The Travelnista herself is sharing tips, tricks, and hacks to fulfill cases of Wanderlust. We all have or had a fair share of Wanderlust! Getting to your destination shouldn't be stressful, expensive, or complicated. As a stylish lady who loves to travel, she'll share ideas that will have you prepared for your next travel experience.
1. Begin your travel search early!
Airlines generally release tickets 11 months in advance. Once you decide the destination start searching and continue to check periodically.
Be mindful that the price you see is live. It can fluctuate at any given moment. Airlines want to give you the best prices available, but there are big factors that decide how much your ticket will cost.
2. Private Browsing is a KEY factor!
"Private browsing, privacy mode, or incognito mode is a privacy feature in some web browsers to disable browsing history and the web cache. This allows a person to browse the Web without storing local data that could be retrieved at a later date." - Wikipedia
Open an incognito browsing window for private browsing to view cheaper flights and hotel rates online. All travel sites and airlines can record your visits by installing cookies on your browser, which can cause the prices to increase because of multiple searches.
Credit: Google Chrome
If your browser is not equipped for the incognito browsing feature before you book a flight online, clear your history, cache, and cookies. This may help you get a cheaper fare since some airlines track your searches and increase prices when they perceive a flight is in demand.
3. Hidden-City Ticketing
This trick helps a traveler see flights that the airlines do not want you to see. Trust the Travelnista when she says it is 100% legitimate even though a lot of people don't know about it.
The traveler gets off at the layover rather than the final destination. For example, a flight from Atlanta, GA to Dallas, TX might be $250.00, but a similar flight from Atlanta, GA to Seattle, WA with a layover in Orlando might be $130.00. If you're going to Orlando, FL Skipplagged.com would show you both flights and if you choose the cheapest option, you get off the plane at the layover (Orlando, FL) rather than going to the final destination (Seattle, WA.)
For my visionary learning readers please see example below:
WARNING: This hack doesn't allow you to check your luggage with the airline. If you do check your luggage it will end up at the final destination versus the destination you wanted to go. Highly suggested for quick and last-minute trips. Carry-ons are the only option!
4. When is a good time to book exactly?
Travel plans can become expensive quickly. If you know the best time to buy, then you'll have no issues.
According to FareCompare.com please see below when you can catch a valuable deal.
Best time to buy: Tuesdays at 3:00 P.M EST or other days at 5:00 AM EST.
Cheapest days to fly: Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays.
Most expensive days to fly: Fridays and Sundays.
5. Set-up price alert notifications
Price alerts are convenient and no cost. Let's face it, a busy schedule will not allow time to check sites consistently. This price tracker will setup for the route you choose.
When the price changes, you'll get notified via an email alert. The email will display if the price went up or down. After a few days of receiving alerts, you can make your decision. Check out Skyscanner.com to set up your flight alerts.
You can unsubscribe once you book at the best price alert.
6. Book now, pay later, and deposits!
Third-party travel booking companies offer "Book now, pay later" options. Reserve your vacation without any money down or a small deposit may be required at the time of booking depending on how far in advance a traveler reserves.
Expedia.com and Booking.com are two creditable third-party websites that offer the book now, pay later - no prepayment option. Plan a trip, select your room, enter your details. A banner would show "No payment needed today, You'll pay when you stay."
If this hack is done approximately, 4-5 months in advance it gives a long period to save your money for travel.
Bookit.com and CheapCaribbean.com are two creditable third-party websites that offer deposit or installment options.
PAY DELAY PROGRAM WITH BOOKIT
"PayDelay is BookIt.com's own payment program service." Some options show a $1.00 deposit required to hold the reservation or 4 equal payments prior to your check-in date.
At the time of booking, select PayDelay which is found under the Payment Methods section.
SPLIT DEPOSIT PAYMENT PROGRAM WITH CHEAPCARIBBEAN
Split Deposit Payment Program is CheapCaribbean.com's own payment program service. " With this program, you can make a deposit on your reservation at the time of booking, with your final payment due 21 days before your date of departure. A non-refundable deposit fee of $29 will be added to your reservation total and will be reflected on your invoice. All elements of the vacation package, including airfare, hotel, transfers, etc., are reserved for you until your final payment is made."
