Rather than choose a holiday resort or expensive hotel, why not pool your money with your friends/family, and rent a holiday home or apartment for a few nights? Spreading the cost could be a lot cheaper, and you could even get a bit more space and freedom.
  • Consider a youth hostel if you’re really looking to be economical. It could be a great way to meet new people, as long as you don’t mind sharing a bathroom!
  • Do any of your friends or relatives have a place by the beach that they’d let you stay at? It could be worth finding out.
  • Why not go camping? It’s an adventure in itself, and as long as you have the right supplies, you could spend a week or so in the great outdoors without going over-budget.

Food

Rather than eating out at expensive restaurants, why not take food with you? A good freezer box can help you store a few treats, and as long as you properly store certain foods in airtight containers, they should last.

Alternatively, if you do go to cafes, bars and restaurants, try to avoid the ‘tourist trap’-type places that tend to charge a fortune. You never know what hidden gems you might find off the beaten path – and you could get to sample some authentic local cuisine.

Whatever approach you take, rest assured there are ways you could have a vacation to remember – without paying for it well into the future.

For more money savings tips, tools and guides visit www.ThinkMoney.com.