5 Easy Ways to Make a Winter Getaway More Affordable
If you're ready to escape the post-holiday routine, a late winter getaway could be just the ticket for enjoying the rest of the season. The few months before spring break are some of the best times of the year to find deals on hotels and flights — so now could be the perfect time to take that much-needed vacation. These five tips can help make your winter getaway more affordable:
1: Choose an Off-Season Destination
Many people want to jet off to warmer locales during the winter months, driving up the cost of travel because of higher demand. However, there are a few attractive destinations around the globe that are immune to the price surge of winter vacation packages.
Winter is the low season for major East Coast and Midwest destinations, including Chicago and Boston, as well as Toronto, according to Travel + Leisure. You can enjoy the wealth of indoor activities and cultural attractions in these cities to make the most of your winter getaway — and stay on budget.
2: Book at the Right Time
According to the 2018 Annual Airfare Study by CheapAir.com, the best time to buy your airline ticket during the winter season is at least 62 days in advance. If you're planning an early spring vacation, you'll need to buy your ticket 90 days in advance. This will give you the best options on flights and the lowest prices. Booking too close to your travel date could leave you competing for the best flight schedules and seats while also paying a premium for your ticket.
3: Reserve Rooms at a Mystery Hotel
Many third-party travel websites present mystery deals and offers at certain locations, including popular travel destinations, during the winter months. You can choose to stay at four-star and even five-star properties in your preferred city at a discounted rate but won't know the identify of the hotel until you book.
If you're willing to take a chance, this can help you save a significant amount of money on accommodations.
4: Tap Into Credit Card Rewards
If you have a credit card that offers travel rewards, such as the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard®, consider using any accumulated rewards to cover some or all of the costs of your winter vacation. You can use frequent flier miles you've earned or rewards points toward your travel booking.
This can reduce your out-of-pocket costs for the trip, making it that much easier to stay within your travel budget.
5: Be Flexible with Travel Dates
If you're booking your flight and hotel together, be flexible with your dates to get the best rates. Flying in and out on a weekday instead of a weekend usually yields lower rates on your flight. If you can check in on Thursday and/or stay until Monday, you can save even more on your hotel — according to Kayak's Global Hotel Study, checking in on a Friday and checking out on a Sunday is your most expensive option.
An easy way to plan ahead is to use travel booking sites that let you see the price differences between different dates. Having some flexibility could help you lock down the best rate in any given week.
You don't have to spend a fortune to enjoy a winter vacation this year. Use some of these travel booking tips and cost-cutting strategies to enjoy a winter getaway on any budget.
All content provided in this blog is supplied by Sabah Karimi and is for informational purposes only. Barclays makes no representations as to the accuracy or completeness of any information contained in the blog or found by following any link within this blog.
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