What’s traveling if you don’t do anything while you’re at your destination? Not much. The costs for all those activities can certainly add up and, depending on where you are, can leave your bank account and pockets empty. Why not keep a little more cash on you by using some simple tricks to get discounts on tourist attractions? It will allow you to do more and still spend less on your trip.
Purchase a city pass for your destination city. If you want to do a lot of popular touristy things when you go on vacation, search for a city pass. Most large cities have them and can save you up to half off on a long list of sites you probably already have on your itinerary. Search CityPASS.com, SmartDestinations.com and Visiticket.com for cards in the U.S.
Plan some museum visits on your trip. There are a lot of museums that are free to the public or offer free or discounted admission on certain days of the week or month. In Europe, you can gain free entry to a huge list of museums, like the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and the Musée Bourdelle in Paris.
Look for discount coupons on the attraction’s website. Sometimes the only discounts available for places are on their website. This is true for Universal Studios, where you can get a better deal on admission if you buy ahead of your trip than you can at the gate. It also lets you print out your ticket before you leave and not have to wait in line at the ticket booth
Use your AAA or credit union account. Often, you can save a percentage on attractions if you flash your AAA card or you can purchase tickets in advance through their travel stores. The same goes for your credit union. Both offer discounted Disney park-hopper tickets that can save you big time if you are planning on visiting for three or more days.
Go to the nearest hotel lobby. Many hotels have a brochure rack that also has flyers for nearby attractions. More often than not, there is also a discount coupon on these that can be anything from a buy one, get one free admission to 10% off admission for your whole group. You don’t have to stay at the hotel to use these either. If you’re staying at a timeshare or similar lodging, they may have exclusive discounts better than what you can find on these brochures. You just need to ask at the front desk.
There are hundreds of dollars in discounts to be found for attractions on every trip you take. You just need to know where to look. Making a plan before you leave home can be the difference between saving big and spending much more than you anticipated. If you also find some free activities to mix with paid ones, your dollar will go a lot further as well.