flying http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/13537/all en-US 8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_plane_phone_522472058.jpg" alt="Woman making costly flight booking mistakes all the time" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Whether you travel for pleasure or for business, buying a plane ticket can be a significant travel expense. And there's no reason to spend more than you have to. However, there are some common mistakes you may not even realize are costing you extra money. Recognize them, and start saving on your next booking.</p> <h2>1. Revealing Your Browsing History</h2> <p>If you haven't been searching for flights in incognito mode, or at the very least clearing your Internet browser's cache, you may be spending more on flights than you should. That's because flight booking sites often use technology that tracks what its customers (<em>you</em>) have been browsing.</p> <p>That means they know when you've looked at a flight multiple times. Rather than lowering the price to lure you to a final sale, they may raise the price to encourage you to buy before the price goes any higher. You can easily remedy this by browsing in incognito mode or clearing your cache, saving anywhere from $50&ndash;$200 in some cases. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-avoid-sneaky-online-price-changes?ref=seealso" target="_blank">6 Ways to Avoid Sneaky Online Price Changes</a>)</p> <p>Next time, don't get tricked into buying a ticket that's too expensive. Clear your cache first and buy your ticket second.</p> <h2>2. Buying Your Ticket From a Booking Site</h2> <p>Search engines that aggregate flights from a variety of airlines can be a great resource when you're trying to find the cheapest flight (see tip number eight for a great search engine). However, you need to be aware that some third party bookers will charge you an extra booking fee &mdash; which you can avoid by booking your flight directly through the airline's website.</p> <p>Some small and more obscure airlines may not have a website, in which case you can either call or shop around for a third party booker that doesn't have these fees.</p> <p>Even if the booking engine doesn't list a fee separately in the price breakdown, it may still be jacking the price up. It's always a good idea to refer back to the airline's listing of the flight and make sure that you're buying it from the least expensive website. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-secrets-to-getting-the-lowest-rate-from-travel-websites?ref=seealso" target="_blank">4 Secrets to Getting the Lowest Rate From Travel Websites</a>)</p> <h2>3. Booking to Fly on a More Expensive Day</h2> <p>Another common mistake that people make is forgetting to check flexible dates. Different days of the week usually offer different fares. For example, flights leaving the U.S. on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays are the least expensive days to fly, according a study by Fare Compare.</p> <p>If your schedule is adjustable and you're not checking flexible dates, you're probably paying more than you should for your ticket. Prices can vary wildly from day to day for the exact same flight.</p> <h2>4. Flying Into a More Expensive Airport</h2> <p>Some airports cost more to fly into than others, depending on taxes and airport fees. If you're flying into the most expensive airport, you're going to be spending more money on your plane ticket than you have to, and the same is true with respect to the airport you're flying <em>out </em>of.</p> <p>For example, the United Kingdom has an Air Passenger Duty (APD) of $90 for one adult economy traveler to fly out on a long haul flight. If you have the time, it's cheaper to book a short haul flight (with an APD of $16) to a place like Dublin or Paris, then book your long haul from there.</p> <p>In general, it pays to be aware of what your departure and destination airports are charging you to take off or land there. It may require some digging around to find these fees, but doing so could save you money on fees associated with your departure and destination airports, and even those where you have a layover.</p> <h2>5. Forgetting Your Airline Rewards Points</h2> <p>If you travel infrequently, or are a member of a lot of airline rewards programs, it may be easy to forget those piles of frequent flyer miles you've accumulated through flights or <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-co-branded-airline-credit-cards?ref=internal" target="_blank">credit card airline rewards</a> programs. The last thing you want to do is let a hefty rewards stash expire simply because you forgot about it. Whether you use a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-started-with-travel-rewards-in-4-simple-steps?ref=internal" target="_blank">rewards-tracking website</a> or an old-fashioned spreadsheet, it pays to keep track of your rewards points and expiration dates. Getting organized can prevent you from missing out on opportunities for free travel. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips?ref=seealso" target="_blank">9 Ways to Use Credit Card Rewards to Get Free Trips</a>)</p> <h2>6. Missing Out on the Best Sales</h2> <p>How can you find out about the best deals on airfare? Airlines almost always have an email newsletter where they will announce their sales, but if you're not subscribed, you're likely missing out on these deals.</p> <p>It doesn't cost you anything to subscribe to airline emails, and it could save you a lot the next time you're ready to book a ticket.</p> <h2>7. Buying Your Ticket Too Early or Too Late</h2> <p>How early or late you buy your ticket can affect how much you pay as well. According to studies by CheapAir, the best time to book domestic airfare in the U.S. is about eight weeks in advance of your trip. If you can't be that exact, at least try to book within a window of 21&ndash;112 days before your flight, which is when tickets will be at their lowest prices.</p> <p>There's some hype about being able to grab last-minute cheap tickets, but this usually has to do with a quirky sale &mdash; so it's nothing you should count on if you've been planning your trip for a while.</p> <h2>8. Using the Wrong Search Engine</h2> <p>When it comes to paying less for a flight, using the right search engine is a must to ensure you're getting the best prices. You can use the free <a href="https://matrix.itasoftware.com/" target="_blank">ITA Matrix</a>, which has been rebuilt on Google technology, to take advantage of the same software that travel agents often use to book you a flight. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use?ref=seealso" target="_blank">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a>)</p> <p>Booking flights can be a costly endeavor, but there are plenty of ways to save money and make sure you're getting the best price on the market. See how much money you can save using these tips.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F8%20Costly%20Flight%20Booking%20Mistakes%20You%20Make%20All%20the%20Time.jpg&amp;description=8%20Costly%20Flight%20Booking%20Mistakes%20You%20Make%20All%20the%20Time" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/8%20Costly%20Flight%20Booking%20Mistakes%20You%20Make%20All%20the%20Time.jpg" alt="8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time" width="250" height="374" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amanda-gokee">Amanda Gokee</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-save-on-hotel-stays">9 Simple Ways to Save on Hotel Stays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-little-known-ways-to-save-when-booking-spring-travel">6 Little-Known Ways to Save When Booking Spring Travel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-affordable-travel-items-that-you-shouldnt-leave-home-without">9 Affordable Travel Items That You Shouldn&#039;t Leave Home Without</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-to-get-college-kids-home-for-the-holidays-for-cheap">6 Ways to Get College Kids Home for the Holidays for Cheap</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel Airfare airports booking browsing history flights flying hacks rewards miles search engines tickets trips vacations Mon, 09 Jan 2017 10:00:09 +0000 Amanda Gokee 1865343 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_75848571_MEDIUM.jpg" alt="sneaky vacation costs" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>We all love going away on vacation, but we don't love the costs associated with it. Usually, the big costs are taken into account before leaving the house &mdash; the hotel, the flight, the attractions, even the rental car. But what we often forget about are the little costs that can eat into the budget before your plane even takes off. Here are 10 of the biggest offenders, with a little advice on cutting down these last-minute expenses.</p> <h2>1. Check-In Fees</h2> <p>Most of us check-in way ahead of time to avoid lines at the airport. However, more airlines are starting to charge for different aspects of this service, knowing that you would rather pay a fee than leave it to the last minute. In some instances, you will be charged for the convenience of checking-in online. Amazingly, there may even be a cost for printing a boarding pass (currently Spirit charges $10 if you have one printed at the check-in counter), so look for options that are free (like printing yours at home, or using an app). (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airline-miles-secrets-only-frequent-flyers-know?ref=seealso">5 Airline Miles Secrets Only Frequent Flyers Know</a>)</p> <h2>2. Checked or Carry-On Luggage Fees</h2> <p>If you've flown anywhere in the last few years, you probably noticed how insanely full the overhead luggage compartments were. That's because people got wise to the checked baggage fees, and started bringing even more carry-on luggage instead. In fact, you'd often see flight attendants asking for carry-on bags to be checked free, due to space issues. However, recent carry-on fees (which are usually more than checked baggage fees) have reversed that trend. Now, there's plenty of room in the cabin, because once again, people are looking for the cheapest option. So, even if you have a bag that's carry-on-sized, look at the prices. It may be cheaper to check it.</p> <h2>3. Overweight Luggage Charges</h2> <p>This one can really bite you at the last minute. If your bag weighs more than 50 pounds, you will pay a penalty, and this can vary depending on the airline. For instance, Frontier will charge you $75, whereas American Airlines tacks on a whopping $200! Sometimes, you can do some quick swapping between bags to get them all under 50 pounds, but if that's not an option, you may find it cheaper to leave some items at the airport (give them away, trash them) rather than pay the hefty fee.</p> <p>A good way to avoid this is to buy a luggage scale and weigh your luggage before you ever get to the airport. Bring it with you, too. You may also want to pack a light extra bag that you can use in an emergency. Usually, the additional bag fee is cheaper than the overweight bag charge. Or, try <a href="https://www.luggageforward.com/excess-baggage-fees/">Luggage Forward,</a> which ships your bags to and from your destination.</p> <h2>4. Seat Selection</h2> <p><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5170/seat_selection.jpg" width="605" height="340" alt="" /></p> <p>If you're happy with any old seat on the plane, you usually don't have to worry. But if you would like to choose your seat (and if you're not traveling alone, you will most likely want to sit next to the person you're flying with), you'll be faced with a variety of costs. These costs get much higher as you move toward the front of the plane, where there is extra legroom, or if you want to sit in an exit row. Some airlines, like Spirit, will charge you for an advanced seat assignment, no matter where it is on the plane, so you may want to wait until you get to the check-in counter.</p> <h2>5. Food</h2> <p>When you're on vacation, you don't think much about food on the way to your destination. But remember, you're a captive audience in an airport. And when you're hungry or thirsty, you'll pay big bucks. Airport food is always more expensive than it is elsewhere, and when you're traveling as a family, those costs add up quickly. On the plane, it's even worse, with in-flight meals now costing upward of $10 for something quite meager. So before you leave, try and eat a good meal to keep you going through the airport and flight.</p> <h2>6. Parking</h2> <p>If you park at the airport, you won't be paying for this until you return. But make sure you budget for it, because it can really add up (especially at a garage parking, which can run over $20 a day). Instead, look at off-airport parking, which is cheaper and can be paid for in advance. These places offer valet, and covered and uncovered parking, with free shuttles to and from the airport. Most offer coupons and discounts as well, so do a little research before you book. You can get your parking down to $5 a day if you're smart.