The best way to save money on a vacation is with your overnight accommodations. One of the most enjoyable methods is to pay for a campsite and sleep at a public or private campground, where you can either set up a tent or a tow-behind, pop-up camper. This option is not very expensive, for a small pup tent that fits into the trunk of your car is all you really need. Then again it sure is nice to have a full-sized canopy tent in tow behind your vehicle. Even if you're traveling abroad, camping can be a great way to save some money and see new places. In Europe, for example, you can rent cars and camping gear.
Stay In a Youth Hostel
Many youth hostels tend to be busy and crowded during the popular summer months, but what many travelers sometimes fail to realize is that there are often single, double or family rooms available at many hostels at sometimes very reasonable rates. In fact two people traveling together can rent a double room for about the same price each person would have to pay in a dorm room. If you plan to visit many hostels, it is a good idea to join a hostel organization and reserve your room well in advance.
Visit Latin America or a Third World Country
The American dollar is still strong south of the border and in a few countries like Belize, Panama and Ecuador, the local currency is actually directly tied to the "Yankee dollar." Good deals can be had everywhere from Acapulco, Mexico, to Santiago, Chile. Be aware that certain places like Rio de Janeiro during Carnival get quite expensive and crowded, but overall Latin America is a very good deal.
Do A Bike Tour
Pack your bicycle in a box and put it on the airplane, when you fly. Europe is a particularly friendly place for bike touring, but the adventuresome soul can bike tour almost anywhere in the world. Bike touring means you bring your tent, gas stove and sleeping bag with you on the journey. Do some research before you leave home, so you'll know in advance where the campgrounds are and what the road conditions are. Some countries such as the Netherlands and Denmark are very bike friendly and have some separate routes for bicyclists.
Try a Backyard Vacation
If rest and relaxation are your ultimate goal, then you might want to set up a hammock in your backyard between two trees, put some music on the radio and curl up with a good book. One thing for sure--you'll be well-rested when it is time to return to work.