You will generally find that you can save the most money on holiday travel if you purchase a complete package deal. This is less expensive than buying each piece that you need individually. It also provides you with only one confirmation number that you need to keep track of instead of several different ones.
There are literally hundreds of sites online where you can look for holiday travel deals. One of he sites I I recommend Travelzoo.com. We were recently travelling to Australia and I wanted to book a flight from Melbourne to the Gold Coast. The best deal I could find on line was from JetStar for $90 one way. Through Travelzoo I learned about a one day sale that JetStar was having a one day sale where the tickets were two for the price of one. I saved $180 on this leg of our flight. The membership of Travelzoo is free. Another site I recommend is Hipmunk . What I like about this site is that it not only compares flights but you can see all of your options at once, making it easier to compare.
You can search by your destination in a search engine or choose the various sites you have heard about. It is a good idea to keep a list of the sites you visit and the prices you are coming across. This way you can compare the prices and easily remember where you want to go back to. One of the tricks used by the airlines sites is to track your visits through "cookies" on your computer and to use that information to either increase or decrease the prices offered to you. If you are visiting sites more than a few times, use the ability of your browsers to clear your cookies.
Most of the time fares will be cheaper online than by contacting the place directly because it saves their business time of having to set up the travel arrangements for you. Make sure you carefully read all of the information though because some travel deals have hidden costs that you don’t want to be liable for. You also need to check into the cancellation policies and about rescheduling your trip.
Some online travel deals don’t offer any refunds at all so if a family member dies or you have an unexpected illness you won’t be able to get your money back. Even if you show up late for your flight because you got caught up at security they won’t honor your purchase. This can be extremely risky because there are too many variables that can affect holiday travel.
Make sure you also pay close attention to the amount of time that you will be in the process of getting to your destination. You may find a killer price but it isn't going to be worth it if you have several connecting flights and layovers along the way. Look for direct methods to get to your destination whenever it is possible. There are simply too many delays during holiday travel to ensure you can get to those connections on time.
Many of the sites you visit online will allow you to sign up for special offers and promotions. You should take advantage of these offers so that you don’t have to continually return to their site to check for changes in prices. Some of them even allow you to enter a price so that you can be notified if the price of the trip you want drops to that price. For those that can only afford holiday travel if it fits a specific budget, this is a valuable feature.
During your search online for holiday travel, be flexible with your dates. You will be able to save hundreds of dollars just by being willing to leave a day earlier or leaving in the evening instead of the afternoon. Those that want a specific travel arrangement will find this ties them into more expensive offers. Even if you travel a day earlier and have to pay for a hotel room that extra night you could save hundreds of dollars.
It does take some initial planning of where you want to travel and how you are going to get there in order to find the best travel deals. Investing a few hours of your time in getting the best price though is well worth the savings you will get from it. Millions of people travel each year over the holidays but some of them pay more for the same trip because they didn't look for holiday travel deals online.