With so many long weekends for the coming year and just a couple more for the rest of 2016, one must not let travel/vacay/holiday opportunities go to waste. One also must not let any finances/privileges go to waste while planning these much-needed getaways.
As such, we’ve compiled a couple of tips for awesome travel deals to ensure that you will get the most out of your break. Thank us later ;)
1. Engage a travel agent
There are many travel agencies readily available to assist you in planning your next trip. The good thing about travel agencies is that they snag you deals that you probably wouldn’t be able to get if you booked everything that you need for your trip on your own. The same goes for tour agencies because they would even go the extra mile and give you a fixed itinerary. Yay! Ah, but a fixed itinerary is a tight schedule and could be less exciting for those who want to go out and discover places/things on their own. Something to think about?
2. Use your points
Travel a lot for work? Great! Those accumulated mileage/frequent flyer points are there for a reason, and if you don’t use them, they may expire (validity depends on airline) and disappear into some abyss, never to be seen again. You’d be surprised with how much you can save, especially when you need to purchase long-haul flight tickets or get an upgrade. So don’t just hold on to them in hopes of them breeding more points (that’s never going to happen, by the way). Use them!
3. Follow the news
Keep up with what’s going on around the world! You may just score great deals to holiday destinations where the news aren’t good. It’s ironic and almost cruel, we know. This is because countries affected by mishaps e.g. Tohoku Japan, Greece, Hong Kong, will usually face a low for a while, therefore they would push tourism promotions and deals for would-be travellers. Plus (and this is important to remember), some disasters are isolated incidents so other parts of the country may not have been affected. If you’re feeling brave, go for it.
4. Scope out the travel fairs
We can think of one – the Malaysian Association of Tour and Travel Agents (MATTA) Fair. The annual travel fair takes place at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) in Lumpur and it’s a huge exhibition where tour and travel agents gather all under one roof to push deals and packages to travellers. We’re not gonna lie, the “value” offers can be really enticing. Alas, the fairs are usually jam-packed with thousands of people so you may have to fight/race people to scope out booths. Also, the fairs are far and few in between in selected states.
5. Wait (patiently) for a sale
Free seats? Cheap deals? Amazing discounts? Sure, but you’ll have to wait. Some airlines run really good promos such as AirAsia’s free seats or Vietjet’s zero dollar tickets. The only problem is, there’s no knowing when these sales will happen and to the average traveller, it always creeps up on them like a surprise. By the time you realise that there’s a promos, the good seats/dates are probably already gone! Also, these promos are always for a limited time and for a limited travel period so you may have to plan your holiday around said airlines’ schedule/availability. Hey, something’s gotta give, right?
6. Stalk their social platforms
Let’s face it – it’s the dawn of the “internetz” and most airlines (if not all) have their own social media platforms i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram. A low fare could pop up at any minute of the day or week, so follow tweets and Facebook pages closely because the best deals, even if they’re good for travel over a long period, last only a few hours — and be prepared to go wherever is cheap and “low season”.
7. Really shop around
There are multiple websites that cater to specifically to hotel bookings and hotel booking comparisons these days. Which means that your previously tedious job of shopping around for accommodation is streamlined and made easier because you won’t need to hit up individual hotel websites. Score! Because imagine having to open a gajillion tabs to look for that one hotel deal. Like, no thanks. Take note, however, that the services aren’t always cheap and they only cater to accommodation.
8. Subscribe to alerts
Alerts are your bestfriend (just like how I always say that Google is your bestfriend), especially when you’re too busy to visit multiple websites and Facebook pages for updates. Again, read point no.7 (above) where we described the horror of having to open a gajillion tabs to look for that one hotel deal. The scenario can be applied to this as well. But if your pet peeve is alert e-mails from multiple websites flooding your inbox then perhaps you’d want to opt out of this option. Just saying.
9. Know when to book
According to Allen Silkin, Flight Center USA’s vice president of e-commerce, Wednesday is typically the least expensive day to travel domestically by plane, followed by Tuesday and Saturday. Specifically, he said that travellers should buy airline tickets between midnight and 1am on Wednesdays or after 3pm on Tuesdays, as these times offer the best discounts. Keep that in mind. There’s also the myth that travellers find the lowest of low prices when they book at the last minute – it’s not true! Meanwhile, hotel deals vary depending on the kind of property you’re looking for. Obviously.
10. Or you could just use AirAsiaGo
AirAsiaGo is a real godsend. I’ve booked multiple trips to various destinations including Singapore, Vietnam, Shanghai, Thailand, and South Korea. With AirAsiaGo, the flights are sometimes FOC when I bundle a flight plus hotel/accommodation booking. They’re also strictly on a “you pay what you see” basis. On top of that, because I’m an AirAsiaGo member, I’m qualified for discounts up to 55% on hotel deals and am always amongst the first to be alerted of any exclusive promos. Dibs!
So put AirAsiaGo to work and make it work for you like it did for me! Here’s how:
1. First, hit up http://bit.ly/AAGO_Member to create an account. It’s really easy and filling in your details can be done in less than 5 minutes.
2. Remember to check the boxes and be the first to receive information on AirAsiaGo exclusive deals! Trust me, it’s not spam for avid travellers.
3. That’s it. You’re set! Enjoy savings up to 50% on hotels via http://bit.ly/AAGO_Member.
For more information, hit up AirAsiaGo’s Facebook page.