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      Money Talks News: Simple Steps to Save on Summer Vacation

      Whether you hit the road or take to the skies, summer is a popular time for vacation. According to travel site Orbitz, nearly 80 percent of Americans are planning one this year.

      And what happens when everyone's trying to fly, drive and stay during the same season? Well, higher prices. But there are some ways to save.

      First, the obvious: book early for the best deals and pay early to spread out the cost and avoid debt.

      Step two: gather your points. If you earn reward points with credit cards, see what you can swap for flights or rooms.

      Step three: avoid crowds. Popular winter destinations, like Florida beaches and maybe ski resorts too, are much less expensive in the summertime.

      You can also ask a travel agent for help, especially with International destinations.

      Step four: pay a little extra for a kitchen and you'll pay a lot less for restaurants. And when you do eat out, always snag coupons.

      Another idea: plan with your friends. Pooling resources can net you nicer place, like a house, for less.

      Final step: Save on entertainment.

      Every city offers free entertainment. Pick up a local paper, or better yet, talk to the locals. And take advantage of memberships.

      Join a museum in your area, before you leave, that offers discounts around the country.

      Bottom line... summer is not your saving season, but where there's a will, there's a way.

      Two main things: start early, like day before yesterday and be creative. Want more ideas? They're waiting for you at moneytalksnews.com.

      Just do a search for "summer vacation." For Money Talks News, I'm Stacy Johnson.