FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – As COVID-19 restrictions have greatly loosened this summer, more Americans are venturing out on vacations. 

“People are feeling more comfortable going out, vacations are definitely on the brain, whether they are, you’re jet setting or you’re going somewhere local,” said Rebecca Gramuglia, a consumer expert. “People are ready to travel and do fun things with their family or themselves.”

A survey conducted by, found that 50 percent of Americans say that their spending increases over the summer with 39 percent using money for family vacations.

With families planning trips and increasing their spending, here are some tips to help save money this summer: 

  • Always plan ahead. 

“Whether it’s a week in advance, two weeks, a month, months in advance planning ahead is always key when you are booking travel,” said Gramuglia. “Anything that you can do to eliminate any stress that may come with the vacation, and that can save you money, it’s definitely important.”

Gramuglia suggested researching nearby restaurants and if you can, purchase discounted gift cards ahead of time. The same goes for any excursions. This way travelers can avoid any day-of fees. 

Another suggestion from Gramuglia is to plan out your packing so you don’t face any baggage fees at the airport. 

  • Don’t assume you’re getting the best deal. 

Gramuglia said travelers should take advantage of money-saving, cash back sites, to score additional discounts for their trip. 

“We are big fans of stacking the savings so that means seeing if there’s any additional promotions, coupon codes, whatever it may be that you can add on,” said Gramuglia. 

Vacationers can also install any money saving tools to their computers, such as a browser extension. Once installed, the extension will notify shoppers when cashback deals are available and can be applied for, according to Gramuglia.  

“Having an extension that can pop up and notify you when you were on a site that you can earn money back on or any like coupon codes, makes it a lot more simpler to just click a few buttons and it applies and you shop as you normally would,” said Gramuglia. 

  • Use an incognito browser. 

It’s common for third-party websites to use your search history, previous purchases and cookies to inflate prices on flights and hotels you’ve had your eye on. 

To avoid this, simply open an incognito browser when looking for travel deals.

“If you see a good deal online, maybe check it out in incognito mode and seeing if there is any difference, and that way you can make the best decision for you and your family when you’re going on vacation,” said Gramuglia. 

  • Research travel credit cards with sign-up bonuses.

Gramuglia’s final suggestion was to look into travel credit cards that offer large sign-up bonuses to help save up for and pay off your vacation.

Travelers should make sure to also review your credit card provider’s rewards program before planning your vacation so you know how you can utilize your reward miles or points on all aspects of their trip. 

Always check the terms of the sign-up bonuses.