Traveling is one of the greatest joys in life. Whether it’s across the country or around the world, getting away from home to see new places and experience different cultures is an experience everyone should have at least once.
Planning a trip this year can be difficult. And that difficulty gets even more complicated when you factor in the wallet-emptying price of airfare, hotel stays, food, the pandemic protocols, and other necessities. To help make planning easier, here are five money-saving tips that will help you plan your future travels for affordable prices.
USE GOOGLE FLIGHTS’ PRICE ALERTS.
When planning a trip on a budget, it’s important to keep track of the prices of the destinations that interest you most. Google Flights allows users to set price alerts to be notified via email when the best deals on their chosen destination are available.
Let’s say you want to go to Paris in 2022 but don’t want to pay more than $700 for the two-way airfare of your trip. Google Flights’ price alerts will help. Set an alert at that maximum price, and when prices drop below that threshold, you’ll receive an email telling you about the deal.
DON’T BE AFRAID TO TRAVEL OFF-PEAK.
Most travelers assume that the cheapest time to travel is during the weekdays when most people work. While this may be true for airfare in some cases, it’s not always the case in general.
Many destinations experience traffic jams in peak seasons, which means more waiting in lines and longer commutes. And while you can’t control these things when booking your trip, there are still ways to ensure you’re getting the best time possible.
Choosing flights during off-peak hours or visiting cities outside of peak seasons will help reduce your expenses considerably. For example, Paris experiences its lowest prices in the winter months when fewer tourists are drawn by outdoor attractions like skating along the Seine River.
DON’T PAY EARLY IF YOU DON’T HAVE TO.
Though 2022 is a time for a lot of travel promotions, such as flexible schedules and the like, many still commit a mistake in paying for the trip early. Many people seem to think that if they pay now, they’ll get a better deal or special promotion. However, with COVID-19 still around, there are still high chances of changes in plans or rebooking. Then, you’ll waste what you spend when there are strict non-cancellation policies in the hotels and car rentals you booked.
When planning a trip this year, consider “pay later” and “free cancellation” options. It is also good to thoroughly read through policies before finalizing your booking.
USE SOCIAL MEDIA.
Whether domestic or international, most destinations have Facebook groups dedicated solely to providing information about trips for those who live nearby or plan to visit.
These groups are a great place to meet other people who also love traveling, talk about where you’ve been, what to see and do when you get there. But, more importantly, these people may be able to let you know about any good deals and changes in travel protocols they’ve heard of for 2022’s travel season.
PURCHASE TRAVEL INSURANCE AND BE AWARE OF YOUR PASSENGER RIGHTS.
Even when you’re not spending much money on your trip, expenses can always crop up unexpectedly. Good insurance plans will give you coverage in the event of changes to your travel plans (the biggest culprit is COVID-19), emergencies like medical issues, and damage or loss of items in transit.
You’ll find it’s much cheaper to buy insurance in advance rather than attempting to purchase it while overseas in an emergency. Insurance policies are available almost everywhere, so look out for good deals that you can buy on reliable websites before your travels.
It is also helpful if you are aware of your passenger rights. Being familiar with these standards before traveling will save you much trouble and money should an issue arise during your travels, for example, entitlement to a flight delay compensation in case your flight is delayed, or worse, canceled. Knowing these rights will also make it easier to deal with representatives and reduce the risk of being scammed.
As you can see, there are many ways for people to plan their trips affordably. Using the advice listed above will help you not only save money on travel but also enjoy more time exploring your favorite destinations hassle-free. Also, remember to be safe, be on the lookout, and follow all current safety protocols when planning your 2022 trips!