</p> <h2>7. Car Transportation</h2> <p>If you decide to take a taxi to the airport, you will save on parking fees, but you'll replace them with cab fares. An airport run is often a standard fee for most cab companies, and usually comes with the &quot;airport access fee&quot; tacked on. Depending on where you live in relation to the airport, you can easily spend $75 on a one-way trip, and that does not include the tip. Services like Lyft and Uber are cheaper (although watch out for the surge pricing with Uber), and you can also find car services that specialize in airport runs.</p> <h2>8. Currency Exchange</h2> <p>If you're traveling out of the country, you'll want to turn your dollars into cash you can use when you arrive. And that costs money. Depending where and when you do it, the service fee and poor exchange rate could really cost you. <em>Do not</em> exchange your money at the airport. It's the worst place to do it because it's the most convenient. Instead, order the cash from your own bank way ahead of time, or use a reputable online service. If you can, bring a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smarter-security-and-no-foreign-transaction-fees-the-best-credit-cards-to-use-while-on-vacation?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=internal&amp;utm_campaign=travel">credit card with no foreign transaction fees</a> with you. It'll really help.</p> <h2>9. Visa Fees</h2> <p>Depending on your destination, you will have to purchase visas to enter the country. For instance, right now U.S. passport holders are required to pay a <a href="http://www.mychinavisa.com/rates/">$140 fee per visa to enter China</a>. That's almost $600 for a family of four, which really adds a lot onto the cost of the vacation. You could choose to visit a country that does not require a visa. There are currently 38 countries in the Visa Waiver Program, so if you pick one of those, you don't have to worry about this fee.</p> <h2>10. Carry-On Friendly Items</h2> <p>If you're planning to bring toiletries and similar personal items on the plane with you, get ready to go shopping. The restrictions are quite clear: You can bring a quart-sized bag of essentials, but each liquid, aerosol or gel is <a href="https://www.tsa.gov/travel/security-screening/liquids-rule">restricted to just 3.4 ounces</a>. If you bring expensive perfume or cologne, and it's bigger than 3.4 ounces, it will be confiscated.</p> <p><em>What are some other sneaky vacation fees to look out for? Share with us!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly.jpg&amp;description=10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Sneaky%20Vacation%20Costs%20That%20Add%20Up%20Quickly.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage">7 Reasons You Should Check Your Luggage</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-fool-proof-ways-to-stay-within-your-travel-budget">7 Fool-Proof Ways to Stay Within Your Travel Budget</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-easy-ways-to-budget-for-summer-vacation">7 Easy Ways to Budget for Summer Vacation</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-all-inclusive-vacations-and-cruises-worth-the-money">Are All-Inclusive Vacations and Cruises Worth the Money?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Budgeting Travel air travel expenses fees flying Food luggage parking travel budget vacation vacation costs Tue, 16 Aug 2016 10:30:12 +0000 Paul Michael 1773244 at http://www.wisebread.com Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal? http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_map_credit_card_94754805.jpg" alt="Woman learning if airline or travel credit cards are better" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>There is a battle underway for a place in the wallets of credit card users who value travel rewards. In one corner are the traditional <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-co-branded-airline-credit-cards?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=internal&amp;utm_campaign=cc_article">airline credit cards</a>, which offer frequent flyer miles, as well as perks and benefits when traveling with a particular airline.</p> <p>Putting up a great fight against these traditional airline cards are the new crop of general travel rewards cards. These travel reward cards are not associated with a single airline. Rather, they offer points and miles that are worth a fixed amount toward travel reservations, or they can offer points that can be transferred to miles with several different airlines, and even hotels, allowing more flexibility when redeeming rewards for travel.</p> <p>The <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=internal&amp;utm_campaign=cc_article">best travel rewards card</a> for you depends on your travel preferences.</p> <h2>The Current State of Airline Credit Cards</h2> <p>It wasn't that long ago that frequent flyer miles were like gold. Airlines published award charts, and travelers simply had to accumulate enough miles and then redeem them for the flights they wanted. And when miles were redeemed for expensive flights in business class, or reservations with little advance notice, it was possible to receive tremendous value from these miles.</p> <p>But now, airlines have devalued their miles by raising the number of miles needed for award seats, and by reducing the number of award seats available. However, these airline credit cards attract frequent flyers by offering an array of perks and benefits that save money and time, and provide comfort and convenience. These benefits include a free checked bag, priority boarding, in-flight discounts, access to airport lounges, and more.</p> <p>These cards make sense for travelers who are committed to flying a single airline, are flexible with travel times, and can use the additional benefits. Flying frequently with that airline will rack up miles faster than using another credit card because of the extra bonus points.</p> <h2>The Case for General Travel Reward Cards</h2> <p>For those who travel infrequently, or like to have flexibility in which airline they fly, the more general travel rewards cards will work better. Whether it's a card that can transfer points to various airline partners, or a card that simply offers a statement credit for any travel purchase, users won't get stuck with sold-out award seats or overpriced ones.</p> <p>Finally, these general travel reward cards are more likely to offer bonus points or miles for non-travel categories, so infrequent travelers can still rack up <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-for-everyday-purchases?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=internal&amp;utm_campaign=cc_article">points for everyday purchases</a>.</p> <h2>Bottom Line</h2> <p>By examining your travel habits and the way you like to redeem your miles, the right kind of travel rewards credit card for your needs will become clear. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/choose-the-best-travel-rewards-credit-card-with-this-guide?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=seealso&amp;utm_campaign=cc_article">Use this Guide to Choose the Best Travel Rewards Credit Card for You</a>)</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-expert-tips-for-redeeming-miles-for-free-travel">12 Expert Tips for Redeeming Miles for Free Travel</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-ways-to-use-travel-rewards-cards-to-get-free-trips">How to Use Travel Rewards Cards to Get Free Trips</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airline-miles-secrets-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Airline Miles Secrets Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/dont-make-these-6-credit-card-sign-up-bonus-mistakes">Don&#039;t Make These 6 Credit Card Sign-Up Bonus Mistakes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards Travel benefits best value flying frequent flyers miles rewards vacation Tue, 09 Aug 2016 09:30:31 +0000 Jason Steele 1767288 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Airlines With the Best Customer Service http://www.wisebread.com/5-airlines-with-the-best-customer-service <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-airlines-with-the-best-customer-service" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/palm_trees_plane_81687745.jpg" alt="Learning which airlines have the best customer service" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Flying is not the customer-focused experience it was back in the 60s and 70s. In fact, talk about flying to many people today and a grimace will make its way onto their faces. Some say that a plane has become nothing more than a Greyhound bus with wings, and the airlines seem to charge for every little thing. From fees for both checked and carry-on bags, fees for online check-in, charges for movies and meals, and even paying to rent headsets, you get very little for your money these days.</p> <p>So, when AirlineQualityRating.com releases the findings of its annual customer service study, everyone who flies should take note. If you are going to be in the air, it may as well be with one of the top five airlines that excel at customer service. Here they are.</p> <h2>1. Virgin America</h2> <p>The airline owned by Sir Richard Branson continues to have an incredibly positive impact on those who fly the Virgin skies. It all starts when you enter the aircraft and are greeted by a sumptuous glow of purple in the main cabin (and when you get to Select and First Class, you're in a completely different world). Seats in the main cabin are soft black leather, and of course, there is the vast array of on-demand entertainment, Wi-Fi, personal outlets, and snacks including jerky sausage and veggie chips.</p> <p>However, where Virgin America really steps it up is the customer service, and the overall passenger experience. Virgin recently introduced &quot;Seat-to-Seat delivery + Chat,&quot; and it's the kind of innovation that Sir Branson is known to embrace. If you're on a flight and fancy striking up a conversation with someone, be it a friend, a co-worker, or a complete stranger, the on-board touch screen system lets you break the ice by sending a drink or a snack to another seat. You can also mingle in a chat room, or flirt with someone you saw as you were getting on board. Suddenly, the prospect of a long flight can be turned on its head, and you are now entering an experience similar to a bar or club that uses social media. What's more, the flight attendants are known to be some of the most friendly (and funny) flying today.</p> <p>It was recently reported that Alaska Airlines plans to purchase Virgin America for $2.6 billion. No doubt the continued excellence in customer service, and on board innovation, was a big part of that purchasing decision. Let's hope it doesn't negatively affect the Virgin America experience.</p> <h2>2. JetBlue</h2> <p>The JetBlue experience is certainly different from most carriers these days. Take a quick look at their &quot;Experience JetBlue&quot; page and the first thing you'll see is the word <em>free</em>.</p> <p>Yes. Free. And this is from a low-cost carrier.</p> <p>Once you're onboard a JetBlue flight, you are treated to <em>unlimited </em>free brand name snacks and drinks, including Cheez-Its, Craisins, Terra Blues, and an array of cold Coke and Seagrams beverages. Dunkin' Donuts provides the tea and coffee. JetBlue also boasts the most legroom in coach of any airlines, and you can boost that to an Even More Space seat if you feel like treating yourself.</p> <p>And then, of course, there's the customer service. It's award-winning, ensuring your travel is the very best. To this end, JetBlue introduced the Customer Bill of Rights, and it guarantees that you get the very best flight your money can buy &mdash; or, you get your money back.</p> <p>Want more? Well, if your flight is delayed by between 90 minutes and two hours, you'll get a $25 credit for future JetBlue travel. If that hits six hours or more, you get a $200 credit. If it's an onboard ground delay, you'll get the same $200 after five hours.</p> <p>What does this mean? Well, if you're JetBlue, you have quite the financial incentive to keep the planes running on time. It's yet another reason JetBlue is nipping at the heels of Virgin America, and may well take the number one spot next year. See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/earn-award-flights-faster-with-the-jetblue-rewards-mastercard-from-barclaycard?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=seealso&amp;utm_campaign=travel">Earn Award Flights Faster With the JetBlue Card</a></p> <h2>3. Delta</h2> <p>While not quite matching the performance of the top two on the list, Delta comes in at an impressive third place, beating out two airlines that are renowned for customer care. Perhaps part of that was Delta's on-time percentage for 2015, which was a remarkable 85.9%, with only two bags per 1,000 passengers mishandled.</p> <p>Delta does free snacks, including Biscoff cookies Starbucks coffee, and the usual array of beverages (although as is usual these days, you have to purchase larger snacks and alcoholic drinks).