Here's Why Shifting Your Weekend Getaway By One Day Could Unlock Unexpected Savings

With many of us stuck at work Monday to Friday and having only ten paid vacation days per year, time is extremely precious. With this in mind, weekend trips are great ways to travel somewhere new while using minimal vacation days. But, traveling on the weekend comes with a disadvantage: higher prices.

The most expensive time to check into a hotel is on a Friday, so those Friday to Sunday weekend getaways could mean a very expensive accommodation bill. Similarly, airfares tend to be highest on Fridays and Sundays, adding even more to the cost of your two-night getaway. Trains too tend to be busier on Fridays and Sundays, especially on popular routes between large cities. Are you sensing a pattern here? There is a way around these jacked-up prices, however. By shifting your weekend getaway forward by one day and traveling from Saturday to Monday, you could unlock some substantial savings.

Traveling Saturday to Monday

First, let's talk about airfares. If you're traveling within the U.S., flying out on a Saturday and back on a Monday is on average 10% cheaper than leaving on a Friday and returning on a Sunday. In turn, hotel rates tend to plummet on Sundays thanks to low occupancy rates; leisure travelers have gone, and business travelers haven't arrived yet. By moving your vacation one day forward, you could save on both transportation and accommodation.

There are other ways to save, too. Book your flights one to three months in advance for the cheapest fares, and take one on the chin and fly at unpopular times of day. Early morning and late evening departures are often cheaper than flights that don't have you up at the crack of dawn or landing in the middle of the night. Getting out early on a Monday morning also ensures you'll be back at work in time to not take a full vacation day.