One of the main reasons people are reluctant to go on a holiday vacation is because they can’t afford the crazy prices. Airfare prices can especially be astronomical. But great deals are easier to find than you may think. And even greater savings are available if you’re willing to travel at the last minute. The benefits of spontaneous vacations range from experiencing unanticipated adventures to discovering unbelievable discounts. Whether you book a last minute cruise or accommodations at a spectacular Airbnb property, last minute airfares can almost guarantee a cheap flight to your destination.
Getting the Best Deal
In the United States, 45% of us will take a summer vacation with the most popular destination being beach locations. In addition, the U.S. was the leading source market for cruises in the world with over 11 million people choosing to travel by ship.
That’s a lot of people spending a lot of money to have a lot of fun. But do not fear! It is possible to enjoy traveling without bursting your wallet. Here are a few insights on how to get the best travel deals:
• Be Flexible. Be impulsive, which goes hand-in-hand with not being picky. Whether you are booking a flight at the last minute, or searching for a great deal on airfare, it's much easier to find bargains if you have no particular travel agenda.
This might mean visiting a destination in the off-season, traveling on weekdays, flying very early or late in the day or on indirect flights. If you’re unable to be flexible with your dates, be flexible with your location. And that includes your airport location… changing your airport can save you hundreds of dollars.
• Fast, but Thorough. To get the best last minute deals on travel, you will want to book these incredible deals as soon as you see them. The best savings often get snapped up in minutes. That said, be sure you've read the small print and understand fully what you're getting for your money (and what you're not getting).
• Bundle. You can often save big on your trip when you purchase a bundled package (hotel, car and flight). Or consider an all-inclusive vacation to save on food and beverage costs. The discounts may be even greater when you book a vacation package at the last minute. And don’t forget to ask (in your sweetest voice) for additional perks. Want breakfast included? Sometimes just making a request directly to the hotel will provide you with extras such as free in-room movies, spa discounts and more.
• Follow and Save. You’ll be surprised how many deals you can find on cheap flights and vacation destinations just by following the airline or hotels on their Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. Experts say that smaller airlines tend to be more aggressive in having one-day promo codes that they tweet out, while more established companies like JetBlue and American Airlines often offer flash sales and promotions on social media. Hotels follow the same pattern and may reward their loyal followers’ with a free night stay. You can also use our website to find coupons for companies such as Hotels.com.
And while you are on the world wide web, be sure to check out discount coupon sites including Living Social. These websites feature deals on the best things to do in the city you’ll be visiting, including unforgettable travel packages for destinations both near and far.
• There’s an App for That. Planning a spur-of-the-moment trip doesn’t have to be a hassle or overwhelming. Whether you want to plot a dream holiday away or a weekend getaway at the last minute, technology can now make the task quick and affordable! A quick search will give you the top-rated travel apps to help you grab the best deals.
Last Minute Journeys
Some of the best travel deals come when you decide to book an impulsive last minute vacation. The rates usually become drastically cheaper with a spur-of-the-moment trip.
• Savings on the Sea. To get one of the best deals on your dream cruise, consider “repositioning cruises” which means the ship’s embarkation port and the disembarkation port are different. This occurs because cruise lines must move their ships from region to region depending on the season: Summer in Alaska, winter in the Caribbean and so on. These trips offer heavily discounted one-way vacations that are significantly less than high-season cruises, but still include all the same awesome amenities and services.
Another way to enjoy super savings is booking a last minute cruise. The ship has to sail whether it is full or not, so cruise operators are willing to discount their rooms on the final days to at least acquire some revenue.
• Airlines. The same is true with airfare and finding the best deals. The airlines are willing to offer spare seats at rock-bottom prices in a last ditch effort to fill up a flight. The reasoning is simple; they’d rather sell the empty seats at discounted prices than get nothing at all!
You can enjoy cheap flights if you book in advance, too. If you are willing to fly late at night or insanely early in the morning, the fares are usually cheaper. You’ll get the best deals if you search for flights using a date range search rather than several specific criteria whenever possible.
• Less Hassle. Some of the best bargains for accommodations may not seem obvious at first. But consider an alternative to a standard hotel room. A first-class service like Airbnb can find you a room or apartment instead of an expensive hotel. Not only is this type of housing less expensive, you can enjoy advantage of having access to a kitchen, which can save big bucks on your food bill.
Getting cheap flights to your vacation location means you can use the extra dough toward other items on your trip like shore excursions on a cruise or buying souvenirs. You might even be able use the money you save on a last minute cruise or to extend your vacation or stay an extra night at a nearby Airbnb rental home. It’s time to explore! Use these tips to get great deals on travel for summertime vacations.