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Budget Travel

How to Travel Richly On A Budget

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richlyWe all want to save money when we travel, but sometimes we also like to enjoy a little luxury. Contributing writer Lea Donosky shares her tips for traveling like the wealthy without the cost. 

1. Dress well. When you are out sightseeing and need a restroom, you can walk into the finest of hotels and use their facilities, which are usually positioned off the lobby.

2. For the price of a spa treatment, make a day of it at some of the world’s best hotels and resorts. Book an early treatment and then you can work out in the gym, use the pool, take a sauna, and maybe even relax in a meditation room.  You’ll be able to do all this without having to pay for an upscale hotel room. Additionally, some hotels will comp your parking ticket.

3. Go to the finest department store in any city and get your makeup done. Most luxury department stores have makeup artists on hand who will be happy to doll you up for an evening on the town. While you aren’t required to make a purchase, it’s a nice thing to do. Besides, who doesn’t need a new lipstick, mascara, or skin care item?  It’s especially fun to see what look you receive in different locales.

4. You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars to enjoy some of the world’s best restaurants. Many cities have Restaurant Week, where restaurants offer a prix fixe menu. You can check out the prices beforehand so you know exactly how much you’ll be spending. Just allow for drinks and gratuity. Or, splurge on a glass of champagne or a cocktail at the bar of a great hotel or restaurant. Add an appetizer and you still can have a world-class experience for way less than $100. The people watching is free.

5. You may be a flying tourist, but if stuck with a long airport stay, buy a day pass to an airline club. For around $50, you can lounge in comfy chairs, enjoy free Wi-Fi, TV, magazines, and sometimes even free snacks and drinks along with all those business and first-class travelers.

6.  Check out the arts gallery district when visiting a city for show openings. While some may be invitation only, many are happy to have visitors. Enjoy the art, a drink, perhaps a canapé, and always savor the people watching. It’s easy to fit in…..just wear black.

7.  One should choose friends for their fine qualities and personalities. But it doesn’t hurt if you select some who also have first or second homes in geographically desirable locales so you can travel without paying for hotels. Just be sure to be a thoughtful, entertaining houseguest.

For more budget travel tips, check out:

By Lea Donosky for