3 Ways to Save Money on Holiday Travel
The holiday season isn’t just about shopping and buying gifts, it’s also a time when we travel near and far to spend time with our loved ones. Unfortunately, holiday travel expenses can add up fast. These tips will help you keep your travel spending under control.
- Plan Ahead
One of the easiest things you can do to save money on holiday travel is to plan ahead. The earlier you book your airfare and hotels, the easier it is to find the best deals. Invest some time on the travel sites that allow you to compare airfare and hotel rates so you can get the best deal available.
In general, you can get the best prices on airfare when you book three weeks in advance for domestic flights. For international flights, booking about 30 days in advance is the best way to get a great deal.
While there are always last-minute deals that can save you money, you can’t assume that a better deal will be available — especially during the holidays when there are more travelers. In fact, many experts say that you should book your flight and hotel between one and three months in advance of the high-traffic holiday season. Plan ahead, so you have more opportunities to find the best deals.
- Book Your Flight on Cheaper Days
Whenever you book a flight, some days are cheaper than others. Travelling on Tuesdays and Wednesdays is often less expensive than travelling on Fridays and Sundays.
During the holidays, though, it’s not just about a specific day of the week. You may also need to consider the days surrounding the holiday. Days immediately before and after a holiday can be a great deal more expensive.
One of the best ways to save is to actually plan your trip on the day of the holiday. If you can plan to travel on Thanksgiving Day or Christmas Day, you might be able to find an even better deal.
- Fly into an Alternative Airport
If you are flying, consider arriving at an alternative airport. Flying in to a smaller airport in the same metro area is often less expensive. If you’re traveling to an out-the-way place where fewer flights are available, consider flying into a nearby major destination instead to save on airfare.
Determine how much it would cost you to travel from the alternate airport to your destination. In most cases, the savings from the air travel will still outweigh those other costs.
As your planning your trip, you may also want to sign up for fare alerts from the major airlines or travel sites. If they are offering special fares or the cost drops for a flight you’re interested in, you will be alerted.