Booking travel online often means increasing your chances of catching fantastic deals for your next getaway. From long-haul trips to quick weekend escapes, once you’re in the know, you’ll never look back.
Make the most of your travel budget with simple research.
Ever hear people talking about that great deal they found to a far-flung, exotic island? No doubt, they booked it online. With simple research, you can make the most of your travel budget, in order to invest extra towards fulfilling holiday dreams.
Let’s take a look at how to find the best online travel deals.
Last minute packages can be incredibly cheap, as hotel prices and flights are slashed to fill rooms and seats.
Book in advance or last minute
For the most part, online booking rewards those who book in advance or at the last minute. For example, if your bucket list destination is Rome, try booking six months to a year up front, for early bird specials. When you just want to laze on a tropical island, don’t mind where you go and have the inspiration to do so ‘now’, last minute packages can be incredibly cheap, as hotel prices and flights are slashed to fill rooms and seats.
Compare all sites
The number one rule for online travel, is to compare at least three or four sites, to get the best deal. Don’t rush into decisions because of marketing tools like, ‘hurry to book’ or ‘last room available’. You’ll often find they’re still there the next day and there are always other options. Prices on all sites tend to change daily and some offer flash deals at various times throughout the week.
If you’d like to book an all-inclusive package deal to Thailand, for example, search on sites including Expedia, Skyscanner, Wotif, Webjet and Momondo. Compare prices for complete packages or separate deals for flights and hotels.
It’s also worth having a quick look at the specific websites for airlines and hotels, however they can be more expensive unless they’re offering specials. While it may be a little time-consuming, you’ll be proud of yourself when you find exactly what you want, for a great-value price.
Filter hotel and resort requirements
Filter your options
To save time, know what you want and write a list of all your preferred hotel requirements. It might include price, star-rating, swimming pools, family rooms, playgrounds, restaurants, internet access and air-conditioning.
Most sites have filters, whereby you can tick what you want and sift through the options with ease. As a money saving tip, if you can do without immediate access to the ‘main street of town’, you’ll often find much better standards, at lower prices.
One of the main reasons people are reluctant to book everything online, is the ‘unknown’ aspect. Google, Trip Advisor and more offer travel reviews and ratings. Make sure you look for comments on your specific requirements. For example, if you need to stay connected, check for remarks on the Wi Fi speed. When you want to compare airlines or hotels, many reviews give insight into useful comparisons, so you know exactly what you’re paying for.
Lastly, a little bit of instinct goes a long way. If you’re tossing up between pros and cons for too long, move on to the next deal – the competition is fierce so you never have to settle for second best.
Nicole Leigh West
Nicole Leigh West is the author of fiction novel, 'The Gypsy Trail' and an internationally recognised travel and lifestyle writer.