</p> <p>If you choose Delta to fly international, you'll get uninterrupted sleep courtesy of a sleep kit featuring eyeshades and earplugs (also handy for those screaming kids that can really put a dent in your good humor). See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/which-delta-skymiles-credit-card-has-the-best-value?utm_source=wisebread&amp;utm_medium=seealso&amp;utm_campaign=travel">Which Delta SkyMiles Credit Card has the Best Value?</a></p> <h2>4. Hawaiian</h2> <p>Last year Hawaiian were in the number two spot, so they have dropped a few places. But don't let this convince you that their customer service has dropped, or that they are not making the effort. Rather, other airlines have upped their game based on some of the stories that have been told about Hawaiian.</p> <p>For a start, Hawaiian flights are more likely to be on time than any other airlines. In 2015, 88.4% of the flights operated by Hawaiian were on time and ready to go, which is a huge achievement.</p> <p>Hawaiian recently took a leaf out of Priceline.com's &quot;What's it worth to you?&quot; strategy, and introduced the Bud Up system. Basically, you book regular tickets and then enter a bid to upgrade those seats to First Class. If the bid is accepted (presumable based on availability, popularity, and route), you will get your seats bumped to First Class at the price you dictated. Could this be as little as $1 each? Doubtful&hellip;but who knows!</p> <p>Of course, being Hawaiian, the airline prides itself on the more laid-back customer service approach you would expect from the island paradise it is named after. Big smiles, great food, and if you like, you can purchase a Lei Greeting and have a garland of fresh flowers draped over you on your arrival at your destination.</p> <h2>5. Alaska</h2> <p>As mentioned in the top spot, Alaska recently put in a huge bid for Virgin America, so perhaps next year they will take the number one slot. For now, Alaska is sitting pretty in fifth place, and this is largely due to the low number of complaints it received in 2015; just 0.5 complaints for every 100,000 passengers. Or, five complaints for every one million passengers.</p> <p>When you consider how much people hate flying today, finding only five people in a million who had something negative to say about their trip is mind-boggling. So, what is Alaska doing right?</p> <p>According to J.D. Power, a lot. They have awarded Alaska &quot;Highest in Customer Satisfaction Among Traditional Carriers in North America&quot; nine years running.</p> <p>Alaska's Customer Service Commitment plays a big part in this rating. It includes a promise of the lowest available fare, flexibility in the first 24 hours of booking, special treatment during extended delays, a guarantee of a clean and comfortable aircraft, and seamless partnerships with partners including Delta and Peninsula.</p> <p>And if you're wondering, the next five airlines for 2016 are&hellip;</p> <ol start="6"> <li>Southwest</li> <li>SkyWest</li> <li>United</li> <li>ExpressJet</li> <li>American</li> </ol> <p><em>What's your favorite airline?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airlines-with-the-best-customer-service">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel airlines alaska airlines customer service Delta flying hawaiian airlines JetBlue vacation virgin america Mon, 18 Jul 2016 09:30:42 +0000 Paul Michael 1753207 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_airport_travel_000072076767.jpg" alt="Woman learning travel hacks that frequent flyers keep secret" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Airports can be a drag. Long lines, grumpy staff, crowded waiting areas, and poorly automated climate control can really put a damper on your travel day. But layovers, delays, and airport lobbies don't have to be uncomfortable. Using these expert tips, you can hack your way into a more enjoyable flying experience.</p> <h2>1. Skip the Lines</h2> <p>&quot;Oops! Am I in the wrong line?&quot; Most of the time, these simple words will allow you to get checked in at the priority desk without any issue. If you are at the airport and you see a painfully long check-in line and an empty priority line, consider &quot;accidentally&quot; walking up to the latter. You might be surprised at how often your mistake can save you time.</p> <p>You may also want to apply for <a href="https://www.tsa.gov/tsa-precheck">TSA Pre-Check</a> or get a <a href="http://www.globalentry.gov/">Global Entry</a> card which allows travelers to go through security faster and get expedited clearance through customs. There are fees associated with applying, but there are some credit cards that reimburse the cost. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-credit-cards-that-offer-tsa-pre-check-and-global-entry-reimbursement?ref=seealso">Best Credit Cards that Offer TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry Reimbursement</a>)</p> <h2>2. Get Upgraded</h2> <p>The check-in agents at the airport have more power than you know. If there is space in the first class cabin, they can <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-10-cheapest-ways-to-fly-first-class">upgrade you free of charge</a>. Be extremely nice to the staff at the check-in counter and ask if there's food on the plane. Maybe you can't go a long time without food? Tell them this and vaguely hint that you'd like to get upgraded.</p> <p>You could also try the &quot;I've never flown first class and I've always wondered what it's like&quot; line in a last-ditch effort to join the more comfortable business passengers.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-frequent-flyer-programs-with-free-first-class-seat-upgrades?ref=seealso">Best Frequent Flyer Programs With Free First Class Seat Upgrades</a></p> <h2>3. Piggyback to the First Class Lounge</h2> <p>Every passenger in the first class lounge is allowed to have a guest. You could be that guest! Just hang out outside of the first class lounge and make a new friend just before they go through the doors. Ask them if you can be their guest and you can enjoy a wide variety of drinks and food... for free. If only you could piggyback your way into the first class cabin on the plane!</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-with-free-airport-lounge-access?ref=seealso">How to Get Free Airport Lounge Access</a></p> <h2>4. Use the My TSA App</h2> <p>Wait times can vary greatly depending on which airport you're flying out of and what time of day you're scheduled to depart. Check out the My TSA app on <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/my-tsa/id380200364?mt=8">Apple</a> and <a href="https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.dhs.tsa.mytsa&amp;hl=en">Android</a> to search current wait times at many airports around the world. There's no point in showing up at the airport three hours early if the security check lines will only take you 10 minutes. Conversely, you better be there extra early if the lines are going to take forever. This app can save you a lot of time and worry.</p> <h2>5. Fly Private</h2> <p>I know what you're thinking. Private flights are only for celebrities and rewards point hoarders, but these days that just isn't true. There's a new app called <a href="https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/jetsmarter-fly-on-private/id562937375?mt=8">JetSmarter</a> and it's being called the Uber of air travel. Some of the flights found on the app will still be way too expensive for the average traveler, but some are much cheaper than you might expect &mdash; like a flight from Houston to Arlington on a private jet with only seven other people for $365 per person. Talk about living large on a small budget!</p> <h2>Fly Smarter</h2> <p>Recent polls have shown that people tend to <a href="http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/travel/flights/2007-12-20-tsa-survey_N.htm">hate the TSA</a> as much as the IRS, while other polls show that passengers would be <a href="http://thehill.com/policy/transportation/236884-poll-passengers-willing-to-pay-higher-airport-fees">willing to pay more</a> for their ticket just to have a more enjoyable airport experience. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-credit-cards-that-offer-the-best-travel-perks?ref=seealso">Get Exclusive Travel Perks with These Credit Cards</a>)</p> <p>This is all to say that most people are not satisfied with the challenges associated with air travel. But now you're not most people! You can utilize these tips to make your flying experience as enjoyable as possible.</p> <p>You'll never fully avoid the hassle and annoyance of the TSA, security checks, and airport line-ups, but at least you can minimize their negative effects now. Enjoy!</p> <p><em>Anything we've missed? Share you favorite airport travel tips in comments!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%20Smart%20Travel%20Hacks%20Only%20Frequent%20Flyers%20Know.jpg&amp;description=5%20Smart%20Travel%20Hacks%20Only%20Frequent%20Flyers%20Know" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Smart%20Travel%20Hacks%20Only%20Frequent%20Flyers%20Know.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-airline-perks-from-yesteryear-that-seem-unbelievable-today">10 Airline Perks From Yesteryear That Seem Unbelievable Today</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers">15 Airport Hacks From Professional Travelers</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel airports first class flying frequent flyers lines pre-check tsa upgrades vacation Mon, 02 May 2016 10:30:04 +0000 Nick Wharton 1693268 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Little-Known Ways to Save When Booking Spring Travel http://www.wisebread.com/6-little-known-ways-to-save-when-booking-spring-travel <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-little-known-ways-to-save-when-booking-spring-travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_on_vacation_000062041066.jpg" alt="Couple finding ways to save when booking spring travel" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>As the warmer weather finally starts to creep in, it's hard to not get excited about traveling this spring or summer. With the cheaper gas prices and lower overall airfare, it just might be a good year to finally book that family vacation you've been considering. Here are a few insider tips that'll help you stretch your travel dollar as far as possible. (See also:&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-ways-that-anyone-can-travel-for-free">7 Ways That Anyone Can Travel for Free</a>)</p> <h2>1. Book Airfare on a Tuesday</h2> <p>According to FareCompare.com, which helps travelers compare airfares to find the best deals, Tuesday around 3 p.m. EST is the best time to book a flight. They found that this is when many airlines release the majority of their sales, which then encourages other airlines to lower their fares to stay competitive. In contrast, try not to book airfare on a Friday morning as you'll end up paying&nbsp;<a href="http://www.hopper.com/articles/2450/does-time-of-day-matter-when-booking-flights">3% more for fares</a> on average.</p> <h2>2. Fly Out on a Tuesday or Wednesday</h2> <p>If you can be flexible in terms of the day you fly out, you can definitely save some money. According to Airfarewatchdog.com, if you can fly out on a Tuesday or Wednesday you'll find lower overall airfares. While not a perfect science, these two days <em>usually </em>yield lower airfares. For example, CheapAir.com found the difference between a Sunday round-trip flight and a Tuesday round-trip flight to be $58 on average. Also, when booking air travel for a week-long vacation, book Tuesday-Tuesday or Wednesday-Wednesday, as it is by far the cheapest way to fly.</p> <h2>3. Book Hotels Directly This Year</h2> <p>Online travel sites like Expedia and Hotels.com charge hotel chains a hefty 15% fee for an online booking. As a result, many hotels are trying to avoid this booking fee and are willing to negotiate a deal with potential travelers who call them directly. For example, if the Expedia rate is $100 a night, call the hotel and ask politely if they can beat that rate. Since the hotel has to pay around $15 to Expedia, they'll often give you the room for $90/night. It's an extra $5 in their pocket and they've made you a happy camper in the process.</p> <h2>4. Vacation Where the Best Deals Are</h2> <p>Clark Howard is one of my favorite frugal gurus. Every year he takes his staff on a big trip, and how he selects the destination is pure genius. He goes online and figures out what destination currently has the best travel deals, and that's where he takes everyone. By booking travel this way, he has visited every continent except Antarctica and every state except North Dakota. I love his perspective on this travel tip: &quot;I don't pick a destination that I have to go to. I wait for a deal somewhere, buy the deal, and then figure out why I want to go there.&quot; To make it happen, Howard suggest using&nbsp;<a href="http://www.kayak.com/explore/">Kayak Explore</a> as it lets you find the best airfare deals for your specific budget.