More Money Saving Tips on Summer Travel

I recently wrote an article for Mint.com called “How to Start Saving for Summer Vacation Now.” Here are a few more items worth knowing, to save some money on your summer vacation.

If you can..wait to book your air travel.

In my article, I mention to value of doing some research on the realistic price you’ll pay for flights, and that you should budget for that amount, considering any additional savings you find as “icing on the cake.” But, ARC recently conducted a study that identified six weeks out from your vacation as the time when flight prices might actually be lowest-5.8% lower than the average price, to be exact. “Many people have long thought that the further out from your flight that you buy an airline ticket, the less expensive it will be. Our data indicates that this isn’t necessarily true,” said Chuck Thackston, managing director of data and analytics at ARC. “Although low fares are available over the 120-day cycles in 2011 that we analyzed, the vast majority of tickets costing below the average fare were purchased about six weeks before the flight date. “We’re not advising people to purchase tickets only at this time during the cycle as there is no guarantee they will receive the lowest price of the year; it is just what the data indicates and we have seen this pattern over the last four years.”

Don’t Believe What Your Read About Hotels

I regularly consult TripAdvisor for information on hotels, because (I thought) the information was fairly accurate, given that it is coming from fellow travelers. Turns out, my assumption was a bit naive. According to Econsultancy.com, TripAdvisor has been accused of providing information from so called “travelers” that isn’t necessarily true. Obviously, the site is not to blame for people who posted reviews and posed as travelers, but at least in my mind, it does bring a little pause to how much I’ll use the site going forward. The moral of the story? There is still a place in this world for travel agents, especially if you’re traveling to a new destination, or have a specific “ambiance” in mind.