Thursday, 3 June 2010

Last Minute Travel Tips

In some cases last minute travel cannot be avoided. Perhaps you have unused Holiday allowance you need to take or lose, maybe your packed schedule has just thrown you up a few free days or maybe you need to visit an ill relative who lives abroad. There are many reasons why you may decide to take a last minute break. The following last minute travel tips are here to help you keep stress free and excited about your forthcoming trip.
Online booking
There are a lot of advantages to booking online. Travel comparison sites link into flights, accommodation and car hire companies and can often connect you to load of last minute deals.  Dedicated last minute travel sites such as discount flight brokers specialize in providing short notice travel arrangements and can offer cheap airfares or reduce rate hotel rooms. Most offer flexible search tools allowing you to find the deals that fit with your requirements and providing with alternative options if you can shuffle your availability around by a few days.
The general rule with airlines is that fares increase closer to the time of travel. However it actually cost the airlines for every plane that flies with empty seats, so discounts are often available last minute.  A number of airlines offer internet only fares, so be sure to check directly on their websites, if you fly regularly you may also be able to put your frequent flyer miles to good use. Consider flying on a week day in the early morning or late evening, these flights tend to be less popular so often provide the lowest fares.
Hotels and Resorts can get booked up early, especially if you are looking to travel at a peak holiday time. Try calling the main reservations desk directly and asking if they have rooms available. Remember to speak nicely and you may even be able to get yourself a discount.  If you are flexible about your accommodation, look online for sites specializing in holiday rentals directly from the owners and several promote last minute availability or special offers. Contact information is displayed on the listings so you can call the owner direct to enquire about availability.
Ask about deals and discounts
However you book always be on the lookout for a special offer or discount and do not be afraid to ask. Try and stay away from peak travel times like public holidays and major events. These are sure to increase the price of your stay.Many airlines and accommodation providers would prefer to give a discount last minute opposed to it remaining unsold.  As the saying goes “Some money is better than no money”
With your flights and accommodation booked, make sure you 
remain stress free with your packing. Keep it light to avoid paying excess luggage on check-in and be sure you have essentials like your toothbrush and tooth paste. These an be expensive to purchase last minute at the airport or on arrival in resort. Above all make sure you have checked your passport, that it is valid for the required length of time and that you have put it safely and securely away with the rest of your luggage. After all the rushing around the last thing you want is to get the the airport and not be able to travel! 

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