</p> <h2>5. VRBO and Airbnb &quot;Last-Minute&quot; Hack</h2> <p>It's pretty obvious that vacation homeowners using VRBO and Airbnb to rent their place don't make a cent if their place lies empty for the weekend. Because of this, many owners are willing to lower their rate a little bit for last-minute travelers. By last-minute, I'm talking about those trying to book a place within a week of arrival. So the next time you attempt to plan a last-minute getaway, consider politely asking for a 15%&ndash;20% discount when using either website. You stand a great chance of negotiating a deal.</p> <h2>6. Hotel Check-In Trick</h2> <p>Have you ever wondered if it's still possible to get a room upgrade when checking into a hotel? According to many hotel employees, you can absolutely still do it, and slipping the front desk attendant a $20 bill is still highly acceptable. There's almost always a better room available, or cool upgrades like free movies, free room service, or late checkout &mdash; and sending an Andrew Jackson across the counter is a great way to make it happen.</p> <p>Also, the same hotel employees share that online booking sites like Expedia, Hotwire, and Orbitz are often going to get you the worst rooms available. The reason is because hotels see these guest as &quot;non-loyal&quot; travelers simply looking for a really low rate. They're not going to give you the rooms with the best views and overall features.</p> <p><em>How do you ensure a great deal when booking your travel plans?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-little-known-ways-to-save-when-booking-spring-travel&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%20Little-Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20When%20Booking%20Spring%20Travel.jpg&amp;description=6%20Little-Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20When%20Booking%20Spring%20Travel" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Little-Known%20Ways%20to%20Save%20When%20Booking%20Spring%20Travel.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/kyle-james">Kyle James</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-little-known-ways-to-save-when-booking-spring-travel">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/11-spring-break-budget-busters-to-avoid">11 Spring Break Budget Busters to Avoid</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/14-things-you-can-do-now-to-prep-for-your-best-summer-ever">14 Things You Can Do Now to Prep for Your Best Summer Ever</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">10 Ways to Get Free (or Almost Free) Airline Tickets</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel Airfare flying holiday hotel hacks spring break summer vacation trips Thu, 10 Mar 2016 11:00:06 +0000 Kyle James 1670417 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000052282084_1.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>I've been traveling and hacking flights since 2008, spending nearly eight years researching and finding secret methods to save money, earn points, and fly for free. These effective and easy-to-use tricks have saved me thousands of dollars over the years and now they can do the same for you.</p> <h2>1. Use Google Flights</h2> <p>If there ever was a single flight booking engine to rule them all, it would be <a href="https://www.google.com/flights/">Google Flights</a>. This incredible website will revolutionize the way you book flights and it can save you a ton of money along the way. Let's go over some of the main features of this booking site that blows others like it out of the water.</p> <h3>Two Months of Fares</h3> <p>A frequent flyer knows that there are always cheaper days of the week and times of the month to fly. Google Flights simplifies your fare search by showing you a calendar with two full months of fares. There's even a handy bar graph that makes it easy to see which day is the cheapest. I have found flights for nearly half price just by using this tool and flying on the right day of the month!</p> <h3>Destination Region, Not Just Destination City</h3> <p>Sometimes you want to go to Europe, but you want to be spontaneous. You'll fly to any city as long as it's cheap. Well, Google Flights will be your new best friend. Instead of having to input a destination city, you can input a destination region (ie: Europe). You can then open a map view of the entire continent which shows airfares on every major city and airport. With this trick, I found that I could fly to Paris for $150 less than if I flew to London on the same day. Using traditional methods of flight search, you'd have to separately search each city in Europe to find the cheapest flight and this could potentially take hours.</p> <h3>Happiness Factors</h3> <p>A good deal on a flight ticket is only a good deal if you're comfortable while you're in the air. Google has teamed up with Routehappy to include &quot;Happiness Factors&quot; in their search results. Now you can see if there is food, USB power outlets, TVs, video on demand, and Wi-Fi on your flight. The factors are shown using easy to spot icons right next to the fares in search results. You can even see how many inches of legroom you'll have!</p> <h3>Best Flight Recommendation</h3> <p>Google takes the guesswork out of choosing flights. Sometimes, customers are blinded by a cheap deal and they fail to notice that there is a 45-hour layover in Delaware. For an extra $40 you could have flown direct! Google automatically calculates the best flight for you based on a good balance of price and transit time. Brilliant. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use?ref=seealso">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a>)</p> <h2>2. Clear Your Cache</h2> <p>This is a big one, everybody! Have you ever noticed that when you return to check the cost of your flight day after day, the price just keeps going up? This is not a coincidence. Flight booking engines and airline websites store cookies in your browser. These cookies can monitor your browsing habits and they'll know when you return to their website to check flight costs again and again. They will then jack the price up to urge you to buy! It sounds criminal, doesn't it? Well it's not illegal and it happens all of the time on pretty much every booking website. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/4-secrets-to-getting-the-lowest-rate-from-travel-websites?ref=seealso">4 Secrets to Getting the Lowest Rate From Travel Websites</a>)</p> <p>To avoid getting charged extra every time you book a flight, simply clear your browser cache before booking anything online, or if you use Google Chrome as your browser, simply hit control-shift-N to open an &quot;incognito&quot; window which ensures cookie-free browsing.</p> <p>Note: Clearing the cache is different for every browser, here are instructions for the most common ones: <a href="https://support.google.com/chromebook/answer/183083?hl=en">Google Chrome</a>, <a href="http://agsci.psu.edu/it/how-to/clear-internet-explorer-8-ie8-browsing-history-cache">Internet Explorer</a>, <a href="https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/delete-cookies-remove-info-websites-stored">Firefox</a>, and <a href="https://guides.instructure.com/m/4214/l/334964-how-do-i-clear-my-browser-cache-on-a-mac">Safari</a>.</p> <p>I recently booked a flight from Guatemala to Cuba and I noticed that each day before booking, the price kept going up. Luckily I utilized this simple hack and voila! The price magically went back down and I saved $250 on two tickets! Don't believe me? Check out the split image below. The bottom half is the flight before clearing the browser cache and the top half is the exact same flight, booked 10 minutes later using &quot;incognito&quot; mode.</p> <p><img width="605" height="456" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5171/flight%20prices.jpg" /></p> <p>If you didn't know about this hack before, then you've probably overpaid for pretty much every flight you've ever taken. Next time you book a flight, make sure you clear your cache or shop &quot;incognito.&quot;</p> <h2>3. Get Bumped</h2> <p>Is saving big money on flights not good enough for you? You want to <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-ways-to-get-free-or-almost-free-airline-tickets">fly for free</a>? No problem. You can get free flight vouchers so you don't have to pay for your future airfare at all. It's called &quot;getting bumped.&quot;</p> <p>Here's how it works: These days, there are so many people flying that airlines overbook their flights and bank on the fact that not everyone will show up to the gates come check-in time. Sometimes this works for them and they can overbook flights without a hitch, but other times they have to ask some passengers if they wouldn't mind taking the next scheduled flight instead. These passengers are &quot;getting bumped.&quot;</p> <p>Why is &quot;getting bumped&quot; such an awesome hack? Because if you get bumped, you'll be flown to your destination on the next scheduled flight, plus you'll receive a free flight voucher for your next holiday! That's right, your next flight will be free.</p> <p>But you shouldn't just cross your fingers and hope to get bumped. There are three things that you should do to better your chances.</p> <h3>Choose a Popular Flight</h3> <p>The more popular the flight route, the more likely it will be that the airline needs to bump passengers. Choose a destination city that is popular, and fly on the busiest day possible (usually Monday mornings, Friday afternoons, and around holidays).</p> <h3>Pack Light</h3> <p>Airline staff will try to choose the most convenient candidates for bump passengers. If they have to go fetch your bag from under the plane, they probably won't pick you. If you want to get bumped, try to pack only carry-on luggage.</p> <h3>Show Up Extra Early and Volunteer</h3> <p>Head to the check-in counter right when it opens and have a big smile on your face. Politely mention to the agent that you're in no rush, and you'd have no problem volunteering to take the next flight if they need you to.</p> <p>Now you just sit and wait with your fingers crossed. This hack may not work every time, but you can definitely get a few free flights if you keep trying.</p> <h2>4. Book at the Right Time</h2> <p>The &quot;right time to book&quot; has been a debate amongst frequent flyers since the invention of commercial air travel. How long before your departure date should you start shopping for flights? Are last-minute deals the best or is it better to plan in advance to get early bird discounts?</p> <p>According to a 2013 study conducted by CheapAir.com, the <a href="http://www.cheapair.com/blog/travel-tips/when-should-you-buy-your-airline-ticket-heres-what-our-data-has-to-say/">optimal time to book flights</a> is approximately 48 days (about seven weeks) before departure. The study also claimed that most airlines will charge hefty premiums for late bookings (within 14 days of departure) and for early bookings (more than five months in advance).</p> <h2>5. Become &quot;Cancellation Protected&quot;</h2> <p>Many flight booking engines have pretty strict flight cancellation policies that are often separate from the airline's policies. Sometimes you have to cancel your flight for unforeseen reasons and if you booked with an online booking site, you may be out of luck and out of money.</p> <p>Instead, find the flight using your favorite booking engine, get the flight number and date of the cheapest fare, and then go straight your chosen airline's website to book it. This way, you'll have a better chance of getting at least some kind of refund if you have to cancel down the road.</p> <p>Keep in mind, you can get refunds on many <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-get-a-refund-when-something-is-non-refundable">&quot;non-refundable&quot; purchases</a> if you know how to ask.</p> <h2>6. Use Your Best Travel Rewards Credit Card</h2> <p>There's no reason why anyone should book travel without reaping the benefits of travel rewards and air miles from their favorite credit cards. Whenever you're paying for a holiday, trip or vacation, make sure that you're using your <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">best travel rewards credit card</a>.</p> <p>Find the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-travel-rewards-credit-cards-really-work">best card for your travel preferences</a>, rack up your points and miles, and then <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-steps-to-getting-a-free-or-close-to-free-vacation-in-9-months-or-less-with-credit-cards">redeem them for a free vacatio</a>n!&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">If you're a loyal flyer on a particular airline, a </span><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-co-branded-airline-credit-cards?ref=internal" style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">co-branded airline card</a><span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;"> will get you extra travel perks like priority boarding and discounts off in-flight purchases.