Here at #TeamCoco, like most millennials, we’re out to experience as much of the world as we can. But while being on the go might not be easy on our wallets, we aren’t about to let that stop us. From bagging the cheapest flights around to travel tips from industry insiders, here are five of our top travel hacks for getting a cheap travel destination – for wanderlusters whose travel dreams are bigger than their wallets.
Stalking the experts at Secret Flying is one of the best ways to secure deals that defy belief (we have them to thank for a business class ticket to Bangkok for less than $500 and nabbing tickets all the way from London to Auckland for less than $400). Their algorithm picks up discrepancies in flight pricing so you can take advantage of huge savings to be had as a result of human error, computer glitches or currency mispricings. #TeamCoco’s top tip- for major errors, you might have to take a chance and book the flight before the airline decides to honour the fare, so but be sure not to make any onward travel plans until the flight is confirmed. If you’re looking for specific destinations, you can also set up alerts, but we think sometimes the very best adventures start without a plan.
The best part about being young and relatively footloose and fancy-free is that most of today’s millennials can afford to be flexible on not only flight timing by travelling outside of peak seasons, but also on their destination. For wanderlusters that want a weekend away but aren’t sure where Sky Scanner allows you to search flights from your departure airport to anywhere in the world filtered by cost. You can also browse flights going to all destinations across a whole month, enabling you to see the cheapest destinations to fly to from the UK in September for example. Departing and arriving into different airports can also throw up good deals, so hit the ‘add nearby airports’ button, but be sure to clear your cookies to avoid fare hikes based on your search history.
God Save The Points
Here at House of Coco, we’re frequent travellers – but we make sure we follow the experts when it comes to airline points programs and hotel loyalty schemes. Whether you’re a newbie or a credit card connoisseur, websites like God Save The Points can help to easily explain the benefits of credit card reward schemes, which although not for everyone, can be a real benefit to frequent fliers. When it comes to airline reward schemes, creator of God Save The Points, Gilbert Ott recommends signing up to a single scheme – with BA, for example, you can sign up to their Executive Club for free, earning Avios towards airport lounge access and upgrades. You can also earn points when you’re not flying, by shopping through the BA website. There’s so much to learn about these types of travel hacks, so sign up for newsletters and fill your social feed to find the best deals.
If we aren’t staying in a hotel, one of our favourite ways to book accommodation is with Airbnb – not only can you often find better deals than hotels, but you can live like a local and are able to explore neighbourhoods outside of the usual tourist trail. Rentals often come with other perks, like the owner’s insider guide to the area and wealth of local knowledge and contacts, which not only enriches your experience but can save you money with insider prices. It’s also a good idea to ask for recommendations on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and even social groups like Girls Love Travel, as you never know who you might be able to connect with locally better explore a new destination.
Choosing Your Hotel
Once you’ve chosen where you want to stay (we recommend using TripAdvisor, i-Escape, and Google for reviews), use a price comparison website like Kayak to see what the best price is for your dates. Then, contact the hotel directly – they are usually able to offer you the best discounts direct as they prefer to avoid paying a commission to the larger booking sites. If they are unable to offer a better price, check booking.com or Expedia – as the biggest booking engines, they can sometimes afford to offer exclusive deals if they need to clear some stock, while for last minute stays, HotelsTonight offers prices which often cannot be found elsewhere.
There’s so much to learn about these types of travel hacks, so sign up for newsletters and fill your social feed to find the best deals.