Vacations are the perfect way to relax, unwind, and recuperate. Unfortunately, a lot of Americans rarely get the opportunity to enjoy a vacation due to the perceived expense. However, you may be surprised to hear that it’s possible to find affordable vacation deals that won’t break the bank — as long as you know where to look!
With a little bit of research and diligence, you can enjoy a well-earned vacation that leaves you feeling refreshed and renewed, without spending a small fortune. Here’s a guide to the best deals and vacation websites that can help you save hundreds of dollars flights, hotels, and entertainment.
Airfare is often the most expensive part of a vacation, especially if you’re vacationing as a family; however, there are ways to save money, such as flying with budget-friendly airlines like Southwest, Frontier, and Spirit. You can also search for third-party sites to find deals and discounted flights from major airlines, such as The Flight Deal, Secret Flying, and Expedia.
The more flexible you can be, the better chance you have of snagging a discount flight. For example, red eye flights during out of season are much cheaper than peak season flights. You should also sign up to discount airline sights and setting up flight alerts. Airlines such as Frontier offer frequent deals via email for customers who sign up for their newsletter.
Hotel rates typically operate on an occupancy basis, the more in demand the date is, the higher the cost of a room. This also means that hotels will sell rooms at discounted rates if their occupancy falls below a certain threshold — because selling a discounted room is better than selling no room at all.
If you’re looking to bag a cheap hotel deal, you should scour third party websites, such as Booking.com, Agobo, and Expedia. Third-party websites often offer discounted hotel rooms for a more affordable rate than the hotel itself.
When finding a cheap hotel room, you may be surprised to hear that you could be entitled to a discounted room rate simply for being a AAA or AARP member. Similarly, hotels often reward frequent guests with reward points, so be sure to sign up to reward programs for hotel chains you like — it could score you a deep discount in the future.
If you love the idea of sailing the ocean surrounded by good food, drinks, and entertainment, a cruise could be the perfect vacation for you. Cruise ships frequently offer deep discounts on cabins — as long as you can be flexible with your dates and can book your trip last minute.
Similar to a hotel, cruise ships discount their rooms based on occupancy. If it’s not peak season and the ship has plenty of free cabins, they’ll typically reduce their rate in order to sell rooms before they leave the port. To guarantee yourself the best rate possible, you should try to book your trip just before it’s due to depart, and during the off-season of fall to winter.
If you’d like to find a cheap cruise deal, one of the easiest ways to start your search is online. You can either go directly to the cruise lines website or opt for a third party website. CruiseSheet.com is an example of a useful third-party cruise website that collects and compares the cheapest cruise deals and discounts on one site.
Your dream vacation doesn’t have to break the bank. In fact, the vacation you’ve always wanted to take is in reach — if you know where to look! Be sure to start your search online, by using third-party sites to compare and contrast rates for your chosen trip. With a little bit of research and some savvy searching, you could save yourself hundreds of dollars on the trip of a lifetime!