</span></p> <h2>7. Use the Flight+Hotel or Flight+Rental Tab</h2> <p>You've probably seen that little tab at the top of flight booking websites that says Flight+Hotel or Flight+Car Rental. It looks like it's just an aggressive upsell, trying to get you to spend more money than you really want to, but it turns out, there are huge savings hidden beneath that tab.</p> <p>Flight booking engines offer customers big discounts on their flights, hotels, and car rental if they book them all together. Even if you don't want to rent a car for the duration of your holiday, give this little hack a try.</p> <p>In my sample booking, the cheapest flight from Toronto to London in July of 2015 was $1,524. I then searched the same flight using the tab on the British Airways website that says &quot;Flight+Car&quot; and found it for just $1,444 including a rental for the duration of the one week holiday. That's $80 less for the flight, plus a free rental car.</p> <h2>8. Pack Your Stuff to Avoid Extra Baggage Fees</h2> <p>Everyone wants to avoid going over the baggage allowance on flights. It's a good idea to always carry the maximum allowed size for your carry-on luggage, plus a purse, and a laptop bag. Most airlines allow all of these items as carry-ons and having all three is a loophole that will help you to avoid expensive fees at check-in. (You can sometimes sneak on with a plastic grocery bag as well!)</p> <p>If that nasty scale at the check-in counter is calling your luggage fat, take the heaviest things out and put them in your purse or daypack. Toss some things in the laptop bag and distribute the weight into your carry-ons so that you don't have to pay an extra cent for heavy checked luggage.</p> <p>Bonus hack: If you're traveling with golf clubs, stuff the golf bag with as much clothing as you can to lighten your other checked bag and avoid overweight charges. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-secrets-from-the-worlds-most-frugal-frequent-travelers?ref=seealso">25 Secrets From the World's Most Frugal Frequent Travelers</a>)</p> <h2>9. Ask to Sit Close to the Emergency Exit</h2> <p>On most airlines, you are charged extra if you request the emergency exit seats because they have twice the leg room, but you can often get them for free. When you check in for your next flight, request that your seat is <em>close to</em> the nearest emergency exit row. This is free.</p> <p>As soon as the plane doors are sealed and you see an empty emergency exit seat, switch over to it. Because passengers are charged extra if they request exit seats before departure, there are usually a couple of empty ones available and once the plane is sealed, you don't have to pay to move into them.</p> <p>See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-airport-hacks-from-professional-travelers?ref=seealso">15 Airport Hacks From Expert Travelers</a></p> <h2>10. Use the Multi-City Tab</h2> <p>Basically, the Multi-City tab can be found on almost all booking sites and it gives customers access to secret discounts for taking multiple flights at the same time. In my case, I needed to fly from Guatemala City to Havana and then on to San Jose, Costa Rica three weeks later. If I were to book these flights separately, they would have cost me $938, but booking the same trip using the Multi-City tab only cost me $710. That's a savings of $218. Use this tab when you're planning multiple flights in a specific time frame and you can save a lot of money.</p> <p><em>Do you know of some money saving flight hacks that I missed? Please share them with the world in the comments below!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this article? Pin it!&nbsp;</h2> <p style="text-align: center;"><a data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-count="above" data-pin-tall="true" href="https://www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%2520Flight%2520Booking%2520Hacks%2520to%2520Save%2520You%2520Hundreds.jpg&amp;description=10%20Flight%20Booking%20Hacks%20to%20Save%20You%20Hundreds"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Flight%20Booking%20Hacks%20to%20Save%20You%20Hundreds.jpg" width="250" height="374" align="middle" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/nick-wharton">Nick Wharton</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-that-transfer-points-to-airline-miles">5 Best Credit Cards that Transfer Points to Airline Miles</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-your-escape-with-these-14-affordable-weekend-getaways">Make Your Escape With These 14 Affordable Weekend Getaways</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel airline miles airline tickets credit cards flight booking flying travel vacation Mon, 07 Sep 2015 11:00:35 +0000 Nick Wharton 1548205 at http://www.wisebread.com Best Money Tips: Smart Ways to Save on Air Travel http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-smart-ways-to-save-on-air-travel <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/best-money-tips-smart-ways-to-save-on-air-travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_flight_000018947804.jpg" alt="Woman finding ways to save money on air travel" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="141" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Welcome to Wise Bread's <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/topic/best-money-tips">Best Money Tips</a> Roundup! Today we found some great articles on smart ways to save on air travel, habits of a pro organizer, and items that are cheaper at the dollar store than at Walmart.</p> <h2>Top 5 Articles</h2> <p><a href="http://www.livingwellspendingless.com/2015/06/29/12-smart-ways-save-air-travel/">12 Smart Ways to Save on Air Travel</a> &mdash; You can save on tickets if you schedule a longer layover. Use this extra time to relax, get some work done, or check out your layover city! [Living Well Spending Less]</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Organizing-Tips-From-Professional-37761620">5 Lifesaving Habits of a Real-Life Professional Organizer</a> &mdash; Dedicate about 10 minutes every night to tidying your desk and coffee table, folding throw blankets, starting the dishwasher &mdash; small clean-up tasks that will give you a fresh start the next morning. [PopSugar Smart Living]</p> <p><a href="http://www.cheapism.com/blog/3669/walmart-vs-dollar-stores">28 Items Cheaper at the Dollar Store Than at Walmart</a> &mdash; Dollar Tree is the place to go for cotton swabs, bandages, and hand sanitizer. [Cheapism]</p> <p><a href="http://parentingsquad.com/5-ways-to-have-4th-of-july-fun-at-home">5 Ways to Have 4th of July Fun at Home</a> &mdash; Dress up the kids in red, white, and blue, and march around in their own mini-parade complete with waving flags or musical instruments. [Parenting Squad]</p> <p><a href="http://phroogal.com/blog/9-easy-meal-prep-ideas-to-save-time-and-money/">9 Easy Meal Prep Ideas to Save Time and Money</a> &mdash; Smoothies are easy, delicious, and a great way to use up produce. Make it even easier by pre-portioning the ingredients into a small plastic bag. [Phroogal Blog]</p> <h2>Other Essential Reading</h2> <p><a href="http://moneysmartlife.com/i-dont-have-much-money-can-i-still-invest/">I Don&rsquo;t Have Much Money &ndash; Can I Still Invest?</a> &mdash; Betterment is a good option if you're completely new to investing, and you only need to commit to contributing $100 a month to get started. [Money Smart Life]</p> <p><a href="http://canadianfinanceblog.com/10-money-saving-tips/">10 Simple Money Saving Tips</a> &mdash; Like to dine out? Get a copy of your local Entertainment Book for 2-for-1 deals at restaurants in your area. [Canadian Finance Blog]</p> <p><a href="http://moneyning.com/housing/how-to-avoid-home-buyers-remorse-before-its-too-late/">How to Avoid Home Buyer&rsquo;s Remorse Before it&rsquo;s Too Late</a> &mdash; Make a list of must-haves before you start looking at houses. This list will likely change as you&nbsp;consider different properties, but it will help you prioritize your needs vs. wants. [MoneyNing]</p> <p><a href="http://www.csmonitor.com/Business/Saving-Money/2015/0629/How-to-beat-the-heat-without-hurting-your-budget">How to beat the heat without hurting your budget</a> &mdash; Install a fan in your attic to keep hot air from amassing and heating up your upper floors. [The Monitor]</p> <p><a href="https://www.listenmoneymatters.com/how-to-paleo-on-a-budget/">How To Paleo On A Budget</a> &mdash; Switching to a paleo diet? You can find a lot of good produce and other foods at a farmer's market, but the prices will likely be cheaper at a farm stand or ethnic market without sacrificing quality. [Listen Money Matters]</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/amy-lu">Amy Lu</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/best-money-tips-smart-ways-to-save-on-air-travel">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel best money tips flying Wed, 01 Jul 2015 19:00:11 +0000 Amy Lu 1475623 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Fun, Creative Uses for Airline Miles http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-creative-uses-for-airline-miles <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-fun-creative-uses-for-airline-miles" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/woman_happy_000041408032.jpg" alt="Woman happy with using airline miles in cool ways" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Airline miles. Most of us have a few ways of racking them up, either through credit cards, loyalty clubs, or frequent flyer programs. Depending on which way you earn your miles, they can be worth <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/comparing-miles-which-airline-loyalty-program-is-better">several cents per mile</a>, with one cent per mile being the average.</p> <p>The question is, what do you do with all those miles once you've collected a bunch? After all, 100,000 miles is a cool $1000, and can be acquired quickly with a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">double miles card</a> and some business and personal trips.</p> <h2>1. Do Something Thrilling</h2> <p>How do you fancy doing a tandem skydive? What about doing three laps in a stock car or Indy race? Maybe a hot air balloon ride, fighter pilot experience, or scuba diving is your thing. Airline miles can now be turned into memories you will never forget. Some of them run as little as 10,000-11,000 miles, and others, they're over 650,000 miles. It all depends on how much of your breath you want taken away. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-adventurous-things-you-should-do-before-you-die?ref=seealso">15 Adventurous Things You Should Do Before You Die</a>)</p> <h2>2. Turn Them Into Magazines</h2> <p>If you really want to stretch your airline miles, why not turn a few thousand in for some subscriptions to big magazines and newspapers? The price is so cheap, it's almost free. Many annual magazine subscriptions are under 2,000 miles, or $20. When you consider the average price at the newsstand is $4-$5, that's a steal. Newspapers also take part, and you can use local papers. Simply enter your zip code, and you'll get airline mile quotes for your local papers, usually for 13 weeks and above.</p> <h2>3. Donate to Charity</h2> <p>If you're feeling philanthropic, airline rewards can easily be donated to a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-charitable-donations-that-do-the-most-good">whole host of charities</a>. It's not limited to the big ones, but some of the smallest charities in your local area. Just enter your zip code, and the area of interest you'd like to help out with. The miles will be turned into cash donations, and of course, they are tax deductible.</p> <h2>4. Get the Latest Music, Movies, and TV Series</h2> <p>Airline miles are now so flexible, you can use them on digital media downloads. Whether it's the latest albums, songs, eBooks, audiobooks, movies, or TV series, you can easily exchange the miles you have accrued for hours and hours of great entertainment. Just check out the offers page of your airline miles website.</p> <h2>5. Bid in Auctions</h2> <p>Most of the airline miles reward sites have an auctions section now. For instance, United is currently accepting mileage bids on VIP experiences with sports stars, and tickets for opening night at Doctor Zhivago on Broadway. Of course, if you don't win, you don't lose the miles, so you can bid again on something else. It's quite an invigorating way to use the miles.</p> <h2>6. Upgrade to Business or First Class</h2> <p>It can cost many thousands of dollars to buy a first class ticket to Europe. But when you use your miles, it's nowhere near as expensive. For instance, <a href="http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/2014/09/19/many-miles-take/">take a quick look at this chart</a>. A typical upgrade to business class, from economy, is coming in at around 50,000 miles. You can take your long haul flight from a sardine can experience, to something much more pleasurable indeed. American Airlines <a href="http://www.aa.com/i18n/AAdvantage/redeemMiles/mileage-upgrade-chart.jsp">charges just 25,000</a> miles to go from a full fare ticket to a business seat.