I love a good bargain and there is no better feeling than finding a brilliant travel deal. Although many think its expensive to travel, (heck I get asked how I afford it all the time!), travelling is quite easy if you know where and how to find a great bargain, whether it be on flights, a hotel or a weekend away. Here are my top tips on how to find great travel deals!
Finding Great Flight Deals:
Be Flexible: My first tip for looking for a bargain airfare is to be flexible. Fly mid-week, move your trip by a day, add on an extra night or two or maybe even reduce it – the more flexible you are when booking flights, the better the deal you will find. When you’re pricing flights online, most airlines will show prices for a day or two either side of the ones you selected to help you find the best deal – my advice? Pay attention to the guide! Great flight deals can be found easily once you’re flexible.
Do your Research: Secret Flying, Kayak and Skyscanner are all must visit websites for those looking to research great flight deals and becoming familiar with these websites is a must. Secret Flying will alert you to any incredible deals on flights, Kayak is fantastic for those who want to receive flight price changes to their email (I use this all the time!) and Skyscanner is a brilliant tool for finding the cheapest fare across multiple airlines in one go. If you get used to using these three websites on a regular basis, you’ll be shoulder deep in sale fares in no time!
Sign up for Airline Emails: I firmly believe in signing up for ebulletins from the airlines I use most. By doing so, you’ll be first to hear of any great deals and offers! Not all will be of value but those special few that come with titles such as €1 flights will make signing up really worth it!
Consider flying indirectly: If you’re travelling long haul and the direct route to your destination is to costly, considering flying indirectly to get an even better deal! Many indirect options will offer a nice connection as well meaning it won’t make a massive difference to your journey length. I fly indirectly quite a lot as it saves a lot of money – which goes towards attractions and shopping on the trip!
Finding Great Hotel Deals:
Follow Hotels on Facebook: One of the ways I stay on top of great hotel deals is by following some of my favourite hotels on Facebook! I find that many hotels use Facebook as a tool for promoting great deals and so its worth following your favourite ones so that you can find a great deal from time to time.
Keep an eye on Groupon and Pigsback: For Irish hotel breaks, I find Groupon and Pigsback great. Not only do they feature many fabulous hotel deals for around Ireland, they often have offers on dining in hotels, spa days and more! Sometimes they will even have European getaways featured.
Use Booking.com: Booking.com is one of my favourite sites and I know I’ve mentioned that many times before in my blogs. They have great deals on hotel accommodations, they are very flexible, offer free cancellation on many hotels and you don’t have to pay until you arrive. A brilliant website for hotel deals.
Don’t be afraid of Package Holidays:
Trust your Local Travel Agent: There’s a perception out there that package holidays are bad value and that doing the whole travel thing online is cheaper yourself. This is of course true in some cases but in a lot of them, its not. Tour Operators and Travel Agents are in the business of finding great deals and as a result, you should never rule them out when looking for a bargain! Tour America are a great example of an Irish owned Tour Operator who feature their best deals online. Orlando holidays including flights and hotel from only €439pp? That sounds good to me! 😀
Keep an eye on the Windows: Travel Agencies will always display their best deals in their windows and you’d be surprised how effective this old school way of marketing specials still is! When passing by, keep those eyes open and you might just grab yourself a brilliant deal!
Mind your Money: Ok its not a deal finding tip as such, but did you know that if you purchase a package holiday through a Tour Operator that you, and your money are protected by law and the Package Holiday Protection Act? If you book your flights and hotel online separately, you are not protected. Worth thinking about!
General Tips on finding the best Travel Deals:
Pay attention to Social Media: I find so many great deals on social media. How do I find them? I follow pages of those who share great deals; hotels, airlines, travel agents and I pay attention. Don’t just scroll past that Sponsored Post because you never know, it might be of interest to you!
Join Travel related Facebook Groups: I’m a member of countless travel groups on Facebook and I find them great for chatting with like-minded travel people. I suggest joining some and you never know, you might for countless great deals!
Pick up a Sunday Newspaper: Ok I’m aware we live in a digital age but did you know that the Sunday Papers (espeically here in Ireland!) are a mecca for great travel deals!? Most companies advertise their best specials for the week ahead in the Sunday papers so why not starting buying them when you’re looking to book your next holiday!
Be Flexible: Being flexible is essential to finding great deals. I can’t stress that enough. My holidays never start on a Saturday and there is reason for that – flying and travelling mid-week is cheaper. Do it and save!
Work around Holidays and Peak Season: I will never travel at peak season (Easter, Halloween, Christmas, July / August). Peak time travel equals massive jumps in fares and prices and for me, that’s just not worth it. You’ll also have a nicer holiday experience outside of peak travel times as destinations will be less crowded.
Book early for Lower Prices: I work in the travel industry and I cannot stress how great booking early is! You get to be excited for months, you get to have time to save and most importantly, you get the best deals! Booking early guarantees you a great price and I will for that reason, always book in advance. Of course you can take the chance and book near to departure, but for me, that’s not worth the risk as prices can rise so quickly.
So there you have it, my top tips for finding the best travel deals! 2017 is a new year, its a new 365 page book that’s blank for you to fill with stories and memories so why not explore the world and fill your book with adventure!
Where will 2017 take you? Tell me in the comments below!