Last Wednesday evening the hubs and I were sitting on the couch thinking of what we could do for the coming weekend. “Oh, let’s go to the movies on Friday night.” “Or we could organize the closets Saturday.” Exciting stuff, right? With nothing really planned I started to think of how nice it would be to get away for a few days. But surely, flights anywhere must be unreasonable by now, right? Right?.. Only one way to find out.
A few clicks later we were booked and planning a four-day getaway in New York City. So how did we manage to plan a last minute trip without breaking the bank? Here are some tips.
Choose The Right Destination
Sam and I always keep a list of destinations we’d like to go to so that when these opportunities arrive, we have an idea of where we’re trying to go. New York had been on our list for awhile and it turned out we both had good reasons for a visit beyond the obvious, “Who wouldn’t want to spend a long weekend in the City?” factor. While we both work from home here in Tampa, Sam’s corporate office is based in New York. My client was in town from Austria and we had friends who were also in town. Simple, New York it is.
If we hadn’t had so many factors pointing to New York, we typically do flight searches for our destinations and find the most affordable city. Sometimes that means traveling on either a very late or very early flight out. We’ve also found that traveling out on Saturday and returning midweek will make for not only a more affordable experience, but a less crowded one, too. Flying on weekends will always be a safe way to save a few extra dollars.
Pro Tip: If you’re up to go anywhere, there’s a great tool from Kayak that will show you where you can go anywhere in the world and for how much out of your home airport. Sometimes I just check it out to see how rates and destinations are faring so when we’re ready to go somewhere, I have a good idea for budget and possible places.
Tap Into Your Travel Rewards
If you have any travel rewards from your credit cards or loyalty programs, now’s the time to use them. A couple of nights won’t cost a ton of points (hotel-wise) and this way you may still have some to spare for your next getaway. For our flight, we actually booked with my Delta reward points for this trip. The closer out you are to your travel date, rates can either sky rocket or level out depending on how many seats are available. A lot of seats available? Lower prices. Two seats left? Expect a bigger price tag. Researching destinations and tapping into your rewards can help get you where you want to be without having to spend much cash.
Weigh All Of Your Options
Are there nearby airports that offer a more direct or affordable flight? Is it easier to drive? Can you fly back on Monday morning before you have to return to the office? Make the most of your options by weighing all of the possibilities. This is your time! You deserve to make the most of these getaways so you can enjoy more of them.
Wanting to plan a getaway of your own? I’d love to hear what destinations are on your weekend lists!
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