The first step, and one of the most important steps of planning a holiday, is of course booking it! This is the first step in making the trip of your dreams a reality. By this stage, you would have already decided on your destination. Whether heading to New York for a city break like no other, or a beach break in the Bahamas, deciding who to book with, what dates and how much cost is too much can be overwhelming. The holiday I have recently booked is the first holiday I will have had in over 4 years. Crazy I know, but sometimes life just gets in the way, and before you know it another year has passed by. It may also have something to do with a teeny, tiny little fear that I have of flying. (Actually a huge fear!)
Having not had to book a holiday in quite some time, it was quite tricky to even know where to start. Luckily my sister is a seasoned expert in travel so that definitely came in handy. However, if anyone is a little unsure, then why not read for tips on booking your perfect holiday!
Who to book with
A big fear for travelling is making sure that who you book with is reliable. I know that you can never predict every scenario that may occur, but I find that when it comes to putting your trust and your hard-earned cash into a business, you want to do your research. I’m not generally one to read online reviews, but when it comes to spending a lot of money, reviews on the companies and hotels can be extremely useful. Pictures can only show you so much, so when it comes to relying on what the hotel and airline presents to you, this isn’t in my opinion enough information to decide who is best to book with. Travel agents are great to speak to in person as they not only have their own travel experiences to those destinations, but they also have feedback from their customers as well. Research is key, so make sure you do everything to get a few opinions and advice on who to book with.
How much should you spend?
Whilst a 5 Star hotel and first class flight is what we all imagine our holidays to be, and wish they could be. Sometimes a holiday budget means that you have to stick to a price limit. Deciding the type of hotel you want first and for most will enable you to budget. You know that all-inclusive will cost more, but that all of your meals are covered. However, if you prefer to dine out and explore more, than self catering can be far more cost-effective. Yes you will need to dine out or cook for yourself, but this is a great way to save on cost. Another great way you can save on spending is through Airbnb, I have seen some great prices on this site, and the booking process is very simple. Rather than a hotel you can book an apartment, a house or anything that is listed on the site. This is particularly great for large groups.
Of course another huge price saver is booking at the right time of the year. For many people, school holidays get in the way of booking at the cheaper prices. However, if you do have time on your side to choose a holiday any time of year, than researching the best times of the year for the weather, as well as avoiding the peak season for booking, can really save a ton in expenses. If you enjoy last-minute planning and being slightly more spontaneous, than why not check out some last-minute deals that are at a great way to get a huge discount whilst still enjoying a great stay.
Always remember that you will also need travel money, and some emergency funds too.
Reading the fine print
An important thing that you should always do is read over everything before making any final decisions or payments. So many people book first and find out later, but there are policies in place and you need to make sure you read them before agreeing to them. Do you know when the payment is due? Will this be refundable? What documents do you need to confirm your booking and flights?
Be sure to be able to answer all of these questions before you hit that submit button. Making yourself and everyone you are travelling with very aware of the terms saves a great deal of time and more importantly money later on.
This is the most important part of your holiday experience, so make sure you get this right and you can then relax and start thinking of the fun aspects of your next trip away!
Thanks for reading everyone, and stay tuned for the next part of the holiday countdown!