Miami on a budget: 6 travel hacks to save on your trip
Traveling in Miami while saving money is not as hard as you might think. There are so many ways that you can help your bank account out when you visit Miami, from making your own food in your hotel room to skipping a car rental and staying close to the things that you want to do while you visit. Your travel budget can be tight without limiting your ability to make sure that you have fun in this lovely city.
If you have never visited Miami, keep things simple and drop off any unneeded bags at a Miami Bounce luggage storage. We will keep your bags safe while you head out to enjoy the best deals that the city has to offer you. Having your hands free can make all the difference in your Miami travel experience, and we can offer you peace of mind about your things being stored without charging you an arm and a leg.
Cheap places to stay in Miami
If you are not sure which of the various neighborhoods in Miami you want to stay in to save money, a little research will go a long way. Depending on where you stay, you might enjoy free access to attractions and budget-friendly hotels in various parts of the city when you visit Miami. Places like Miami Beach can be expensive to stay in, but you can plan your dream vacation by staying just outside of this location instead.
Consider hostel stays if you want to save some extra money, or get a regular hotel room and get a rollaway bed for your extra guest. There are lots of ways to make your hotel budget go further that many people may not be aware of. You can count on these budget-friendly hotels to give you access to the kind of hotel experience that you normally have to pay extra for at bigger hotel chains.
This is a hostel-style hotel that is hip and really trendy-looking while also being comfortable and welcoming. The building that this hostel is housed in is a 1930s Art Deco building that oozes with charm, and the lovely courtyard out back offers you access to a pool and the sunshine throughout most of the day.
There are various fun cocktail bars nearby, like 27 Restaurant, and you will be a five-minute walk from the Bass Museum of Art at this location as well. Tooms start at $60 a night, but you can get private rooms for $80-$100.
Life House Little Havana
Popular with business travelers, this cool location is actually a heritage home on a small Little Havana street. You will get great value here for your money with comfortable rooms complete with Cuban decor and a lovely terrace and bar area. There are also hostel-style "Bohemian Suites" with bunk beds which can be shared by friends who are traveling on a budget.
This location starts at about $130 a night, which is an excellent value considering your location in Little Havana and all the amenities that are offered during your stay.
Boutique hotels are often a great way to save money and still enjoy a cozy room with great service. This lovely little hotel is in South Beach in the Fifth District, and it is an adults-only hotel. This means that you can enjoy a quiet stay, even in shared spaces like the morning cafe, where you might head for breakfast. The rooms have beds that can be converted to king beds or remain as two twins, making it easy to travel here with friends or a partner.
Rooms start at $100 a night, but that includes breakfast daily, and you get wi-fi here, which makes the slightly higher price worth every penny.
Cheap things to do in Miami
Finding affordable things to do is easy in Miami. You might be surprised at just how affordable your trip can be when it comes to attractions and keeping busy every day.
Head to Bayfront Park
Bayfront park is one of those locations that you can visit without spending a dime, or you can decide to spend a little money on the attractions here that interest you. There is a waterfront park area that is ideal for people-watching and sunbathing, or you might want to visit the Bayside Marketplace to do a little shopping or have a snack.
There are also often free performances in this area by local musicians, or you might see street performers having fun and creating a spectacle. Bayfront Park can be enjoyed for hours, or you might just want to head here to have a little snack and enjoy the sun.
Go to the Beach
Heading over to Miami Beach is something that many people look forward to when they are planning a trip to this city. You can easily spend the whole day here for free, or you can spend about $20 and rent an umbrella and some lounge chairs for a more comfortable afternoon in the sun.
This beach offers white sand, volleyball nets in front of some of the local restaurants along the shore, and swimming in the ocean for when you get too warm on the sand.
History Miami Museum
The History Miami Museum is a lot like the Smithsonian, and you can enjoy access to all the amazing exhibits here for $10 or less. Students can get in for $8, and there are some free access days that are scattered throughout every month as well. Free family days are a big hit for those traveling with kids, and this is one of the best travel hacks to keep kids busy while you are in Miami.
Enjoy access to exhibits about the local Native American tribes as well as science and art exhibitions that will teach everyone in your group something new.
