According to the majority of sources on travel statistics, this year is expected to be a busy one for holiday travel. Whether you’re going home for Thanksgiving, Christmas or Hanukkah, you can bet that the price of an airline ticket is going to be higher than last year, too. Here are five tips that help you save money on your holiday travel, including airport parking.
The number one thing to keep in mind when booking your holiday air travel is the law of supply and demand. Most people will want to book a flight the day or so before Christmas or Hanukkah and return one or two days afterward, and will prefer Friday or Sunday departures. Obviously, those days are going to cost more because more travelers desire them. If you can be a bit flexible and leave midweek or stay longer so you’re not departing on the peak day, you’ll get a better deal. In fact, you could save up to 50 percent by departing on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday!
You can save even more money if you completely avoid traveling during the week surrounding the holiday. For instance, if you’re okay celebrating Christmas before or after the actual day, you’ll find the lines shorter and the airfare much cheaper. Sure, most of us want to celebrate on the “real” holiday, but if you have a large family or several different groups to visit, this might be a very feasible alternative to spending a small fortune on holiday travel while allowing everyone to have a turn with different members of the family.
Not only is the airport going to be extremely busy over the holidays, but so will the parking lots surrounding it. Do yourself a favor and reserve a spot in advance at an offsite parking facility. This offers several advantages for the holiday flyer. For one, it guarantees you a spot to park your car. For another, it usually always costs less that parking onsite – and if you can find an online coupon for the parking provider, it’s even cheaper. Take the stress and hassles out of finding a secured parking spot and getting to the terminal on time when you travel for the holidays this year by reserving it in advance.
If there’s a large group of you traveling together, don’t take the easy way out and look for a batch of tickets with a single airline on a single flight. You’ll end up paying the highest rate found on one seat for all of your seats. Instead, look for availability for two passengers at a time and book your air travel that way. You may not all be seated together on the flight, but you will pay less.
You’ve probably heard advice that recommends you buy your airline tickets long before the holiday season so that you get the flight you desire. But doing so can mean you’ll pay far more than you need to. Think about it – airlines are counting on holiday flights being full so the earliest rates for those flights will be expensive. But as the time draws nearer and there’s still seats left, the airline will usually discount them just so they fill the flight. Don’t wait until the very last minute, though, because you’ll pay a premium for necessity.
When it comes to saving money for holiday travel, there are ways to do it. Just remember that timing is everything and reserving your flight at just the right time while booking your airport parking ahead of time allows you to stay in your budget.
So many people travel for important holidays that you may be quite disappointed with the cost of it. There are great ways you can save money though whether you are traveling by plane, train, or bus to get to your destination for the holidays. It is essential that you book your travel arrangements early. You don’t want to be stuck without a way to get where you want to be for the holidays due to everything being sold out. You also want to take your time to compare prices.
You will find some travel dates should simply be avoided around the holidays. This will allow you to avoid crowds which often equal substantial delays. You will also be able to get the same travel arrangements at a lower price just by carefully calculating the best times to travel.
You may not think that Valentine’s Day is a top travel holiday but it is. It is very important for people to be able to spend this holiday together. Since Presidents Day is very close to Valentine’s Day many people are able to take a long weekend. Avoid traveling during this Monday holiday and you will save money. Instead fly out in the next few days and then stay for a couple of days after Valentine’s Day instead of before.
Spring break takes place for about three weeks in March depending on which schools people are attending. If you plan to travel for spring break you need to plan it very carefully to maximize your time and to get good prices. Many colleges allow people to complete their final exams early. Try to do this and travel on a Wednesday or Thursday. Avoid peak days such as Friday and Saturday. You also want to come back on week days as they will be lower volume dates for travel.
Many people fly to see their parents for Mother’s Day and for Father’s Day. These are important holidays that take place on a Sunday in May and then on a Sunday in June. Traveling on the actual day will save you money over flying out on the Friday or Saturday before. This way you can arrive on their special day and hang out for several days. Your return trip should be for one of the weekdays following the holiday instead of on the weekend.
Thanksgiving is a common holiday that people travel for. Since it always falls on a Thursday, most people get an extended weekend so they can go visit for a few days or take a vacation. The peak of this vacation for travel takes place on the day before Thanksgiving. However, if you are willing to travel on Thanksgiving Day you can avoid the crowds. You will also find you save up to 50% of the price of getting there just by waiting less than 24 hours.
Most people return from their Thanksgiving vacation on the Sunday following the holiday. Try to avoid this day as well and return on the following Monday. Most employers want some people to be in the office on the Wednesday before so offer to do it in exchange for having the following Monday off.
Christmas is another peak holiday travel occasion, and you will find the fares get much higher the closer it gets to the 25th of December. Try to travel before the 19th in order to take advantage of the best possible fares. If you won’t be able to stay through New Year’s that choose a day in the middle of the week after Christmas. These are often slower days than the weekends and you will get better prices.
Avoid travel on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day as they are two of the most popular travel dates of the year. Fares are often double what they normally would be so you will save yourself plenty of money and delays if you work around them when you travel for the holidays.