Travelling during the winter holidays can be a lot of fun, but also a bit stressful and expensive. No one wants to miss Christmas with their loved ones because they couldn't afford a flight or other travel arrangements. Fortunately, there are always deals for holiday travel and ways to make a trip less stressful. You just have to be prepared to plan ahead, do some research and shop around. Here are five tips to help ease your holiday travelling woes:
- Shop Around for Deals
Comparison shopping is an excellent way to find the best deals on travel accommodations. The comparison shopping process includes doing some research on the booking site of your choice. All you have to do is search using your travel criteria then compare the rates for flight, hotels/motels, rental cars and more. During the peak travel season, you'll want to check out as many options as possible to obtain the best deal possible. However, keep in mind that the lowest price doesn't mean the best deal. The use of search criteria like "search adjacent days or airports" may yield better travel times and lower fares.
- Avoid Travelling on Peak Dates
Travel will always be at its peak the day before a major holiday. It's a rule of thumb to avoid catching a flight on these days. Instead, you should fly on the actual holidays or many days before. Few people actually travel on Christmas day, so the travel rates on the day are much more affordable. In fact, many airlines actually offer cut-rate airfare deals on these holidays. You can also put in flexible travel dates in a search engine to find the date combinations that will give you the best deals for travelling during Christmas and New Year's.
- Look for Package Deals
Package deals that include air and hotel accommodations are the hottest during the holidays and peak travel times. These packages offer bundled pricing that is highly competitive and affordable. Oftentimes, purchasing a package is actually less expensive than purchasing a plane ticket, which means you won't have to stay with relatives if you don't want to, while you're visiting.
- Book a Flight That Is Early or Late in the Day
Airports are the least busy in the 'wee' morning hours and late at night. Delays are also less likely to happen during early morning or late night flights. These flights almost always leave on time. However, you'll need to arrive at the airport as early as possible, as check-in and other personnel-dependent steps take the longest during these hours. This is because airports aren't usually fully staffed early in the morning or late at night.
- Plan Flight Connections Carefully
Flights during the holidays are notorious for long layovers. However, there is a way for you to avoid this unpleasant occurrence. All you have to do is plan your flight connections well and make sure you leave sufficient time for layover, bad weather and flight delays. During the winter, the weather in Canada can be treacherous, so flight delays often occur, which only jeopardizes connections and causes missed flights. Fortunately, this can be cured by avoiding tight connections.
There are many ways to lower the expense and stress of travelling at Christmas or some other important holiday. Other useful tips include, checking in online instead of at the airport, choosing non-stop flights, packing wisely for fast security check-in, and having your travel documents in hand and ready to go.
If you're travelling internationally, these things are essential, especially having your travel documents in order. Don't forget to make sure your passport is still valid, and if you live in the Edmonton area and need your passport photo updated, stop in to PhotoStop, where we provide a professional passport photo service.
Have a wonderful holiday!