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Everyone wants to travel over the Christmas holidays. Even if you’re not planning to spend time with family, many people want to escape somewhere warm. Others just want to take advantage of the time off and get out of town for a few days. With all of that pressure on the travel industry, prices are sure to rise. But there are ways you can plan an awesome December vacation without breaking your budget.
If you’re lucky enough to know months in advance what days you’ll have off from work, get on with booking your vacation as early as possible. Packages to exotic locations start showing up the Spring and Summer of the year before, so get set to book as soon as you see a good deal. In order to get a heads up of potential vacations, subscribe to travel agent email lists and discount sites like Groupon.
There’s an old trick with air travel that some days are busier than others. So if you are flexible about the days you come and go, you can save big and avoid the crowds. When booking your flights, try to access a grid calendar where all of the airfares to your chosen destination are listed. Chances are, you’ll spot one day that’s half the price of all the rest — simply because there’s more demand for those other dates.
You can generally save cash by booking your airfare and accommodations together. Even if you plan to do some exploring and go elsewhere, sometimes it’s better to spend the money on a hotel room you don’t use than to book everything separately. Experiment with your options and stay open to different possibilities. If you’re open to nondirect flights and other less popular travel options, like overnight flights, you can save even more. Plus, with the best rewards credit cards, your travel spending could add up to some great perks.
No matter how you want to spend your December, with a little digging you can find the option that’s in your budget. Start as soon as you can with exploring potential destinations and flights. Even better, by starting early, you’ll have plenty of time to save up for your time away.