</p> <h2>7. Get a Better Hotel Room</h2> <p>Airline miles aren't just for air travel. Most miles you accrue can be transferred to hotel loyalty programs, be it Starwood Preferred Guest, Hilton HHonors, or Marriott Rewards. So, next time you check in, see if you can use some of your miles to get a much better room. It can cost as little as 6,000 miles to go from a standard room to a very fancy suite.</p> <h2>8. Take a Cruise</h2> <p>Turn your award miles into another vacation, at very little cost to you. These days, you can redeem your airline miles for tickets to cruise lines including Norwegian, Royal, Celebrity, Carnival, and Princess. And the cost? How about four nights in the Bahamas for under 25,000 miles? In fact, the average cost of a night on board a cruise ship is between 9,000 and 10,000 points. That's cheaper than a mediocre hotel room in the mid-west.</p> <h2>9. Pay Off Your Credit Card</h2> <p>Some credit cards have programs that can give you cash credits to your statement or even cold hard cash. With the former, you make travel related purchases with your credit card, and then use your miles to put that money back on the card at a later date. It's basically like using your miles to go shopping without worrying about using points to redeem flights or stays..</p> <h2>10. Get Cool Merchandise</h2> <p>What kind of cool stuff? Well, what do you want? Airline miles can be turned into great purchases, with categories including apparel, accessories, automotive, tools, baby gear, electronics, gadgets, home and garden, sports, outdoors, toys, collectibles, and more. I recently used rewards to get a fantastic hybrid coffee maker that uses both pods and regular filters. It's also great fun to browse. Of course, make sure you're not paying over the MSRP for anything. Some items are marked up considerably. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-you-wasting-your-credit-card-rewards-on-one-of-these-stupid-things?ref=seealso">Are You Wasting Your Credit Card Rewards on One of These Stupid Things?</a>)</p> <p><em>Now, have you done something cool with your airline miles that isn't on this list? Let us know. </em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F10-fun-creative-uses-for-airline-miles&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F10%20Fun%2C%20Creative%20Uses%20for%20Airline%20Miles.jpg&amp;description=10%20Fun%2C%20Creative%20Uses%20for%20Airline%20Miles" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/10%20Fun%2C%20Creative%20Uses%20for%20Airline%20Miles.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-fun-creative-uses-for-airline-miles">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/9-simple-ways-to-save-on-hotel-stays">9 Simple Ways to Save on Hotel Stays</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-cheapest-way-to-fly-to-europe">The Cheapest Way to Fly to Europe</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel airline miles flying frequent flyers loyalty clubs rewards programs Thu, 16 Apr 2015 09:00:08 +0000 Paul Michael 1386037 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Airline Perks From Yesteryear That Seem Unbelievable Today http://www.wisebread.com/10-airline-perks-from-yesteryear-that-seem-unbelievable-today <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-airline-perks-from-yesteryear-that-seem-unbelievable-today" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/first_class_000028836248.jpg" alt="Young couple taking advantage of airine perks" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've taken a flight recently, you've probably noticed just how much service has declined. In most cases, meals are no longer free. Checked bags cost money. You have to pay for a movie or TV show, and sometimes the headphones too. Beer, wine, and spirits are extra. Plus, if you're flying coach, you're squished together like sardines. And let's not forget about the horrendous waiting times to get through security checkpoints. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/travel-perks-you-didnt-know-your-credit-card-had?ref=seealso">12 Travel Perks You Didn't Know Your Credit Card Had</a>)</p> <p>But it wasn't always this way. Here are 10 airline perks from yesteryear that'll have you wishing we were back in the 20th century.</p> <h2>1. Lobster Was on the Menu</h2> <p>Ahh, the first class menu, right? Nope. Full meals, with lobster as an option, were served to everyone. This was done during the highly competitive days of the late 1960s and early 1970s, when flights were routinely taking off at less than half of capacity. In an effort to win customers, airlines started offering more luxurious perks for free. Lobster was one such perk, and although it may not have been five-star quality, it was way better than the free bag of pretzels you get today.</p> <h2>2. Everyone Had More Legroom</h2> <p>In an effort to squeeze more money out of each flight, airlines have started making the seats closer together. But back in the 1950s, people in economy class (or coach) had three to six inches of additional legroom. And it wasn't something you paid extra for, like you do today.</p> <h2>3. You Could Drink for Free</h2> <p>Alcohol is still free for those traveling in first class. But back in the day, everyone was served free drinks for the duration of the flight. If you want to get tipsy on board these days, you'll have to prepare your wallet for take-off, too.</p> <h2>4. You Could Buy a Lifetime First-Class Pass</h2> <p>Well, let's be realistic. Few of us could ever afford to drop the $250,000 needed for a lifetime of free flights in first class. But for those who had the money, it became a nightmare for the airline. The <a href="http://business.time.com/2012/05/08/the-250000-airline-pass-that-was-worth-every-penny/">AAirpass, from American Airlines</a>, was offered in the 1980s. It was one of those &quot;all-you-can-fly&quot; offers that seemed like a killer deal for the airlines. However, they soon realized that some people do an awful lot of flying. And worse still, some travelers were racking up over $125,000 in flights in less than one month. American Airlines abandoned this perk, for obvious reasons. Those who have one can still use it, and whenever they book, they get an amazing flight for absolutely nothing.</p> <h2>5. New York to London Took 2 Hours and 53 Minutes</h2> <p>Some people say the greatest perk you can ever get is a fast flight. And no flights were faster than those on the British Airways Concorde. It could travel at twice the speed of sound, or around 1350 mph, which is more than double the speed of the typical subsonic aircraft. Of course, this perk came at a cost &mdash; somewhere between $12,000 and $20,000 per ticket. For those used to shelling out a lot of money to travel first class, it was a justifiable expense in order to get there very quickly. Sadly, due to an accident in 2000, and increasing overhead costs, the fleet of Concordes was retired from service. Will we ever see the perk of supersonic travel again? You can count on it&hellip;but don't hold your breath for anytime soon.</p> <h2>6. Smoking Was Allowed on Board</h2> <p>This is a perk to some, and an utter nightmare to others (including myself). As a non-smoker, I'm very happy that smoking is not allowed on airlines any more. But, during the golden age, you could smoke cigarettes, pipes, and cigars at any time other than take off and landing. After a while, the cabins became dedicated to smoking, or non-smoking&hellip;which is why this <a href="https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0tR4jBtdROE&amp;t=74">joke from &quot;Airplane!</a>&quot; worked so well in its day.</p> <h2>7. Getting to the Plane Was a Breeze</h2> <p>Forget long security lines. Forget fishing around for ID. Back in the day, you could saunter up to the airport 30 minutes before takeoff, and get to your seat without any worries of missing the plane. In fact, back then you didn't even need a ticket to get to the departure gate. You could sit around with friends and family, and they could hug you goodbye just minutes before the doors were closed. Airline security concerns have made those benefits a thing of the past.</p> <h2>8. There Were No Charges for Extra Luggage</h2> <p>We all know about charges for carry-ons and checked luggage. Back in the day, that was unheard of. In fact, you could bring whatever you wanted onto the plane, and you could also bring as much as you wanted. Some people had four or five carry-ons, and three or four large suitcases. As the flights often weren't booked to capacity, there was always plenty of room.</p> <h2>9. Headache? There Was a Pill for That</h2> <p>If you've ever had a headache on a flight, you know there's absolutely no point in asking the flight attendant for medicine. Back in the late 1980s, airline lawyers made sure no medicines could be handed out by the flight crew. But before then, it was perfectly acceptable to get your headache pills and allergy meds from your steward or stewardess. They all carried little packets of Tylenol and Advil for those times when the screaming kids made life hell.</p> <h2>10. You Could Lay Across a Row of Seats</h2> <p>Today, if you're very lucky, you might get a seat with no-one sitting next to you. That is rare. Often, flights are overbooked, and occasionally people are even asked to give up their tickets and take a later flight. But in those heady days of flying &mdash; heck, even just 15 years ago &mdash; some flights were less than half full. It was not uncommon to have an entire row of four or five seats to yourself on international flights, and you could relax across them all, using the free blankets and pillow provided.</p> <p><em>Now&hellip;do you remember an awesome flying perk from yesteryear? Tell us about it. </em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/paul-michael">Paul Michael</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-airline-perks-from-yesteryear-that-seem-unbelievable-today">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-travel-hacks-that-will-save-time-money-and-your-sanity">23 Travel Hacks That Will Save Time, Money, and Your Sanity</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-airlines-with-the-best-customer-service">5 Airlines With the Best Customer Service</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel airlines airports first class flying perks Mon, 30 Mar 2015 15:00:12 +0000 Paul Michael 1359564 at http://www.wisebread.com 7 Reasons You Should Check Your Luggage http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/couple_travel_000027580182.jpg" alt="Couple with suitcase walking through airport" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Several years ago, many airlines started charging fees for everything &mdash; including fees for checked luggage &mdash; and many travelers started doing whatever they had to do not to check a bag. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money?ref=seealso">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Saves You Time and Money</a>)</p> <p>I get that. I really do. However, I don't think that saving the money for the bag fee is always worth it. In fact, unless I have some compelling reason not to, I usually check my bags. Here's why.</p> <h2>1. Getting Around is a Breeze</h2> <p>Have you ever worn leg shackles? If you've toted a bunch of luggage around an airport, you know what it's like.</p> <p>Seriously, trekking a carry-on around an airport can be hellish. It sounds okay, but then you find yourself making a third trip to the bathroom, complete with suitcase and personal items, and all of a sudden it's like managing a hundred pound weight. For vastly easier movement around the airport, check that ball and chain.</p> <h2>2. Free up Your Layover</h2> <p>Layovers can be fun or stressful, depending on how much time you have. In my opinion, they're always easier without a carry-on suitcase.</p> <p>If you have to run to your next flight, you can do it without the burden of the bag. And if you have some time to enjoy yourself, you can get some food or have a drink without keeping constant vigilance over your few possessions.</p> <p>Yes, there's always a chance your bag might not make it onto your connecting flight. But in my experience, the chances of that happening are pretty small, and, when it has, I usually wound up with an email letting me know before I even had to ask. Then they delivered it to my destination, and it wasn't a big deal.</p> <h2>3. Stop Messing With Those Tiny Bottles</h2> <p>If you don't mind transferring miniscule amounts of shampoo, conditioner, body wash, and any other useful fluids to carry-on compatible bottles, then by all means don't check your bag. But if you're like me and that process is tedious and painful, avoid it by just checking the thing already.</p> <p>Not only is transferring the liquids always a mess (and mine don't come prepackaged in tiny bottles), but there's often not enough in that bottle for the entire trip. So I make a mess and then I have to go shopping anyway. I'd rather take the whole bottle and check the bag.