The last bank holiday before Christmas is almost upon us! Want to make the most of the long weekend and escape overseas but worried about your wallet? Check out our tips below on how to have a purse pleasing break
Book in advance
Too late now but one to remember for the future. Booking in advance is easy and obvious, yet so few of us do it?! With a bit of forward planning, substantial savings can be made. Travel consultants advise booking up to nine months in advance in order to obtain the lowest fare possible.
You’d think closer would be cheaper, but that’s not always the case. A week-end in the Isle of Arran for example works out much, much more than a sojourn to Spain.
Sleep for free
Couchsurfing matches travellers with people willing to give them a free place to sleep (the pay off comes down the road when the host wants to sleep at another member’s house). The drawback? You don’t know them, they don’t know you. If that doesn’t sound appealing, consider staying in a privately owned apartment through a website such as Airbnb.
Follow the money
Keep an eye on the global exchange rates.
Make the most of your airmiles
Why not make 2013 the year to use all those air miles that you have racked up over the last decade? A couple of things to keep in mind: for vacation spots (hello Hawaii), frequent flier customers are more likely to get a seat in the week. Conversely if you’re travelling to business destinations such as Shanghai or Zurich, chances are you’ll find it easier to book a seat on weekend flights.
Timing is key
Don’t take to the skies when everyone else is – by which we mean avoid Christmas and New Year when the number of people heading to see friends and relatives increases expotentially. It pays to travel after the festive season instead of before (plus you have something, other than the post festive blues, to look forward to). Other times to avoid are half term and, as a rule, any school holiday. For the best possible price, think about travelling during the months of October, November, February and March.
Hotels are looking for your allegiance and extending extra incentives to get it.
Go all inclusive
If you want to avoid sticker shocker at the end of your trip, try turning to all inclusive deals where meals, drinks and activities are included in the rates. If you really can’t face the though of wearing a blue bracelet to breakfast, at least choose a package that combines your hotel and airfare.
By travelling in a group, you can snag significant discounts.