Whether it’s a ski trip in the Rockies or a two-day journey to your in-laws in South Florida, it’s best to start saving now for that Thanksgiving trip.
From booking flights, to shipping gifts or even food, everything costs money; the further the journey, the heftier the price tag. The financial experts at Broussard Poché, LLP have a few tips that could make the cost of holiday travel more affordable.
- Be Flexible
Even a day or a week can make a difference. Look into booking tickets on an odd day like Tuesday or Monday. Try not to book flights on the Wednesday before or Sunday after Thanksgiving. Paying attention to the flexible days that many airlines offer can save time and money. This may seem a bit extreme, but some families choose to celebrate the weekend before the actual holidays to avoid the hassle and cost.
- Shop Around
Once you decide on dates and a destination, shop around for deals. Go to websites that do the legwork for you like, Priceline or Kayak. If you are not staying with family consider a local rental or Airbnb. Remember, don’t just book the first hotel you see, many times there are extra deals to be had. Look for online coupons and even package deals that might include discounts on flights and rental cars.
- Start Now
If you’re flying, make your plan and book seats as far in advance as possible. Airlines don’t usually offer last-minute sales in order to fill planes anymore. Demand is on the rise, especially during the holidays, so airlines can keep rates up and, in some cases, raise them as the holiday approaches.
- Ship luggage
Most airlines charge for checked bags and in some cases carry-on bags as well. If you are going for an extended stay you may want to ship your bags. Most ground shipping companies offer a few ways to price; do a little price comparison. You might save big by shipping those bags and gifts.
- No rental car
If you’re in an area with public transportation you will actually be able to get where you need for a couple hundred dollars less than renting a car for a week or two. Plus, if you are visiting family and friends you may be able to borrow their cars for a few trips here and there.
Being with loved ones during the holidays is important, but it’s also important not to overextend your bank account. Getting organized now will save you money in the long run. Safe travels!