By Rosanne Coloccia
Don’t you love tracking down a good bargain - some terrific little value “gem” just waiting to be discovered?
Great deals come straight to our desks every day here at Preferred Travel Services, and in these days of “finders” and various apps, there are all kinds of ways to track down a good rate for your next vacation. But how do you know when to buy? Check out my “golden rules of bargain travel” and you’ll be ready to grab that next great deal!
Keep an Eye Out
Do you have a certain destination in mind, but aren’t sure when’s the best time to go? Tourism board sites for both countries and cities are a great place to start - and here’s where a travel agent can be a terrific resource, too. There are all kinds of specials we see that might not be elsewhere online (early season, off-season, last minute values, etc.) and from a variety of sources: cruise lines, tour companies, airlines, and more.
And something else to keep in mind: unless you want to go at a peak travel season for your particular vacation destination, there are usually deals to be had. You may not find anything right away – but at least you’ll be well versed with what’s out there, will know a deal when you hear one, and can bag your bargain.
Isn’t it always the way? You try to plan your vacation around a school or national holiday and there’s not a sale in sight. Go the following week and you have your pick of terrific travel values. When it comes to getting the best rate, a little flexibility can go a long, long way.
I know it’s not possible to always be flexible – some professions must block out their vacation dates months in advance – but if you have a range of travel dates, instead of one specific week or weekend, you’ll be in a great position to take advantage of the travel bargains. Even a day or two either way can make a big difference!
Good deals come and go very quickly. Popular travel dates book up far in advance – for example, travel over the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays. A word to the wise traveler – book now! Popular hotels in favorite destinations – Hawaii, Mexico, and the Caribbean in particular – are already sold out (or darned close to it). Holiday sailings on popular cruise lines are in the same boat, so to speak.
I know it’s tempting to wait until the last possible minute, but depending when you want to travel, that strategy may get you shut out all together. When you hear a good rate for a time and place that fit your travel dreams, jump on it!
You may remember Rosanne Coloccia as "the travel lady" on KTVK's top-rated Good Morning Arizona, where she brought you travel tips and destination information for more than 14 years. She is delighted to once again be part of the travel industry that she loves, and Preferred Travel Services is more than delighted to have her on our team.