There may be no better way to eliminate holiday stress than by taking a vacation. If you feel like getting away from it all but never got a chance to book anything until right this minute, donâ€™t worryÂ â€“ last minute holiday travel doesnâ€™t have to be prohibitively expensive. Here are five secrets for getting out of Dodge between now and New Yearâ€™s without putting your finances in a dodgy situation.Â
- Check airfares early in the morning. The time of day that you actually sit down to book your flight can make a huge impact on the cost of your fare. Since most airlines update their inventory and prices overnight, checking airfares first thing in the morning can really pay off.
- Buy two one-way tickets. If all roundtrip flights to your destination cost an arm and a leg, consider purchasing two one-way tickets on multiple airlines. The total price may be substantially less than a roundtrip fare. If you use a travel site like Orbitz, enter two separate searches to and from your destination using the one-way option.
- Fly on off-peak travel days. Incorporating just one off-peak travel day into your airfare can significantly decrease the cost of flying â€“Â sometimes by as much as 50 percent. If you need to travel on a peak day to reach your destination, consider booking your return for New Yearâ€™s Eve or New Yearâ€™s Day (or another date when most travelers would prefer not to fly).
- Comp-air-ison shop. Donâ€™t make the mistake of booking the first flight you stumble upon. You may be able to find a much cheaper fare elsewhere. Sites like SkyScanner offer deals on mainstream airlines as well as lesser-known carriers â€“Â many of which offer significantly reduced fares. To research and compare reward flight options, check out Expedia Rewards.
- Skip the airport. If a plane ticket is beyond your financial reach, consider a vacation spot thatâ€™s within driving range. Depending on where you live, a relaxing change of scenery may be as little as a two- or four-hour drive away. Donâ€™t feel like driving? Look into train and/or bus fares to the destination of your choice.
Donâ€™t let a lack of planning give you a holly jolly meltdown. With a little insider information and flexibility, you can still book an affordable getaway between now and the New Year.