Vacations can be expensive, but it is perfectly possible to save money while traveling. If you’re wondering how to travel cheap, follow these five tips.

Pick the Time Less Traveling

This tip applies on two levels. First, if you can travel during non-peak seasons, you can often enjoy non-peak pricing. Second, some days offer better travel prices than others. Midweek flights often offer better airfare than weekend travel. When booking tickets, choose flexible dates to find the best days to fly while saving money. Don’t forget to check out red-eye flights for additional savings.

Pack a Lunch

Eating out multiple times a day adds up pretty quickly, especially if you are traveling with a lot of people (or kids). On days when you’re not visiting places with a strict no-outside-food-or-drink rule, throw together a lunch and carry it around in a purse or small backpack. You can stop by a park or eat on the go. Even Disney parks allow snacks and small lunches if you carry them in a small bag.

Watch for Free Days

Local attractions like zoos, museums, etc. sometimes offer free days once a month or so. Do a little research beforehand to take advantage of these offerings. Search online for free things to do in the area and you might be surprised what deals you can find.

Use Coupons and Ask for Discounts

Coupon clipping isn’t just for thrifty homemakers. Coupons can make seemingly too expensive activities affordable options for your vacation. Check out travel booklets and brochures, local tourism websites, deals at your hotel, and more.

Don’t be afraid to ask about discounts. Many places will offer lower prices for senior citizens, children, military members, students, large groups, etc. It doesn’t hurt to ask!

Carry a Water Bottle

This sounds simple, and you might not think it makes a difference, but carrying around and refilling your own water bottle can save a lot of money on a trip. Depending on where you visit, a water bottle can cost you anywhere from 1-5 dollars each. Multiply that by a few times a day and the number of people in your party, and you can pay for a nice meal, souvenir, or activity pretty quickly.

Vacationing on a budget takes time and effort, but saving money while making memories is worth it.