Planning to visit friends and family over the holiday season? Whether you’re driving, flying or riding the rails, traveling ain’t cheap. So how do you combat the high costs of holiday travel? This blog contains helpful holiday travel tips on how to save money without skimping on amenities.
The holiday season is rapidly approaching. According to the Automobile Club of America (AAA), more than 103 million Americans traveled during the year-end holidays last year. And as we all know, the cost of traveling can be pretty pricey.
But there are ways to get to where you’re going this holiday season…without breaking the bank. Here are some smart ways to save money on travel:
1) Avoid travelling on peak travel days – Flying a day or two before Thanksgiving or Christmas Eve will cost you an arm and a leg. However, if you fly on Thanksgiving Day or Christmas Day, you will pay less.
3) Choose an alternative airport – In some cities, there is more than one airport available to take you on your way. In fact, sometimes an airline will offer more attractive rates at an airport that’s a bit more off the beaten path. So if you’re willing to drive a little out of your way, you might be able to save some money on your airfare.
4) Pack smartly – People sometimes pack more than they actually need for their trip. And since some airlines charge you by the bag, that extra piece of luggage could cost you big time. So if you can pair down your travel belongings to just one bag, instead of two or three, you could save some serious money right there.
5) Ship gifts ahead of you – If you planned on bringing gifts with you, it might make sense to send them on ahead. This way you don’t have to pack an extra suitcase, which could save you money at the airport check-in. Some retail stores can actually ship gifts for you.
6) Look into airline/hotel package deals – Sometimes you can get great deals if you book your airline and your hotel room at the same time. Sites like Travelocity and Expedia are great for these type of travel booking discounts.
And here are some travel tips that won’t save you money, but might help you enjoy your trip with less stress.
1) Map out your route to and from the airport ahead of time – The worst thing in the world is getting lost or stuck in traffic when you’re racing to make your flight. One way to avoid all that anxiety is to plan your travel route in advance. If you plot out your route ahead of time using an online navigational site such as Mapquest, you map out the best worry-free route to the airport. Global Positioning System (GPS) devices are great too. Just program your GPS with your destination, and let the tracking device do the rest.
2) Monitor the weather frequently – If you know that a thunderstorm is expected, allow yourself more time to the get to the airport. Sites like the Weather Channel, can give you hour-by-hour forecast updates. The best surprise is no surprise.
3) Don’t bother wrapping your gifts – If you do decide to bring your presents with you, don’t bother wrapping them. The friendly folks at the TSA might decide to inspect your wrapped packages, for whatever reason. It’s probably a better idea to simply pack wrapping paper separately, and wrap your gifts when you get to your destination.
4) Make a “leaving” checklist – Worrying about whether you locked the front door of your home before you left for the airport is just plain nerve-racking. But you can eliminate this anxious moment by creating a “leaving” checklist. Did you turn off the lights? Did you pull the plugs on the toaster and coffee maker? Did you pack a charger for your smartphone? Stuff like that.
The main point is this: The less things you have to worry about, the more fun you’ll have on your holiday trip.
Finally, all of us at AccuQuote wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and a merry holiday season.