What’s better than planning your next holiday? Saving money on your next holiday, that’s what!
With thousands of people searching for their next perfect getaway, we’ve put together our top holiday money-saving tips to make sure you get the most for your hard-earned cash.
Plan Half the fun of booking a holiday is deciding what you want to do while you’re away. Whether you’re planning to visit famous sites, spend all day at the best beaches, or hit the hottest clubs – take the time to plan your itinerary and book your accommodation accordingly. There’s no point getting a hotel deal that saves you £50 if you’ll end up spending more than that travelling to and from the locations you want to visit.
Scan Use sites like Skyscanner, Travelsupermarket and Trivago to check for the cheapest flights, hotels and package holidays. Researching might take a little bit of time but could save you a fortune in the long run.
Man…chester? Whether you’re booking flight-only, or a full package holiday it can sometimes work out cheaper to fly from an airport a little further from home. This is especially true if you’re limited to school summer holidays! Travelling to an airport such as Manchester or Newcastle before the English schools have finished up could save you hundreds of pounds, compared to flying direct from Glasgow.
Before you go
Get yourself covered As soon as your holiday is booked, get your travel insurance sorted – that way you’ll be covered if you’re forced to cancel your holiday. Some bank accounts offer free travel insurance, so check if you’re already covered. It might be tempting to go for the cheapest option, but if it doesn’t provide the cover you need it’s as good as worthless. Money Supermarket has a helpful guide on travel insurance and which level of cover you’ll need.
Don’t get weighed down To avoid excess charges, check the baggage allowance for the airline you’re travelling with and weigh your baggage before you go. Allowances can vary dramatically between airlines, and even between the type of ticket, e.g. ‘economy plus’ might have a greater allowance than ‘standard economy’. If you’re travelling with small children, ask if your airline allows you to check-in a car seat or buggy for free, in addition to your regular luggage.
Get app happy There are apps for everything these days, including holiday essentials like guidebooks, audiobooks, translation tools, weather forecasts and local transport. Download the ones you need before you go and it could save you money – and space in your luggage for other essentials!
At the airport
Snack happy Most airports will allow you to take solid snacks (sandwiches, crisps, crackers, biscuits etc.) through security and onto the plane, so you could save a fortune keeping hunger at bay compared to the inflated in-flight prices. Liquids over 100ml aren’t allowed through, but it’s still often cheaper to buy water or juice in the departure lounge rather than onboard.
Park smart If you’re leaving your car at the airport, make sure you book parking in advance – there are good discounts to be had from sites like holidayextras. Even if you book online on the day of travel you could still save cash compared to the rates you’ll get if you pull-up, park and pay.
When you’re there
Buy a travel pass Walking is obviously the cheapest option, but if you don’t fancy pounding the pavements, buying a multi-trip or daily transport pass could save on costs. Each city will have a different travel system in place, so do your research online, or find a local that you can ask for advice on the best deals.
To tip or not to tip? Tipping and services charges vary depending on what country you’re visiting. For instance – in the US your bill won’t include a service charge, but if you received good service, a tip of around 15 to 20% in restaurants and bars is normal. On the continent, a service charge is often included, so make sure you don’t pay twice by looking out for the words ‘servis compris’ in France, ‘servizio incluso’ in Italy and ‘servicio incluido’ in Spain.
Watch out for data roaming charges Unless you go over your provider’s ‘fair usage’ policy, you shouldn’t receive roaming charges when using your phone in an EU country. However, if you’re travelling outside of the EU, consider buying a SIM for the country you are visiting as mobile roaming charges can apply and you could end up with a hefty bill on your return to the UK.
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