(BPT) - Where will your travels take you this summer? Are you planning a trip to an exotic island, or are you hitting the road? Wherever you're headed, preparing for a great trip takes smart planning. Here are five simple tips for planning your next vacation.
1. Setting your itinerary early. Itineraries can help you make the most of every moment of your trip. Try to schedule outdoor activities for prime weather days, and book event tickets in advance to shows, museums and more. Also, to spend more time having fun and less time in the car, plan activities that are nearby. Don't forget to schedule free time in your itinerary, and make sure to check with every traveler in your group so that everyone is happy.
2. Finding and financing a car at your fingertips. If you've been holding off on that car purchase you've been thinking about, summer is a perfect time to shop - especially if you have a road trip planned. Bank of America's mobile car shopping tool makes finding and buying a car easier and more efficient. Search for the car you want, find the closest dealer and price that suits you, and apply for a Bank of America loan - all through the app.
3. Expanding your housing options. Not all vacations need to include a hotel. Leave more cash for adventures by skipping the expensive resort and instead rent an affordable apartment or house. Renting often offers more space and amenities, such as a kitchen and laundry, which also saves some extra dollars.
4. Shipping when you shop. If shopping is a favorite pastime when you're on vacation, don't be afraid to ask retailers to ship your purchases home to save you carrying them around for the rest of the day or packing them in your suitcase when you head home. Another perk, you may avoid being taxed on the items if they are being shipped out of state.
5. Keeping your essentials with you. When traveling, keep valuable items like your wallet, phone and a spare change of clothes with you at all times in a smaller bag. This way if your suitcase is lost or stolen, you'll have a way out of a sticky situation. It's also a good idea to take a quick photo of your driver's license and credit cards using your phone. This way if you misplace your wallet, you can still pull up the information quickly.
Most importantly - start planning now
When it comes to planning summer travel, there's no time like the present. The time you save with smart planning before you hit the road will pay off when your trip is smoother and simpler. To learn more about the Bank of America mobile car shopping tool, visit www.bankofamerica.com.