</p> <h2>4. Bring as Much as You Want &mdash; There and Back</h2> <p>Minimalistic packing is cool, if that's the way you roll. But if you like to have options, you're traveling to several different climates, or you have a lot of items you might need, it's a royal pain.</p> <p>When you check a bag, you can bring a lot more stuff. I don't advocate traveling with stuff just to travel with stuff, but I do think your trip will be a lot more enjoyable if you are able to bring all of the things that you want to bring. If that's more than fits into a carry-on, use a bigger bag and check it.</p> <h2>5. Avoid Injury</h2> <p>I have tweaked both my neck and my shoulder lugging too much stuff around an airport. Not only was that painful, but then I had to continue carrying my bags until I got to my destination. Even though I was hurt, there wasn't another good option because I'd already decided not to check the bags.</p> <p>Even if you don't do yourself serious injury, schlepping stuff like that fatigues your muscles. If you want to be more rested when you get to your destination, check your bags.</p> <h2>6. Offer Courtesy to Fellow Passengers</h2> <p>People with a lot of luggage always seem more stressed. It makes sense: They have more to keep track of, and it's harder for them to move around and do the things they need to do. Often, their stress means that they end up being unkind to other passengers.</p> <p>Most of the arguments or rudeness I've overheard at airports have had to do with carry-on luggage. Someone rolls a bag over someone else's toes. There's no more room in the overhead bin. One person opens a bin and someone else's bag falls out. It happens. And you can avoid it all by checking your bags.</p> <h2>7. No Overhead Bin Awkwardness</h2> <p>Speaking of overhead bins&hellip;they seem specifically designed to produce awkward situations. There's no room. Someone takes a spot in a bin that doesn't correspond to their row and someone else gets angry. Things fall out. You have to crawl over people to get your stuff down. Half the people on the plane can't lift their own stuff in or out.&nbsp;If you've ever been in one of these situations, you know it can get uncomfortable.&nbsp;Now, I love awkward situations in books and movies, but I hate to be in them myself. And I avoid a setup that seems likely to produce them when I check my bags.</p> <p>Whether these benefits outweigh the cost of checking your bag is up to you. For me, they almost always do.</p> <p><em>Do you check your bags? Why or why not?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F7%20Reasons%20You%20Should%20Check%20Your%20Luggage.jpg&amp;description=7%20Reasons%20You%20Should%20Check%20Your%20Luggage" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/7%20Reasons%20You%20Should%20Check%20Your%20Luggage.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/sarah-winfrey">Sarah Winfrey</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-reasons-you-should-check-your-luggage">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-7"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/make-flying-easy-the-ultimate-carry-on-packing-list">Make Flying Easy: The Ultimate Carry-On Packing List</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel carry-on check flying luggage Thu, 12 Mar 2015 09:00:08 +0000 Sarah Winfrey 1333248 at http://www.wisebread.com 5 Cheap Ways to Make Flying Coach Feel Like First Class http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000040393206_Large.jpg" alt="woman suitcase airport" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Hard seatbacks, no legroom, subpar snacks &mdash; flying coach can be less-than-cozy. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline?ref=seealso">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a>)</p> <p>Unfortunately, the average first-class ticket can be exorbitantly expensive in comparison. For many of us, it's just not worth it. But with a few simple tricks, you can make your back-of-the-plane flying experience feel more like that of those folks sitting up in the first few rows.</p> <h2>1. Choose Your Airline Wisely</h2> <p>Not all coach flights were created equal. JetBlue, for example, offers economy passengers an average of <a href="http://www.travelweekly.com/Travel-News/Airline-News/JetBlue-adds-bag-fee-and-shrinks-legroom-but-strikes-a-balance/">33 inches of legroom</a>, compared to the standard 31 inches. Plus, you can watch DirecTV for free. Southwest doesn't charge its economy flyers for blankets, pillows, and snacks. Virgin Atlantic has free in-flight comfort kits containing slippers, earplugs, and eye-masks. And on most Virgin flights, a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.virgin-atlantic.com/us/en/the-virgin-experience/economy/best-ever-meal.html">free welcome cocktail</a> is served before the three-course meal.</p> <h2>2. Select Your Seats With Care</h2> <p>Websites like <a href="http://www.seatguru.com/">SeatGuru</a> and <a href="http://seatexpert.com/">SeatExpert</a> were made to help you identify the roomiest, most comfortable seats on your flight. But don't be fooled &mdash; there's a lot more to consider than legroom. Distance to the nearest restroom or inflight entertainment screen are other factors that can impact the enjoyability of your flight.</p> <p>Simply look up the seating details for your specific flight and select one of the seats designated as most comfortable. Not all hope is lost if all the good seats are already taken, by the way. You can create an alert that will notify you if any of your prefered seats become available by using apps like <a href="http://www.expertflyer.com/free-program">ExpertFlyer</a>, which costs $4.99 monthly, although it won't actually execute a seat-swap on your behalf.</p> <p>Another option is TripIt Pro's <a href="https://www.tripit.com/seattracker">Seat Tracker</a>, which not only notifies you of preferred seat openings, but also allows you to confirm a seat change with the airline without ever leaving the app ($49 per year).</p> <h2>3. Invest in a Self-Inflating Seat Cushion</h2> <p>You can pretty easily go from feeling like you're sitting on a block of concrete to feeling like you're floating on a cloud by investing in a simple self-inflating seat cushion like the <a href="http://www.magellans.com/itemdy00.aspx?T1=MIF781">Luxe Self-Inflating Seat Cushion</a> ($41) by online travel gear consortium Magellan's. Sitting on this orthopedically designed cushion relieves pressure from your spinal cord, making for not only a more comfortable flight, but a more comfortable few next days.</p> <h2>4. Pack Your Own Personalized Comfort Kit</h2> <p>Melatonin to help you relax and fall asleep. Face wipes to keep you feeling fresh and clean. An iPod pre-loaded with a playlist of all your favorite travel songs. If your airline doesn't offer the little accoutrements that make all the difference between a comfortable flight and a dreadful one, pack them yourself. Other easy-to-pack items that make for a cozier in-flight experience include chocolates, fuzzy socks, eye drops, face lotion, and lots of bottled water.</p> <h2>5. Look the Part</h2> <p>If you want to enjoy a comfortable flight, dress for it. Leave the belts, heels, heavy jewelry, and neckties at home (or in your luggage) and opt instead for clothing that's soft, loose-fitting, and layered. Breathable fabrics will help you body adjust to warm or cool air cabin temperatures. Scarves, shawls, vests, sweatshirts, sweaters, and light jackets will keep you warm, plus they can double as blankets and pillows. And flat shoes you know won't make you limp or blister will be your saving grace as you stand patiently waiting to board.</p> <p><em>How do you make flying coach more comfortable?</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F5%20Cheap%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Coach%20Feel%20Like%20First%20Class%20(1).jpg&amp;description=5%20Cheap%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Coach%20Feel%20Like%20First%20Class" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/5%20Cheap%20Ways%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Coach%20Feel%20Like%20First%20Class%20%281%29.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/brittany-lyte">Brittany Lyte</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-cheap-ways-to-make-flying-coach-feel-like-first-class">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-hidden-comforts-to-consider-when-choosing-an-airline">5 Hidden Comforts to Consider When Choosing an Airline</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel air travel flying what to pack Wed, 18 Feb 2015 10:00:10 +0000 Brittany Lyte 1289845 at http://www.wisebread.com 24 Helpful Travel Hacks to Make Flying Stress-Free http://www.wisebread.com/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/businessman-airplane-cabin-Dollarphotoclub_69162482.jpg" alt="businessman airplane cabin" title="businessman airplane cabin" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Traveling on a plane around the holidays can be pretty stressful, especially if you're not a particular fan of flying as it is. If the bumps on your flight make you anxious &mdash; or worse, sick to your stomach &mdash; then follow a few simple tips that real flyers gave us on how to have a stress-free plane ride and travel experience in general. Try these tips and some <a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Airport-Hacks-35723248" helpful="" airport="" a="">, and you may even end up looking forward to your flight!</a>&nbsp;</p> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Airport-Hacks-35723248" helpful="" airport="" a="">RELATED: </a><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/How-Save-Money-Travel-36092909">Need Quick Cash For a Trip? 11 Easy Ways to Save</a></p> <h2>For Anxiety:</h2> <h3>1. Be Prepared</h3> <p>Pack completely the night before so that you can get a good night's sleep without worrying about last-minute details. Get to the airport earlier so you aren't stressed out about time.</p> <h3>2. Know Your Facts</h3> <p>Read plane crash statistics and facts, because, statistically speaking, crashes are extremely rare. Remind yourself that it's safer to fly than to drive, and research <a href="http://qz.com/216999/the-complete-guide-to-getting-over-your-fear-of-air-turbulence/">why you shouldn't be afraid of turbulence</a>.</p> <h3>3. Get Comfortable</h3> <p>Once you board the plane, do your best to get comfortable immediately. Adjust the air conditioning, have a snack or some water, read a book or magazine, take deep breaths, and try to relax.</p> <h3>4. Sleep</h3> <p>Consider taking Dramamine or an antianxiety medicine that may help you sleep. If you're sleeping, you can't be nervous!</p> <h3>5. Fly During the Day</h3> <p>Sometimes flying during the day (when possible) is less stressful because it can lessen the feeling of being closed in, which tends to be worse in the blackness of night.</p> <h3>6. Make Friends</h3> <p>If you are a really nervous flyer, then try striking up a conversation with a stranger and let them know that you are nervous. This can be a good conversation starter and a useful distraction &mdash; especially during takeoff. Even if the plane hits turbulence during the flight, that person can help reassure you.</p> <h3>7. Use Your Imagination</h3> <p>Imagine the plane landing safely on the ground every time you're nervous.</p> <h3>8. Enjoy a Beverage</h3> <p>A preflight cocktail (and if necessary, a midflight cocktail) can be helpful.</p> <h3>9. Expect Issues</h3> <p>Especially when traveling over the holidays, always expect delays. That way, you aren't stressed out, upset, or surprised when they inevitably happen. In fact, when and if your flight takes off on time, it will feel like a pretty big victory.</p> <h3>10. Make a Playlist</h3> <p><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Calming-Travel-Playlist-36216000">Listen to calming music</a> that will help you relax and sleep.</p> <h3>11. Distract Yourself</h3> <p>If takeoffs are what cause you the most anxiety, find a good podcast &mdash; something with a calming voice or something funny &mdash; and turn it up loud enough to drown out surrounding noise (but not loud enough to drive your neighbor nuts!), or play a game on your device that requires all of your attention (preferably with a timer) so that you can't look away and don't even notice the takeoff.</p> <h3>12. Block It All Out</h3> <p>Use noise-canceling headphones to block out noises and distract yourself with books, music, magazines, podcasts, movies, or TV shows.</p> <h3>13. Use Calming Techniques</h3> <p>Wear something around your wrist that you can jangle, pull, or snap, which can distract you just enough to get through the takeoff or turbulence.</p> <h3>14. Rationalize</h3> <p>Think about the fact that all the flight attendants in the plane fly nearly every day, and they are all perfectly fine.</p> <h2>For Motion Sickness:</h2> <h3>15. Ginger Is Key</h3> <p>If you are prone to motion sickness, drink ginger ale or eat ginger chews to soothe your stomach.