3 ways to travel and give back to charity at the same time

Jul 30, 2016 at 11:00 a.m. ET
Image: Trinette Reed/Getty Images

We may be in the middle of summer, but before we know it, we’ll be sending the kids back to school and pulling our sweaters out of storage. So end summer the right way by taking a trip! Here are some tips to save money on a last-minute vacation. The best part? These tips also manage to give back to charity whenever you use them.

1. Make it a road trip

While it’s tempting to hop on a plane to a far away, exotic location, airline fares and time limits may be keeping you grounded. Instead, opt to hit the road for a planned (or unplanned) road trip. If you don't have a car, you can get a cheap set of wheels, either on an hourly or daily basis, to get you where you need to go. Enterprise donates 2 percent of your rental price back to a charity or cause of your choice. So in addition to giving back, you’re also getting a great deal for your trip!

More: Stay safe in the sun without blowing all your money on sunscreens

2. Look for budget-friendly overnight stays

Search for hotels under $100 that I can book the same day, such as the ones on Hotels.com, which donates up to 3.5 percent of what you spend to a good cause.

If I’m looking for accommodations that are more personal and have a homey feel, another option is HomeAway, a rental marketplace where you can compare accommodations and rent one of your choice for your vacation. I can choose anything from a cabin to a castle or even a farmhouse. In addition to getting discounted rates, HomeAway donates over 12 percent of what you spend.

More: Why I created Goodshop, an app that makes shopping charitable

3. Start planning

Once you’ve narrowed down a location, doing some research beforehand will be great and helpful for planning an itinerary of sights to see and things to do. I really enjoy reading and highly recommend Lonely Planet travel guides, which have over 500 books, including over 70 titles devoted to the U.S., ranging from New York to California. They're also running a promo code from Goodshop that gives back over 7 percent of your purchase.

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Rachel Sacks is a writer for Goodshop. Goodshop can help you find great deals and coupons for a memorable trip while also doing good and giving back.

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