Many people travel during the holidays, whether it is just across the state or across the country. Traveling can be quite expensive, especially around the holidays, when the industry raises rates. With gas prices soaring these days, you are probably looking to save everywhere you can so you can get home to you loved ones. Every year as we look to travel back to Florida to visit family, I’m always trying to scout out the best holiday travel deals and find tips for other ways to save money on holiday travel.
Make sure to pin these tips so you can refer back to them every holiday season!
All is not lost, weary traveler. Here are several ways to use holiday travel deals and other tips to save money on your holiday trips.
Holiday Travel Deals and Tips for Saving on Holiday Travel
1. Buddy up. If you have relatives who live near you or on your way to your final destination, pick them up. If there are a lot of them, consider renting a van and having everyone chip in on the cost. It will be a lot cheaper than everyone taking separate cars, depending on your distance.
2. Book hotel rooms now. If you won’t be staying with friends or relatives, make sure you book your rooms now before they fill up. As they start to fill, you may run out of options and be stuck with a higher priced room. For savings on your hotel room, look for holiday travel deals and coupons on websites like hotelcoupons.com (link to http://hotelcoupons.com/ )
3. Shop early for the best holiday travel deals on flights. The earlier you shop, the better, but surely you need to book by October for Thanksgiving travel and mid-November for Christmas and New Year’s Travel.
4. Travel when other people don’t like to. For example, don’t book your flight from Wednesday through Sunday over the Thanksgiving week. This is the busiest time and airlines like to add extra to flights during this time to take advantage of it. Instead, decide with your family that you will do Thanksgiving on a different day than the actual holiday or postpone it.
5. Ship your luggage rather than fly with it. Carry-on prices are no longer what they were. If you ship your luggage and even you gifts to your destination, you can avoid the fees and pay way less. The Postal service now offers flat rate shipping that is one price per box size, up to 70 pounds and it is way less than some of the airline’s $45 carry-on bag fees.
6. If you end up procrastinating on getting your flights and travel booked, make sure to check out the last-minute holiday travel deals offered though travel sites like Expedia. Just be aware that most of the time these are the undesirable rooms, flight times and days so you might not get what you want exactly and will have to remain flexible.
7. If you are going to fly, have someone drop you off or take a cab. Airports like to hike the price of their parking lots during the holidays and leaving your car there can cost you a pretty penny.
8. Buy gifts when you reach your destination or if you are going to travel with them, don’t wrap them. Wrapping them is wasted time and money since airport security will most likely unwrap them.
9. Fly out on Christmas or Thanksgiving and stay for a while after the holiday rather than before. You can save a lot on flights on the actual holiday because no one wants to fly on these days so airlines discount on the holiday itself.