Having a holiday villa all to yourself with your own swimming pool, outdoor barbecue and spectacular views might be idyllic, but can be quite costly.
That's why holiday rentals specialist Owners Direct has revealed a few ways to reduce the costs without compromising on quality or fun on your next holiday.
The website asked its travellers and home owners to give their insider money-saving tips to help others save those all-important pounds or euros.
"Take the mother-in-law on holiday with you to save on expensive childcare costs and babysitters," advises one traveller.
Gillian Chappell, who owns a holiday home in Spain, said: "Shopping for fruit and veg in local markets is fun and cheap too. A good holiday home owner will provide a list of local market days in the property. It's also a good opportunity to practice your Spanish and sometimes you can get even better bargains just by speaking the lingo!"
Another holiday home owner, Caroline Ward, who has a villa in Portugal said: "Always buy toiletries and sun lotions before you go as these things are double the price in most EU countries."
- "Plan ahead as far as you can when booking car parking, car hire, flights/ferry transfer and of course accommodation as you can save hundreds, I do." (Dave, traveller)
- "Don't skimp on accommodation but then eat at home and drink local wine to save money." (Karen Pugh, holiday home owner Portugal)
- "Don't waste money on expensive guide books, instead use websites, local tourist offices and tap into the local knowledge of holiday home owners" (Kate, traveller)
- "Live like a local and shop where they shop and also don't use taxis, take the bus and train instead." (Tanya, traveller)
- "I always book flights when they are at their cheapest even though I don't yet have accommodation. Then nearer the time I book the villa or apartment as sometimes there are great special offers. (Diane, traveller)
Angela Southall, Marketing Manager of Owners Direct said: "Booking accommodation direct with the owner on a site means you are likely to have made a saving compared with the cost of a hotel.
"To make your budget stretch further try renting a property that isn't on the beach as these come at a premium price, don't travel in school holidays unless you have to, go away with family and friends and split the bills and keep an eye on last minute offers from our owners. These might seem obvious but they do mean big savings and more cash for holiday treats such as ice creams and cocktails."
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