If you’re like me, you’ll occasionally stay for extended period of time in a foreign place. (I define foreign as a place other than home). If you’re going to be away from home, it doesn’t mean you have to be cooped up in a hotel room! There are a few alternatives to staying in a place that is / can be more comfortable.
1. You can get more space for the same or less money than your traditional hotel by renting a vacation home / apartment. These are great hotel alternatives with more room(s) and full kitchens! If you’re really lucky, you can end up with a house that has a pool! On a stay (a few years ago), I ended up renting a house in Hawaii that had 9 Bedrooms, a pool, a 3 car garage and a view overlooking the sea. My cost for the month? $8000.00. While it may seem high for the month, consider the 13,000.00 it would have cost me to stay in a hotel not including the price of food in the middle of tourist central.
2. Pack for a week and stay for a month! (If you’re going away for a month, you don’t need to pack for that period! It’s a mistake if you do!) A good rule of thumb is to pack for 1/3 of the time you’re going to be at a location. There are things called laundry machines that are available in many hotels, houses, apartments, and of course (laundromats). Why carry all the extra stuff when you don’t need to? I can get by quite comfortably on 1 week’s worth of clothing. If I feel a need for more “stuff”, a visit to the local mall yields an extra outfit or two or three.
3. When you stay in a location for an extended period of time, it never fails. You’re going to acquire stuff. The packing thing may be an issue when leaving for home. How to fit it all on the plane? There’s a simple solution to this problem most people don’t think about. The post office! Here’s an interesting thought. Your extra socks, books, pillows, etc.. Whatever it is you acquired for your stay are bulky and don’t need to beat you home! In fact, they can arrive when they arrive! Why not go to the Post Office and ship it to yourself Parcel Post? (It costs me about $20.00 to send a relatively large box home to myself). If you’re lucky, you can get the stuff to fit in one or more Priority Mail Flat Rate boxes. (1-2 days delivery time).
4. Car Rentals: If you’re going to be traveling for a bit of time and are going to have a rental car, inquire about extended rental pricing! It exists. Just don’t rent from the airport. The airport rental agencies all have an extra “Airport or Tourism” service fee attached to their rentals. This fee can amount to an extra 15-20% of the rental if you didn’t realize. The simple act of hopping a bus, cab, train to an off airport location will save you a serious amount of money in many with cases.
5. Eat Healthy! When you’re away and have a car, consider eating in more “local” establishments. Do a bit of research ahead of time and you’ll find some really great places to eat for less money than you would be paying at the hotel restaurant! Another option? If you got yourself a place with a kitchen, how about a visit to the grocery store? Why not cook! (I prefer this much of the time).
Well.. I hope this article opens up your options when it comes to extended stays. It’s made a huge difference in my life!