Traveling over the holiday season can be a hit or miss type of experience especially if you’re trying to save money.
If you are willing to bend a little bit, you could make it to grandma’s house in time to see her smile all while saving a few bucks.
Here are some tips that might get you a good deal on last-minute holiday plans, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
1. Go Before or After the Holidays
If you’re willing and able, you might want to consider traveling either before or after the holidays. Doing so might lead to big savings on hotel bookings and airfare. While the price difference you’ll see may depend on where you’re traveling to and from, the savings is almost always there. Check regularly airlines and hotels for special offers before and after key holidays, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
2. Drive Instead of Fly
Depending on where you want to go, you can usually save more money if you drive instead of fly. This may not be possible if you’re traveling to Hawaii or a remote island to get away from it all obviously. But what if you’re traveling a day’s drive or less away? It’s worth looking into if you drive!
3. Check Award Availability for Hotels and Flights
If you have airline miles and hotel points to burn, it’s easy to assume you won’t find award availability over the holiday. The good news is, that isn’t always true — and there are some foolproof ways to use rewards regardless. Do check your airlines of choice for black out days and/or any specials they might be offering, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
You can also consider using flexible rewards for holiday travel. This involves using a credit card that allows you to redeem points for travel you book through its travel portal. These cards also often allow you to request a statement credit for any travel expense, the web site says.
4. Surf the Internet for Last-minute Holiday Deals
If you’re flexible, you might want to let deals guide your plans. By searching the Internet for a rare travel deal around the dates you want to go, you could possibly snag a new destination you have been dreaming about. Sites such as Expedia.com and Priceline.com often post last-minute travel deals, and you can always check out Groupon Getaways to see what’s offered over the holidays.
Also, SecretFlying.com and TheFlightDeal.com post new travel deals to various destinations regularly, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
5. Be Open to Flying Other Times
Book your trip on the holiday or the day before the holiday. Be aware, this may or may not work or not depending on where you’re flying, competition for the route, etc. It never hurts to check, right? Regardless of where you are headed, it’s best to figure out which days are cheapest and whether flying on an actual holiday will help you save money.
6. Go for a Vacation Package
Vacation packages that include flights and airfare can be the best way to save. Search for packages on sites such as Expedia, Priceline, and CheapCaribbean.com, and you may find packages for up to 40 percent off. Keep in mind though, not all vacation packages are always a good deal. Before you book, make sure to price out airfare, hotels, and other inclusions separately to see how much you’re really saving, if anything, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
7. Register for Newsletters
Most major airlines, travel booking sites, and hotel brands offer newsletters that feature special sales and discounts. By signing up, you will get these announcements and be able to jump on the holiday bandwagon, according to the web site Wisebread.com.
8. Always be Flexible
The biggest way to save on holiday travel is to be flexible. By being flexible with dates and where you travel, you’ll leave yourself open to finding the best deals available.