One of my favorite family trips was our spring vacation at Walt Disney World, in Florida. My kids loved the roller-coaster rides, but the highlight for me was saving nearly $400 in airfare. Netting my little windfall was easier than you might think: Just surfing the Web and making a couple of phone calls helped me uncover big bargains. In fact, a little up-front investigating can save a family hundreds--even thousands--of dollars on their vacation, says Bill McGee, a Consumer Reports travel-industry expert. Before you pack your bags, follow our money-saving steps for a great family vacation.