Start the New Year: Zero Stress & Travel For Less

newyearletsvacay Does one of your New Year’s resolutions include seeing the world?! With so many cheaper options and deals to snag online, it is nearly impossible not to take advantage of it. If you want to vacation like a pro in 2017, keep reading on how to travel well and save cash in style.

Airfare

  • Get social. Follow major airlines on Facebook or Twitter. JetBlue, for instance, has deals-only Twitter account, @JetBlueCheeps. Fly from New York to Bermuda direct for $114 for Valentine weekend!
  • Know when to go. Its more expensive to fly out on Fridays and Sundays and cheaper on Tuesday, Wednesday, or Saturday.
  • Purchase on time. Gone are the days to “book on Tuesday by 3 p.m.”, weekends give you a chance to snag the best deals per an industry report. Keep in mind that where you are going plays another role. It’s best to buy domestic flights 8 weeks in advance, the Caribbean 12 weeks out and Europe 24 weeks ahead.
  • If the price drops, ask for a refund. A great to use is Yapta: You book your flight, enter the details and the site alerts you if the price drops. The site will keep you posted when the price reduces to help you get a refund on the difference, free of charge.
  • Cheap connects. What deters most people about connected flights are the possible long layovers. However, most of these flights are cheaper than directs, so plan and take advantage of the layovers. You may be able to see a different city, like New York or Chicago, within 8 hours or so especially if all you are toting is a carry-on. If it’s an overnight layover, read my post here about how to brave an overnight layover like a pro.

Hotels & Lodging

  • Check out hotel-offered packages. Take a peek at major city hotels that offer deals on the weekend. Such deals include free parking, free meals, or discounted passes to the theme parks.
  • Make reservations with the hotel directly. Research the lowest rate on major booking sites and call the hotel’s front desk to see if they can match the deal. You might be able to snag a better view of the city!
  • Rentals get more space for your dollar. There is a better and cheaper way to get more space for your money: Book a rental home or apartment. By using such sites like the popular Airbnb, FlipKey, or VRBO, travelers would be able to enjoy without breaking the bank booking a suite at a premium hotel paying high resort fees.
  • Give extended-stay hotels a chance. These hotels are often on the bottom of the search feed. They may not be fancy or your first choice, but they do offer incentives such as larger living space, kitchenettes and hassle-free parking.
  • Save money and cut food costs. Skip the lush dining experiences at the resorts and buy your own packaged food and snacks from the local supermarkets at your destination.





Rentals

  • Be open to last minute sales. What drives the price down is the excess of inventory or more cars available. With that said, be sure to book early in the prime time and then recheck the rental rates as the arrival date gets closer to take advantage of saving money. Make sure not to prepay and if you did reserve, do not forget to cancel your first reservation.
  • Look for a “mom and pops” rental company at the destination. Most of these small businesses are in competition with bigger names so chances are their prices would be ideal for your budget.

Where do you plan to travel for the new year? I want to know! Leave a comment where and why you want to travel there!