The lure of the Aegean Sea is strong, and the Greek Islands are something most people place high on their travel to-do lists. However, dream trips are dream trips for a reason and, unfortunately, the expense holds a lot of people back. Below, we’ve assembled a few cost-saving tips to help make your trip to Greece as fun as it is affordable.
Travel in the Off Season
This is an old tip, but it’s as true today as it ever was. Traveling during the off-season isn’t always an option, but because Greece enjoys warm weather almost year-round, there’s rarely a bad time to visit. The traditional season for tourism is from April-August. Crete especially remains a great destination throughout early spring and late fall.
Location, Location, Location
The most well-known destinations in Crete usually include the larger cities like Chania or Heraklion. However, for a quieter, less touristy holiday, places like Mirtos could be a cheaper alternative. True, the small population may be short on nightclubs, but Mirtos (and places like it) give a more authentic sense of the Cretan lifestyle and still provide the stunning beaches visitors crave.
Hostel or Airbnb
Although there are a number of beautiful resorts and hotels in Crete, if you’re looking to get the best value for money, you may want to consider a hostel or property rental. If you are traveling alone or with only a few companions, a hostel can be a great money-saving option. On the other hand, if you have a large group, renting an entire house or apartment through a service like Airbnb may be easier and more cost-effective than renting multiple hotel rooms.
Kids go Free
Greece has many historic attractions and there are plenty of discounts to be found. Historic sites littered throughout Greece offer either significant price differences or free entry for kids and students. Even the Acropolis in Athens is free for students! So be sure to ask at each site to get the discounts applied.
Pack Beach Gear
An easy way to save some money on Crete is to bring your own beach gear. On the larger, more well-established beaches, you pay for beach loungers and umbrellas – usually between 5-7 euros for a set of 2 chairs and an umbrella. If you have a family or larger group, this can become quite expensive after a few days. Even if you just bring a big towel and your own umbrella, over the course of a week-long stay, the impact becomes quite significant.
With beaches, hills, mountains, olive trees and landmarks galore, one way to save money on your Greek holiday is to explore it on foot. Taking safe treks into the wilderness can be a great way to explore the islands without spending anything at all. Over the summer, be sure to pack lots of sunscreen and wide-brimmed hats for the kids. A few great walking locations on the Ionian Islands include the Fanari or Paliki Peninsulas, Crete and Zakynthos.
Keep these tips in mind when booking for Greece and enjoy cheap holidays with lasting memories!