Cheap places to eat in Miami
Eating out can actually be affordable in Miami. If you don't want to have to eat your own meals in your hotel room during your stay in this amazing city, you can save money eating at these great locations. There are also lots of incredible street food vendors in Miami that will be happy to feed you for a reasonable price.
This chain of sandwich shops can be found in various locations around Miami, some of them quite convenient to the beach if that is what you have been planning to do with your day. This is a great place for huge sandwiches at a great price that are made with fresh ingredients and delicious sauces.
You should expect to spend about $10 or less for a very filling meal at this little sandwich outlet. You might even be able to split these large sandwiches in multiple ways, which can make this option one of the most affordable choices in the city.
There are many Italian eateries in Miami, and they definitely serve some tasty Italian food. This pizzeria will offer you a huge slice of New York-style pizza for less than $4. You can get a Sicilian slice for another 20 cents. This is a great place to grab and go since the eating area is so small, but you won't mind since you can take your delicious pizza and head out to enjoy the sun.
La Camaronera Seafood Joint and Fish Market
This is an unassuming little shop and market that serves up delicious food that is famous among locals. You should make sure to head here for their pan con minuta sandwiches that are filled with hunks of fresh-caught snapper or breaded shrimp and lobster. These huge and filling sandwiches are $8, while smaller plates will only cost you $4 or so. Make sure to enjoy the dessert menu here as well before you leave on adventures around the city.
Cheap bars in Miami
Heading out for a night on the town doesn't have to be hard on your wallet in Miami. These great locations will make it easy to chill and sip on a cocktail or a beer with a great view for an affordable price. Enjoying a night out on the town can be really simple and affordable in Miami.
You might be able to enjoy drinks and snacks throughout your trip without breaking the bank. Be sure that you avoid places that have a cover charge if you are worried about extra fees and charges. Local bars and hangouts will always be more affordable than sky bars or nightclubs in this town.
Lost Boy Miami
This charming English-style pub offers delightful and creative cocktails as well as great tap beers in a cozy atmosphere. They are open until 3 am, and you can enjoy happy hour in the afternoon if you want to save even more money. Cocktails like the Cherry Blossom Cosmo are only $14, and you can get beer for $8 a pint. Their happy hour deals are excellent, with half-off combinations of spirits and pints as well.
The Lido at the Standard Hotel
With views of Biscayne Bay, this hotel bar has a great happy hour and is the right place to head for a sunset view and affordable drinks and snacks. The beer will run you about $9 a pint, and cocktails range from $10-$16. During happy hour, most prices are cut in half.
Mac's Club Deuce
This bar has been in Miami since the 20s, and if you love a good dive bar, this is the place for you. You can play pool, relax in comfortable chairs and tables, and quench your thirst with affordable drinks here. Beer will cost you about $6 a pint, and mixed drinks are usually no more than $10.
Bonus Budget Tips for Miami
Don't rent a car
Avoid renting a car in Miami. Not only are the rental car costs higher here than in other places, you will pay a lot for parking if you are keeping your car around during your trip but not using it. You will save money overall just walking or using public transportation to get around the city.
Consider exploring the city by bike if you want to see a lot in one day without renting a car or being annoyed by ridesharing pickups. This will cost you about $10-$20 for an entire day of rental time. You can see so much of the city with a bike that would be hard to access if you used your car.
Find cheap flights
Consider flying into Fort Lauderdale to save some money on your flight as well. You will have a small commute to get to Miami, but you will save a lot of money on your ticket to offset this other fee. Fort Lauderdale can be much easier to navigate as well, which is great if you hate struggling through long lines at the airport.
If you have saved a lot of money on public transportation or trying to negotiate prices when possible, you might be able to see all of the various attractions that you had on your list while still being within budget. However, if you have ended up with travel dates that are more expensive than usual or your debit card was declined, you might not be sure how to spend your time in Miami.
This guide to the best free things to do in Miami can help you to make the most of your time in the city without having to even look at your bank account. You don't have to be a travel blogger to be offered access to some of the best things to do in the city for free. There are many ways that you can enjoy access to Miami, and not all of them require that you have a bunch of money in your pocket.