We know, we know — it’s freezing cold outside and the sun still sets by dinnertime. But, believe it or not, now is a great time to start thinking about spring break. And, planning ahead for springtime trips is a great way to brighten up a cold winter day while saving money on future travel expenses.
When planning a vacation, we’re all out to find the best tips and tricks for lower airfare rates. One study sought to find the answer to a common travel question: When is the best time to book my flight?
Based on one study of 1.5 billion airfares, the answer: for domestic flights, an average of 47 days in advance will get you the lowest fare. But after that, expect them to rise again, especially once you get to be 14 days out from your flight date. Flying to or from a small airport or on a connecting flight also usually costs less.
Places like Cabo San Lucas, Mexico and Tampa, Florida top the list of spring break destinations for 2017. But, if you want to get the most bang for your travel buck, look outside the most popular destinations, which typically carry inflated hotel and airfare rates.
Consider other sunny spots like Alabama’s Gulf Shores or New Orleans. Being open to a wide variety of destinations will increase your chances of finding a better deal (and a smaller crowd). Be flexible with lodging and booking options, too.
Last but not least, look for ways to save a few extra bucks outside of airfare and accommodations. Dining out is a major travel expense. So instead of eating all your meals out, book a room with a small kitchen or refrigerator. Make your first stop the grocery store and stock up on simple, inexpensive items like sandwich makings and breakfast foods. You can wine and dine for dinners while saving loads on breakfasts and lunches.
But remember, it is your vacation, so be sure to relax, enjoy yourself and splurge a little here and there.