SPOKANE, Wash. - The holiday weekend may be behind us, but there's still plenty of time to get in a summer road trip. But it can be a struggle to hit the road without going over your travel budget.
There's a lot of reasons to take a road trip, but best of all is the flexibility. There's no tickets, no change fees and most important no security lines. But, the extra costs of hitting the highway add up.
Most people think they'll be saving money on the road, but according to experts, most people actually tend to splurge too much.
But first, the good news. Gas prices for the year may have finally peaked.
Drivers paid the highest average for gas price since 2008 over the holiday weekend. But now prices are starting to ease back down. And experts say the prices could keep going down thanks to lowering oil prices.
Even with high gas prices, it may not be the gas that sends travelers over the edge.
Experts say road trippers splurge too much of their money on food. When consumers hit the road, too often their good health habits go by the wayside.
They say it's important to stick to your diet because food is such a big wallet buster.
Also, experts say to plan ahead. Don't get on the road only to realize you didn't bring enough food and have to stop to buy more. Pick the restaurants you want to visit ahead of time and pack your own snacks for in-between.
Another overlooked expense is parking, especially in big cities. You can research garages ahead of time to find the best deals.
And don't forget to use your smartphone as a tool. Make sure you look into hotels when booking last minute so you don't break your budget.