Prices are up, up, and away for both airline tickets and gas, with the latter at an all-time seasonal high. On top of that, travel expenses like rental cars and hotel rooms are up 12% and 46% respectively from pre-pandemic levels.
You probably already know why this is the case — supply chains, energy crises, and inflation comprise the simple explanation. So without further ado, let’s just dive into ways that you can save this holiday season.
Ways to Save
One of the biggest ways to save on travel is to reduce the cost of your flights. If you’re traveling with family, finding cheaper tickets can save you hundreds of dollars, if not thousands, in one fell swoop.
To do so, it helps if your travel dates are flexible. To identify the cheapest travel dates, check out holiday outlook guides, like this one from the travel app Hopper.
Additionally, when searching for flights, check the websites of different airlines, rather than relying on a flight aggregator. Low-cost carriers like Southwest (LUV), Allegiant Air (ALGT), Spirit (SAVE), and Frontier (ULCC) don’t always show up on aggregators like Kayak (BKNG) or Google Flights (GOOGL).
Also, toggling between one-way and roundtrip tickets is another way to uncover cheap flights that might be hidden.
If you plan on driving to your destination, apps such as GasBuddy will direct you to the cheapest gas near you. If you’re road-tripping, driving a little out of your way might help you save a lot of money.
Leverage Your Credit Card
Wracking up credit card debt on travel is rarely a good idea. However, credit cards can be powerful travel tools if leveraged correctly.
First, be sure to leverage your credit card’s rewards program to save on travel expenses. If it makes sense for you, you could also look at signing up for a new card if it offers a signup bonus. This is especially true for airline or hotel-specific cards. Many credit cards will even offer travel insurance, which can protect your trip from emergencies.
This holiday season might be pricier than normal across the board — but for the travel headache, at least, treatments exist.
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