How to save money on your travel bookings
Traveling is one of everybody’s biggest desires. We love to go on holidays, short weekend trips or long travels to explore new countries, experience different traditions and learn about other cultures. Unfortunately traveling is expensive and sometimes simply out of reach. Here are few tricks we have learned and use to save money on all our travel bookings.
Its the first obvious thing: the flights are really expensive, specially the main legs to exotic, far destinations. So to save money on your flights means you can travel for cheaper… or longer ?
1. Use SkyScanner to compare the prices of the tickets
We like skyscanner.com because its easy to use and has many cool options. Here you can quickly compare prices of flights with many different companies.
2. Be flexible on your departure dates
The best thing about skyscanner.com is the easy option to choose the departure date as a specific date or a view over a whole month. When opening the ‘Depart’ and ‘Return’ tab, instead of picking the specific date, choose ‘Whole month’.
A whole month view will open with prices for each day. When choosing different dates, the prices will adjust, so mix and max the dates until you find the best option.
You can save a lot of money by just moving your departure or return by a day or two.
3. Always use incognito mode when buying your flight tickets.
The cookies and information cached (saved) by your browser allows the website to receive the info that you have been looking for this flights already. In turn, this means that it might give you higher prices.
Use ⌘Cmd + Shift + N to open a new window in incognito mode, and theoretically avoid that issue.
4. Try to book in advance
It has been calculated that on a Tuesday evening, 6 weeks before the flight the prices are the lowest. Less people will be booking flights on those days. Try to use this tip to save money on your bookings.
5. Look for great deals on Fly 4 Free
This website regroups the best deals on flights and hotels. Travel and save money super easily. Just need to sign up for their newsletter not to miss a chance to buy flights at great prices. We purchased our return flights Paris-Havana only for 230 EUR thanks to fly4free.com!
You will have to be quick though. Many times, incredible offers showed up on the website. But after hesitating for too long, the flights were gone. Like one around the world in 3 weeks from Hungary to South Korea, Japan, New Zealand, through French Polynesia and Chile and back to Paris for 1073€ anyone? ?
5. Apply for frequent traveler cards
We collect miles with Miles&More, OneWorld and SkyMiles.
We were able to purchase, only with Martyna’s miles, 2 round tickets NYC-Cancun last December. And even a few tickets between Warsaw-Milan and Warsaw-Paris thanks to SkyMiles and Miles&More. It takes time to cumulate the miles, but it costs you absolutely nothing in return and after few years you can fly for free for your holidays!
Try to stick with one company
Sticking to one specific company also gives you great advantages- think free upgrades and extras luggage allowance for example. We always try to fly with Qatar Airways on our flights to Asia and we have been upgraded already twice. We are now are Silver Card members thanks to the points we collected with our flights. It means that we have fast tracks and business counter access on all OneWorld flights. On top of that each time we fly with Qatar we get extra 10 kg of luggage and access to business class lounge everywhere. Let me tell you that being able to shower in a beautiful, comfortable bathroom half way on a 20 hours journey is a great feeling 😉
Each company has different privileges for their frequent traveler card holders: I remember applying for a card from Hawaiian Airways (online to get it for free) when flying to Kauai and between the islands, as the members could check in the luggage for free and the rest of passengers had to pay 50 USD to check in the bag for each flight.
Better Hotel Deals
Having an account on both of these websites and sticking to booking via them gives you advantages and will make you save money for your travel accommodations.
On booking.com we have reached Genius Level 2 member, which means that we have 15% discount on all our hotel bookings. Thats 15 EUR on each 100 EUR stay! Level 1 receives 10% discount which is a great bargain too. It also gives you access to special offers that are limited per day and per hotel when the lower price is available only to you. In selected hotels we also get a complimentary breakfast when the room comes without it.
You can use our discount of 15 EUR for your next stay, if you book via this link right here.
↬ Note : By the way guys, any time you see a booking.com link on our website, it is linked to us. That means that if you book a hotel or an accommodation, we get a few bucks out of it! So if you like our content and you think it helped you plan your next voyage, you can directly support us by just clicking and booking any stay via our link! ?❤️?
Hotels.com also offers a great deal. You can get 1 night free for every 10 nights booked through them. The price of the night you get offered is an average of the 10 nights you have purchased. The cumulated nights never expire so you take even a year to complete the 10 nights stay- and get one more night for free. You can even cumulate your free nights before using them.
3. Check the official website of the hotel
Once you find the hotel you like, make sure to check also their official website. Hotels often do seasonal offers when they give nice discounts for stays during a certain period. We booked our stay at Hip Hotel in Tulum directly on their website, because we found a special offer for 30% discount for our dates! We wouldn’t be able to afford this hotel otherwise.
4. Directly Contact Hotels
Always send an email to the hotel management (not just a message while booking), before your arrival. If you have special wishes for your stay, or are celebrating an occasion make sure to mention it. On all our stays we always ask for a room on top floor with big bed and a nice view. We have been multiple times upgraded to room that fits this requirements, only because we have asked for it. Hotels will do their best to meet the guests expectations. But they wont do it if they don’t know that you have some requests. If you want something, no harm in asking for it (nicely of course!). If you are celebrating an engagement or a birthday, make sure to say it before head. There is a great chance that a nice bottle of wine, sweets and card with best wishes from hotel management will be waiting for you in the room.
Better Car Rental Value
Renting a car can be very expensive, specially in Europe. But there is a way to save money on those bookings as well!
Don’t book directly on the car rental websites, as the prices are way higher.
We book our car rentals on expedia.com and found that their prices are really competitive comparing to other websites.
The same car for 3 days of rental in Paris, directly on the company’s website costs 200 EUR, while on expedia.com it is only 50 EUR. The difference is huge. The first time we made a booking like this, we emailed the company directly, because we were afraid it was a mistake. Turned out it wasn’t and we payed only 16,5 EUR per day for renting a car in Paris. Good way to save lots of money for your travel budget.
Oh, you say that’s not enough, huh?
Fine! We’ll let you in on the big one.
We also discovered that rental prices for USA website are even much lower, than if you are logged in from Europe. To be honest, we don’t know precisely how it works, but it works! When we are logged in from US account the prices for the same car rentals are much lower than if we were logged in from France for example. We suggest you always use expedia.com not expedia.fr or other European domains.
Dealing with the insurance
Also, you are required to purchase the insurance with the car, that can be more expensive than the car rental itself. We always opt for the minimum insurance, as our credit card (VISA) covers the car rental accidents as well. Contact your credit card company and ask if they do the same: it’s a great save of money. If you choose the minimum coverage from the rental company you have to be prepared to have even few hundred Euros withheld from your bank account as a guarantee. Those money will be released as soon as you return the car in the same conditions as you have rented it (it will take few days to get them back on your account).
↬ Now that you know how to get the best possible deals for your trips, how about being eco friendly while traveling?