With these groups, you can buy into a trip and pay monthly. Most have a single supplement if you don’t want to share rooms. It is important, however, to note their policies on what happens when enough persons do not sign up.
- Track flights to see when it’s the cheapest and best time to travel to your chosen destination.
- Get data on the price trends for the destination you’ve selected. You can then make an informed decision when buying your ticket.
- Get suggestions on places to visit in the destination you’ve chosen.
- Explore the cost to visit cities around your home airport.
Another tip when planning your vacation is to look for the hubs of the airlines you are interested in. While it won’t be a direct flight, it most times will be cheaper. I have found that on certain routes, direct is always more expensive. You can get flights cheaper by booking two separate round-trip flights, especially when using a hub that tends to have deals to your desired location. Yes, you might have to sleep at the airport for the night or find somewhere to stay nearby. The saving will sometimes cover this, and you’ll still have change left. look for hotels that offer a free shuttle. However, make sure there is a day or two in between in case of any delays.
Don’t book with a few hours in between for transit!! Some locations even offer stop-over tours and the prices are generally very reasonable (when arranging through the airport or your airline). So you’ve now decided on a flight, what’s next?
Planning your vacation activities
When you searched for flights, you probably also researched activities you might enjoy. I always start by looking up articles, blogs, and videos on YouTube to see if any pique my interest. You might be wondering why not book the accommodation next! However, for me, I love doing a variety of activities on my holidays. The activities directly influence where I stay and for how long.
Planning where to stay
I use all the major sites to research properties to stay. However, Booking and Expedia are my first choices. I also look at Airbnb as they have some of the same properties listed on the major sites. I discovered an outstanding deal on Airbnb when visiting Tofo in Mozambique. Booking and Expedia had the same property, but with a different cancellation policy. With this in mind, two important tips to consider are:
- Pay close attention to the cancellation policy when planning your trips.
- Always look at a majority of the reviews on a variety of websites.
As mentioned before, when planning where to stay I tend to use Expedia and Booking since I am a part of their reward program. Booking for example has their Genius program where they offer 10 – 20% discounts on a number of properties. For some of these properties depending on your Genius level (they only have 3 levels) you can also get free room upgrades and free breakfast. To join this program all you need to do is to sign up. To move up in levels there is a certain amount of bookings you need to make through their platform. I especially love their price match guarantee, where if you find the property with the same rates and conditions on a different site, they will refund the difference. I have benefited from this at least 3 times so far.
With Expedia’s rewards program, you will get a 10% discount on select properties just for signing up. Also, check their mobile and in-app prices as well to see which has the biggest discounts. If you book a flight with them and then add accommodation in the same country, there are also additional discounts.