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With its steely skyscrapers, top chef and rocking festivals – the Windy City of Chicago will blow you away with its low-key cultured awesomeness. Hence, a trip to the city is in everyone’s bucket list. But being the top tier travel destination of the country, a trip to Chicago can rack up a heavy assault on your wallet.

From flight tickets to individual travel destinations, it is hard to balance out the expenses while having fun and living up to the experiences. But there is an escape to this turmoil, and that are travel hacks.

A lot goes into planning the trip, and there are many areas in which you can save your hard-earned dollars.

Here’s how you can live your ‘Chicago tourist dream’ without burning a hole in your pocket:

  1. Stick to a Food Budget

It’s easy to slip and commit serious budget blunders while dining in Chicago, a city famous for world-class restaurants and an ensemble of the finest cuisines. Ditch the fancies and try out the local eateries of the city. A lot awaits you on the streets, from a classic Chicago-style hot dog to a deep-dish pizza, if you stick to the locals, you can do with a wallet of $30 a day.

  1. Prioritize Public transportation

The real charm of a city as lively as Chicago is in enjoying its public transportation. Not only will you meet the locals, who will willingly exchange stories, you will also save a ton by refraining from separate Uber, Lyft and/or Rental car bills–not to forget parking tickets and all that shebang.

  1. Grab the ‘Free Activities and Attractions’ itinerary

Squeeze the Chicago fun on a Budget by taking the advantage of free activities and attractions available wildly throughout the city. Being the capital, the city is an epicenter to a lot of fun (and free) festivals. You can sync your trip to some of the festivals such as the Chicago Blues Festival (June), Grant Park Music Festival (June – August), Chicago Gospel Music Festival (June) and the Chicago Jazz Festival (August), among others. Some of the free attractions in the city are Millennium Park, Navy Pier, and Magnificent Mile, which don’t cost a penny and are worth spending a day in.

  1. Invest in a Chicago CityPASS

 The Chicago CityPASS offers nine consecutive days worth jam-packed tourist attractions in Chicago. The pass allows free access to 25+ of Chicago’s top attractions, including Skydeck Chicago, Shoreline Architecture River Cruise, Hop-on Hop-off Big Bus Tour, Art Institute of Chicago, Navy Pier Rides, among others. Vacation on a budget has never been easier.

  1. Travel in Off-Season

Traveling off-season is a premium hack, which can save you hundreds of dollars. Off-season travels allow you to enjoy the lowest fares for flights, hotels, and club passes. The Summer and winter months host the most crowd of the year, whereas streets begin to empty from early March to late June and late August to early November.

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