Due to the tough financial times, it is possible you were going to forgo this year’s vacation or perhaps spend drastically less. This article is filed with useful tips you can use to save money while traveling.
Be respectful and patient towards security checkpoints and customs officials. In most cases, these exist for your safety. If not, being upset still won’t help you get through any faster. In fact, making a fuss at the security checkpoint is almost always a ticket to the express lane for the extra search.
If you know that you are going to have a long layover in a city, check what there is to do beforehand. A 3 hour layover in Washington D.C. can easily turn into a quick tour of the Washington Mall or a long sit in Minneapolis can become a quick shopping trip to the Mall of America!
Make your luggage bright and noticeable. Try to avoid carrying bags that are one matte color and blend in with all the other pieces of luggage in the airport. Having unusual-looking luggage will make your bag easier to spot and will discourage criminals from stealing it in a busy airport.
When traveling outside North America, it is best to bring your own alarm clock. Most hotel rooms in less-developed areas will not supply a clock, and without one, you run the risk of missing the connection to your next destination. Sometimes these can be useful in train or bus stations as well.
When traveling to a new city, try your best to look as if you belong there: Never let anyone see that you are lost. Checking your map in the middle of the sidewalk is a sure-fire giveaway, as is asking for directions. Remember, new arrivals are good targets for pickpockets and muggers.
When planning a major trip, you should always purchase travel insurance. This protects you against loss on big ticket items like international flights, as well as helping you recover the costs of lost baggage or other emergency expenses. Travel insurance covers you if you have to cancel your trip or if your trip has to be ended early.
If you have many questions for a hotel, call them at night. Most major hotels keep their front desk staffed 24 hours a day. If you have questions about booking your room or special needs you want to discuss, calling late at night ensures that you are less likely to be interrupted for the attendant to tend to a guest.
If you are interested in traveling comfortably on your vacation, don’t be afraid to upgrade your seat. Most airlines are combining traditional business class and coach seats by offering “premium economy” options. They have larger seats and better legroom, but they often do not cost as much. You can also try to upgrade your seat just before boarding, but you won’t know about the availability of the upgrades if you check in to your flight online.
Eliminate the middle man when purchasing travel tickets. When you book direct with an airline or train line, 90% of the time you will get a better deal than if you use a booking agency. Many booking agencies are now reducing their fees, but if you have time to book direct, nine times out of ten you will save money.
If you are preparing to travel and have questions about the hotel you are going to stay at, try calling late at night. The hotel is typically not busy around midnight, which means that you will receive the undivided attention of the employee. The worker is also more likely to give you advice about attractions and restaurants around the city.
When traveling, always know the number of doors between your hotel room and the exit. If there is a fire, you will have to quickly move to the stairwell. If the fire produces a lot of smoke, you may not be able to see, so feeling the doors and counting until you reach the right one may be your only option.
Set up an account on a “cloud” site and upload scans of important documentation that you may need on your trip. Loss and theft occur quite often during travel in-country as well as abroad. By having documentation stored in a “cloud” location you can easily access them from anywhere you have Internet access.
Put your smart phone to work for you when you travel. Email your itinerary to yourself so you can quickly access it from your phone, from anywhere. Use your phone for photos, text messaging home, checking weather forecasts, keeping track of the time zone and so many more things that will make your travels simpler.
As was discussed in this article, due to the poor economy you might be wanting to put off going on vacation this year. Use the suggestions in this article and find your way to an affordable vacation.