By Melissa Tosetti
In your part of the country it may not feel like it, but the official start of summer is just three months away. If you want to take advantage of those great travel deals, you have to act now!
First, decide where you want to go. Next, decide when you want to go. Then, start doing research. By beginning your search this far in advance, you’ll give yourself plenty of time to keep an eye out for and take advantage of those deals.
Some of our favorite travel resources are:
Type in where you want to go, from what airport and when you want to go and you’ll start receiving email notifications of the best airfares. After a few days or weeks, you’ll have a good idea of when to pull the trigger on those flights.
I love this website! Not only does it offer information on the best travel deals, but it also tells you about affordable travel destinations you may have not even heard of before. For example, one of my clients wanted to go to the Galapagos Islands specifically to kayak among the Bioluminescent plankton. A few weeks after one of our meetings, I read an article on BudgetTravel.com about Bioluminescent Bay in Puerto Rico, which offers the same experience, for a fraction of the price. I immediately sent the article to my client.
I am now a mad advocate of Groupon Getaways after our own fantastic Italian vacation through one of their deals. But you have to hurry! The deals sell out quickly.
Even if you have budget constraints, working with a travel agent can be a smart move. When booking travel online, you often purchase separate components of your trip and it can easily exceed your budget. In working with an agent, they figure out how much your trip is going to cost you in total before booking anything.
Also, if you don’t know the area you’re going to, it’s too easy to opt for a “just out of Rome” hotel room. Once you arrive, you realize it costs you $20 each time you want to go into Rome. Very quickly you have blown your budget and wasted time just getting to your destination.
One More Tip
If you haven’t already, open a savings account dedicated to travel. It’s imperative that you keep your travel money separate from your other savings. It’s too easy for your savings to get tangled and spent on other things. This also gives you an opportunity to see your travel savings account build, which is motivating to save even more!