Avoid Major Holidays
Holidays are by far the most popular time to travel. In order to truly spend less on travel, try to travel in the off season. Flights can be up to 60 percent off depending on the season, and you will still get the experience of a new place. Try to travel in the off season, meaning the winter – where it can be as low as a $400 USD to go from Los Angeles to Paris!
Clear Your Search History
Travel sites track your search history. If you are constantly tracking a flight, the price of your flight WILL increase. I recommend clearing your search history in order to get the best price every time. You can even use a guest account on your computer, if you are being extra cautionary. You never know how much information you give out, even when clearing the browser!
Check Flights in the Middle of the Week
This is an industry hack. Flights are usually cheaper bought in the middle of the week than during the weekend. This idea goes off the slide before, that travel sites are basically tracking your every move in order to maximize profit. And most people are searching during the weekend, so save your searching during lunch breaks to save some bucks.
Go Beyond Google
Google Flights is integrated into your search. So the typical person will go ahead take that as the best avenue for all flights. But did you know certain airlines are excluded from that search? Make sure to check airline websites instead of relying on Google. And for bonus efforts, make sure to stay on trend with sites that are selling last minute deals or give out connecting flights. I always suggest checking Skiplagged.com for using connecting flights, and getting off there instead of the final destination for serious savings.
Stay with Friends, Family, or a Stranger
Instead of wasting money on a hotel, use your network to save money. Ask your friends or family to save with them when traveling where they live, or even ask if they know someone in the area. If you are really adventurous, there are sites that will hook you up with a hospitable stranger. Try couchsufer.com!
Stay in a Hostel
Hostels can be a quaint and unique experience. Hotels are usually uniform, and can lack personality and are often owned by franchises. Staying at a hostel can give you a more authentic feel of the city you are staying, and can introduce you to fellow travelers. Hostels are notably cheaper than most hotels, and at times can include breakfast. So you can save money and make new friends!
Pack Your Breakfasts
If you are like me, breakfast is very easy. I usually can run out of the house with a banana and peanut butter and be okay until lunch. Cereal bars are a cheap and easy alternative to a quick breakfast, and will give you much more time to explore the city you are in. You can also grab a quick sandwich with hearty eggs and meat that’ll give you energy throughout your day. I recommend packing enough to keep you satisfied through the trip, and as an emergency snack throughout flights. I recommend the variety pack in order to keep things fresh and new with your tastebuds.
There are an unbelievable number of hotel booking websites. But it is a lesser known fact that calling the hotel directly can give you the best deal. Instead of spending countless hours searching for the best deal, and being subjected to price hikes from clicks, call the hotel directly. The hotel booking agent can probably get you the best deal, as they will be saving money on the payout from the booking site.
Try a Travel Agent
Using a travel agent has a very 1990s feel to it. With all the available information put out on websites these days, travel agents are usually an afterthought. But calling the right one with good connections can surprise you, as agents are given deals and discounts unavailable to regular people. The agents are usually quick to give you prices, so just giving them a call can never hurt.
Go with Friends
Traveling with friends can save you a lot of money. You can split hotel costs, share meals, and even get discounted rates at certain museums. Traveling with more than one person can alleviate many costs, and will certainly be more comfortable than traveling alone or with one other person.