Travel

Save Money on Travel

  • Airfare-
    • Book airfare 6 weeks or 3 weeks out especially going to Europe
    • Fare alert and bidding – kayak.com * bing.com/travel * booking.com * hotwire.com * priceline.com * cheapoair.com * cheaptickets.com * orbitz.com * travelocity.com * biddingtraveler.com
    • Especially when traveling internationally, check on prices for airfare on expedia.com or other site, when you see a fare you like, go direct on the international airline site and airfare may be a few dollars less on their site. You can also change the search to do it in the country’s denomination to see if it is less in dollars or country’s currency.
    • Check different cities that fly to where you want to go. In looking for a flight out of Puerto Vallarta on expdia to Hermosillo Mexico, the cost was $291.02 USD. From Mazatlan it was $87.77 but the flight from Puerto Vallarta to Mazatlan made it more expensive. From Guadalajara to Hermosillo it was $56.72 and a flight from Puerto Vallarta to Guadalajara was $85.10, making the total $141.82 USD, saving $149 per ticket. You sometimes will need to stay the night in the city because the schedules don’t align but nice hotels in Guadalajara when booked in advance can run less than $40. You can also take a bus if you are more concerned with saving than comfort and arriving soon to your next destination. A bus from Puerto Vallarta to Guadalajara would run about $30 USD and takes 4 to 5 hours, making your total about $87 USD. Want to save a little more, expedia showed the flight was with Volaris air, I went to volaris.com and it was $48.23 on their site. That makes it $78.23 USD if you take a bus and use the company’s website. This method works on most trips. Here are some ways to search for this.
      • Go to a map, google is a good one, of the destination you are flying to. See what other cities are nearby and search flights for those cities. Flying from Tahiti French Polynesia to Boise Idaho was going to be over $1500. I started zooming in and out of the map, trying New Zealand, Australia. I noticed flying to Honolulu and then Boise was going to save me a couple hundred dollars. Then I noticed Cooks Island and was able to get it to under $1100.
      • You can also see where airlines have layovers and try combination flights with those cities.
      • Sometimes it is less expensive to fly say from Boise to Las Vegas with a layover in Phoenix then it is to fly from Boise to Phoenix. If you are not checking in luggage, you can just get off in Phoenix. Don’t do this if you book a round trip ticket because as soon as you miss a flight, the return tickets are cancelled.
    • I have used name your own price airfare tickets and saved a lot, but you don’t know what time you will arrive. Be prepared for the worse if you do this and leave a day before you expect to be somewhere. Once I messed up and I immediately called priceline telling them I knew it was my mistake and I just did not read the fine print realizing it would get me there too late. I asked if I could at least keep my first flights and pay for booking a different flight for the last leg of my destination flight. I found out that would completely cancel my return flight which was a flight. The nice gentleman on the phone said there was nothing he could do. But then he said, wait did you just book it, ok because you were so quick at calling me, I actually can still cancel it for you at no cost. You can now try again to bid on the flight but be careful, now that you know the rules. Calling priceline should not have worked as they have a no cancellation policy on name your own price deals. I share this as a last resort just in case you could get lucky as I did if you completely screw up your reservation.
  • Things to do and Dining
    • Use Living Social or Groupon for US destinations. Find if there is a groupon for the country you are traveling to. I did a google search for groupon Mexico, found it and put in the city I was going to. I then found attraction discounts as well as dining discounts.
  • Hotel
    • I have found most of the time hotels will be less expensive on expedia.com or other internet sites than calling a hotel directly.
    • Book hotels well in advance to get the best rates.
    • For 4 or more star hotels, I have had great luck when booking on priceline name your own price.
    • I more than once booked a hotel on expedia knowing it was cheaper somewhere else. I contacted expedia’s best price guarantee and got the difference back plus a $50 voucher for future use on expedia. It used to work with even a penny difference, not sure what their current policy requires.
  • Sign up for offers
    • I have an expedia account which gives points everytime you book with them. I also have the expedia credit card that gives me 3% back when paying on Expedia.
    • I have the Norwegian credit card that gives me 3% any time I use the card to pay for a cruise through Norwegian and for any on board expenses. I don’t use this card much but since I tend to go on a cruise once per year, I use it then.
    • There are lots of other point offers, if you tend to use a certain product a lot, sign up for the point system.
  • Other

 

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