Summer travel too expensive? Some ways to save money this year

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- While experts say it is best to book your summer travel plans now, a new report shows millions of people will ditch a summer vacation because they cannot afford it. But it doesn't have to be out of reach.

Ditching summer travel? You're not alone.

A new report shows 39 million adults will not be taking a summer vacation this year because they cannot afford it.

According to a Bankrate survey, the average expense is $1,979.

But don't let that keep you home.

Travel experts say a little planning can keep costs low without skimping out on the fun.

RELATED: Why you might want to consider travel insurance

"Having a good vacation experience really comes down to being prepared and doing a bit of research," said Dayvee Sutton, Travel Expert & Host.

The biggest expense is usually airfare, so experts say follow these three steps to save big.

First, be flexible when it comes to when and where you can go.

Next, consider traveling in the off season.

RELATED: QUICK TIP: Get a group discount on your next vacation

Or better yet, experts recommend you book travel in the shoulder season which is between peak and off season.

"You might compromise a little bit on weather, but you can save on your accommodations and experiences," Sutton said.

And finally, use online tools and apps to research, plan, and book the cheapest options for airfare and accommodations.

"You don't have to worry about tracking it. It will send a notification right to your phone," Sutton said.

And remember you don't have to go at it solo. Experts say a travel agent can typically book your vacation for free because they charge the vendors. Not you.

Sutton also says you can tell the travel agent what your budget is, and they will work to get you what you want.

Take a look at more stories by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.

Copyright © 2019 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.