7. Join Frequent Flyer Miles Program
Jetblue Trueblue and Delta Airlines Sky Miles have the most rewarding frequent flyer programs.
Once you gain enough points, you can take advantage of benefits such as the following:
Complimentary upgrades and perks
Miles don't expire in some frequent flyer miles programs
Free checked baggage
Complimentary in-flight Wi-Fi
Partnerships airlines have with various travel-related companies including car rentals, hotels, resorts, and other retail stores.
8. Book Vacation Rentals
ave more with Airbnb.com vacation rentals. Airbnb properties offer more space, flexibility with check-in/out times, and are less pricey.
In the same areas of Atlanta, GA, dates, and amount of guests the Airbnb search beat the Expedia prices.
Over $100.00 in savings by booking a vacation rental on Airbnb.com!
9. Up to 18,360 Travel Offers Available!
"It's a travel deal bonanza! No better time to take advantage of these savings than now. Getaway and fly to a tropical locale where you can relax and be pampered. Whether you're about to lose your planning summer vacation, want to get away for the weekend or need some last-minute hotel and flight deals, we've got you covered. So get ready to pack your bags; our travel deals are sure to make your heart take flight."
- on RetailMeNot retailmenot.com/coupons/travel.
Check out the Hotel Savings, Car Rentals, Flights, and much more.
"Simply choose the coupon code you like best, and you'll be set up to save on a glorious getaway."
10. Apply for A Credit Card, Gain Points Towards Travel
Opening up a travel credit card for travel rewards might be worth it to you if you love to travel, wish to travel more often and to earn rewards on your everyday expenses.
Having trouble deciding on a travel credit card? Best Source: Nerdwallet.com for the "Best Travel Credit Cards"
11. Utilize the Filters in Your Travel Search
The Travelnista believes this hack is the most effective during your travel search.
Utilize the "Sort By" bar to sort from the following:
"Sort By: Price" is highly recommended especially to narrow down your choices when looking for budget-friendly places of stay.
Filter properties by Property Class, Guest rating, Amenities. It's essential that your search prioritizes results in a useful way that is important or related to your preference.
Expedia.com's user-friendly interface lets you search for flights to your destination without any hassle.
The site displays all the results of your search on one page for you to compare and make a proper decision. You can even refine your search by using special filters so you see only the relevant results. These filters can be set for the following:
Stops during your flight such as: non-stop or connecting
Airlines (Top pick: Delta and Jetblue)
Departure and arrival time slots
With these options, Expedia.com's ensuring you never have to visit a travel agent. Conduct your own searches.
12. Flexible Travel Dates = SAVINGS
Kayak.com has a new flexible dates tool. If you're flexible about deciding where you want to go, and when you like to go you can search using this tool.
Explore within the United States and International.
The flexibility in travel will and can result in better deals.
To learn how to utilize the tool watch the following video:
13. Snag the best Travel Deals on Black Friday/Cyber Monday & Travel Deal Tuesday
Black Friday and Cyber Monday are more than electronics, apparel, and home-related merchandise. Travel is a HUGE part of it. Slashed deals are always available.
14. Travelnista's Favorite Trick: "POLITELY COMPLAINING"
I'm sure nobody enjoys being that person who complains. However; this trick can score many perks along with it. Please ensure that you get what you paid for!
Flights delayed or canceled? - Complain to the direct airline's Customer Service department upon completion of the trip. You'll receive an email requesting feedback about your trip anyway. This is your chance. If it's really a miserable trip you can be awarded not only full/partial refund, airline miles, points to flights, or flight credit.
Hotel room not available at check-in time or Housekeeping didn't do a good job? Report to the front desk upon check-out. You'll be surprised by what you'll receive. From a dinner credit to room upgrade to $50-100 off of your next stay.
Entree or cocktail during your stay not up to par? Request to speak to a manager before completing the payment of the check presented. Be honest about your experience. Don't be a pushover, it comes naturally just stating the obvious about the service. The check will possibly be handled by management, an item or two could be removed or complimentary shots/cocktails on the house.