Saving enough money for a great holiday is a big financial goal for many people. And any money you save in the booking phase gives you extra for spending.
Here are a few ways you can cut the costs of your travel and accommodation, so you have more space in the budget for fun while you’re there.
According to Stuff.co.nz, you can save money by booking well in advance for your airfares.
The early-bird fares offered by airlines almost a year in advance tend to be competitive – and there’s no guarantee that there’ll be a special deal rolled out closer to when you want to fly. Get organised and reap the rewards. Also, you may find that booking for weird times of the day, or mid-week, can give you the best options.
Websites like Cheapflights, Webjet, FareFinder and Skyscanner allow you to compare offers and look for better deals on slightly different dates depending on how flexible you are.
A house swap can be another great way to cut your accommodation costs, and get a taste of a new area with all the comforts of home.
There are formal sites that make this happen between strangers (usually for a fee), but you can also organise an informal one with a friend by agreeing to stay at each other’s houses for a couple of weeks.
Sometimes, it’s worth trying to negotiate for a better rate. You can do it with hotels, tour providers, and the activities you’re booking. For example, you may be able to get a discount if you book more than one activity with the same provider.
If you are using Airbnb, you can also message the host and ask them to offer you a deal. The platform allows them to send a one-time “special offer” if they’re short of bookings during the time you’re looking for. But if they ask you to pay outside of Airbnb, it’s better to walk away as guest protections disappear. They might be honest, but why risk it?
Try to make the most of what you spend on the places you stay. It’s a good idea to check out deals that include meals and look for accommodation where you can cook a bit in your room, or at least have breakfast there before you go. This may save you significant amounts on the cost of eating out.
You may feel wealthier if you go to a place that has a weaker exchange rate compared to ours. The NZ dollar is likely to stretch further in parts of southeast Asia, for example, than in London.
Data roaming isn’t as expensive as it used to be, but the cost of using your mobile overseas can still add a lot to your holiday. If you’re going to be in one area for a while, consider buying a SIM card from a provider there so you can use your phone like a local.
If you have travel insurance, it probably covers your rental car excess. If so, better not to add on the hundreds of dollars that a rental car company might try to convince you to fork out to reduce the possible excess on its in-house insurance policies.
If you’re only needing transport one-way, you may be able to get a free car or motorhome rental from a company that needs to transfer a vehicle to a new location. Check out sites such as transfercar.co.nz to see if you can make it work.
Sites that offer limited-time deals on entertainment and activities can be a great way to get some cut-price fun into your holiday…
Enjoy your time off – you earned it! We look forward to hearing from you in the new year.
Disclaimer: Please note that the content provided in this article is intended as an overview and as general information only. While care is taken to ensure accuracy and reliability, the information provided is subject to continuous change and may not reflect current development or address your situation. Before making any decisions based on the information provided in this article, please use your discretion and seek independent guidance.