</p> <h3>16. Eat Mints or Chew Gum</h3> <p>Sometimes the coolness and freshness of mints, mint gum, mint tea, or Tic Tacs can help relieve some nausea. Chewing gum can also help, but avoid sugarfree gum, which can upset your stomach. Cinnamon gum, like Big Red, is a good option.</p> <h3>17. Buy a Motion Sickness Band</h3> <p>A <a href="http://www.rei.com/product/783422/psi-bands-wristbands">motion sickness band</a> uses acupressure to stimulate your body's ability to fight off nausea.</p> <h3>18. Don't Read</h3> <p>Avoid any kind of reading, including any phone applications, when taking off and landing and during periods of turbulence.</p> <h3>19. Drink Water</h3> <p>Make sure to stay hydrated and avoid alcoholic beverages or coffee.</p> <h3>20. Take Dramamine</h3> <p>Try taking Dramamine about an hour before you will be on the plane.</p> <h3>21. Find a Fixed Point</h3> <p>If the takeoff, landing, or plane ride is bumpy, keep your eyes on the horizon so that you're focused on a fixed point.</p> <h3>22. Plan Ahead</h3> <p>For the 12 hours before you'll be traveling, stick to simple, easy-to-digest foods, avoiding lettuce, nuts, and any kind of dairy.</p> <h3>23. Breathe!</h3> <p>Try taking deep breaths, which will help to relax the muscles that tend to contract when you're feeling sick.</p> <h3>24. Bring a Fan</h3> <p>Pack a portable fan! Keeping yourself cool can do wonders for motion sickness.</p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F24%20Helpful%20Travel%20Hacks%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Stress-Free.jpg&amp;description=24%20Helpful%20Travel%20Hacks%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Stress-Free" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/24%20Helpful%20Travel%20Hacks%20to%20Make%20Flying%20Stress-Free.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-blog-teaser"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> From drop-off at the curb to touchdown at your destination, flying is filled with stress inducers. Take the edge off with some simple relaxers. </div> </div> </div> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p style="text-align:center;"><a style="border:none;" href="http://www.savvysugar.com"><img style="height:95px; width:300px" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u921/POPSUGARrgb.jpg" alt="" /></a></p> <p><em>This is a guest contribution from our friends at </em><a href="http://www.savvysugar.com/"><em>POPSUGAR Smart Living</em></a><em>. Check out more useful articles from this partner:</em></p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-2015-Travel-Destinations-US-36256485#photo-36256485">The 10 Places in the US You Absolutely Have to Visit in 2015</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Travel-Instagram-Accounts-36774978#photo-36774978">Feed Your Wanderlust With These 10 Stunning Instagram Accounts</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.popsugar.com/smart-living/Best-Things-Buy-Target-35385152">10 Things You Should Buy at Target</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/popsugar-smart-living">POPSUGAR Smart Living</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/24-helpful-travel-hacks-to-make-flying-stress-free">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-9"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-to-get-more-legroom-on-your-next-flight-for-free">5 Ways to Get More Legroom on Your Next Flight — for Free</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> General Tips Travel air travel fear flying stress Fri, 13 Feb 2015 10:00:10 +0000 POPSUGAR Smart Living 1286137 at http://www.wisebread.com The 8 Worst and Best Airport Buys http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/iStock_000015958604_Full.jpg" alt="woman airport" title="woman airport" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Your defenses are down when you enter the airport. You've got money to burn, time to waste, and you're in a state of euphoria because you'll be on a tropical beach in less than five hours. But, beware, ye of many impulses: Airport buys can make you broke if you're not careful. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/25-secrets-from-the-worlds-most-frugal-frequent-travelers?ref=seealso">25 Secrets From the World's Most Frugal Frequent Travelers</a>)</p> <p>So here's a list of what to watch out for at the airport (hint: most things), along with a couple items that are okay to dive into.</p> <h2>Worst Airport Buys</h2> <p>Plan ahead and you can avoid most of these pricey concourse purchases.</p> <h3>1. Personal Snacks and Drinks</h3> <p>While you should avoid bottled water altogether &mdash; it's bad for the environment and tap water is free, ya know &mdash; I understand that sometimes you need it. To avoid this impulse buy, add a water bottle to your packing list and keep it in your carry-on so you can fill it from the fountain when you're past security. If you forget your water bottle, remember this tip from Aaron Deutsch, founder of <a href="http://www.tellthem.co">TellThem.co</a>.</p> <p>&quot;If you need a bottle of water at the airport, my tip is to buy it from McDonald's, not the news shops&quot; he says. &quot;McDonald's typically charges $1.50 to $2 while the news stores charge $2.50 to 3.50. Small savings but nice!&quot;</p> <p>&quot;Healthy food is hard to find at the airport, and usually I bring what I need for the kids,&quot; adds Sandra Magura, author of the children's book <em><a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1564924122/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&amp;camp=1789&amp;creative=390957&amp;creativeASIN=1564924122&amp;linkCode=as2&amp;tag=wisbre03-20&amp;linkId=XEQGDXVVM2DKADWI">HippoDuck &mdash; Trouble at the Airport</a></em>. &quot;But on those unexpected delayed flights sometimes you run short. When I did, I was forced to get something from one of the convenience stores. I ended up buying a granola bar for my two-year-old. He loves them and so do I. What I don't love is the $4 price tag that went along with it. I can buy a box of six at Walmart for $2. They got me that time, but I will be sure to pack extras on the next trip.&quot;</p> <h3>2. Wi-Fi</h3> <p>Airports are increasingly jumping on the free Wi-Fi bandwagon or offering personal tablets for free use when you're in the terminal, but there are still hubs that require you to pay for Internet service if you want to get online while you're at the terminal. Most of us can use our phone networks to do what we need to do, but if you need more capability or a bigger screen that can only operate with Wi-Fi, do some detective work before purchasing.&nbsp;<span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">Pop into a few bars and restaurants to see if they offer it, or a Starbucks.</span></p> <h3>3. Headphones</h3> <p><span style="font-size: 13px; line-height: 1.7em;">If you forgot your set, ask your airline's attendants if the flight offers headphones. Instead of buying a $200 pair of Beats just because you see it at the wirport vending machine, find out if there are pairs for available on your flight, which usually only cost about $2.</span></p> <p>&quot;There is no reason that a set of headphones cannot have a permanent home in the side pocket of your carry on bag,&quot; adds John Z. Wetmore, producer for <a href="http://www.pedestrians.org/">Perils for Pedestrians</a> television. &quot;It takes very little planning to avoid overpriced last-minute purchases. Packing checklists are your friend if you have a tendency to leave things at home when you pack at the last minute.&quot;</p> <h3>4. Neck Pillows</h3> <p>You want to guess how many neck pillows are in my closet? Three! It seems like my husband buys a new pillow every time he flies, and those three aren't even counting the ones he's lost over the years. That's <em>hundreds</em> of dollars worth of <em>neck pillows</em>.</p> <p>I've never purchased a neck pillow in my life; it's always seemed like a huge waste of money to look so silly on an airplane to me. Instead, I bring my own travel-worn bed pillow from home (it's flat, so it's easy to travel with), or I ask for a blanket/pillow on the flight so I can cuddle up on the window or rest my head on the tray table. Much better than sleeping straight up with an inner tube around your neck, in my opinion.</p> <h3>5. Currency Exchange</h3> <p>The last time I traveled someplace where I needed to exchange currency, the dollar was worth half what it was at home &mdash; and that didn't include the fees that the service charged. That's a tough blow to take when you've saved for so long for something.</p> <p>DailyMail.com says, &quot;With so much else to sort out before you go away, it's tempting simply to purchase your foreign currency at the last minute in the airport departure lounge. But doing that means you'll pay significantly more than you need to, as airport bureaux de change offer some of the worst possible deals to walk-up customers.&quot;</p> <p>&quot;The alternatives? Pre-order currency. Earlier this week, buying &euro;500 on the spot at a Gatwick Moneycorp bureau would have cost you &pound;440.88. Had you ordered the &euro;500 online on <a href="http://www.moneycorp.com/">Moneycorp</a>&nbsp;to pick up at the airport, the cost would have been &pound;404.17.&quot;</p> <p>This is obviously an example from Europe, but you can apply the same principles in the United States when you're preparing for travel abroad.</p> <h3>6. Parking</h3> <p>Sometimes you have no other choice but to drive yourself to the airport and park. And you'll pay dearly for it. If you can help it, ask a friend or family member to give you a ride &mdash; slip 'em some cash for helping you save some &mdash; or use public transportation where available and convenient.</p> <h2>Best Airport Buys</h2> <p>Okay, not everything at the airport is a total ripoff.</p> <h3>1. Local Food/Beverage Souvenir Items</h3> <p>I'm not much for tangible souvenirs &mdash; just one more piece of junk I have to put out at the yard sale next year &mdash; so I prefer to preserve my trips' memories with photos that I can frame and local food items that I can consume when I'm home. For instance, I've purchased beignet dry mix from New Orleans and BBQ sauce from Memphis that bring back fond memories of each trip when I use them.</p> <p>Liz Dahl, founder of <a href="http://boomertravelpatrol.com/">Boomer Travel Patrol</a>, agrees that this is a best practice, especially on liquids.</p> <p>&quot;For me, the best buys are local products from the city the airport is located, especially the liquid items,&quot; she says. &quot;This is the place to buy those souvenirs, because you can take them on the plane with you at that point.&quot;</p> <p>The latter is a good point to remember if you're only traveling with a carry-on bag. You won't be happy if you have to give up a liquid item because you overlooked the rules while you were shopping.</p> <h3>2. Duty Free</h3> <p>If you're in the market for cigarettes or alcohol, you can score great deals at the duty-free shops. All other items, especially electronics and beauty products, aren't a very wise purchase as you usually can find them cheaper at home or online.</p> <p>Consider, however, that you're allowed to bring mini bottles of liquor onto your flight. That's right &mdash; according to <a href="http://blog.tsa.gov/2014/01/tsa-travel-tips-tuesday-traveling-with.html">The TSA Blog</a>, &quot;Travelers may carry as many 3.4 ounce bottles of liquid (mini bottles of liquor are 1.7 ounces) that fit comfortably in one, quart sized, clear plastic, zip-top bag. Comfortable means that the bag will seal without busting at the seams. One bag is permitted per passenger.&quot;</p> <p>That's pretty much an invitation to load up on the mini bottles at the duty-free shop.</p> <p>Of course, there's this stipulation: <a href="http://www.ecfr.gov/cgi-bin/text-idx?c=ecfr&amp;SID=03efb7c1b34301bf39ff6d98084cdd45&amp;rgn=div8&amp;view=text&amp;node=14:3.0.1.1.11.2.3.37&amp;idno=14">FAA regulations</a> state that &quot;No person may drink any alcoholic beverage aboard an aircraft unless the certificate holder operating the aircraft has served that beverage.&quot;</p> <p>But if you're savvy, you'll figure out how to make it work.</p> <p><em>Do you have other suggestions for best/worse airport buys? Let me know in the comments below.</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Fthe-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2FThe%208%20Worst%20and%20Best%20Airport%20Buys.jpg&amp;description=The%208%20Worst%20and%20Best%20Airport%20Buys" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;">&nbsp;<img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/The%208%20Worst%20and%20Best%20Airport%20Buys.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-8-worst-and-best-airport-buys">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/23-airport-hacks-to-remember-before-your-next-flight">23 Airport Hacks to Remember Before Your Next Flight</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-secret-flight-search-site-savvy-travelers-use">The Secret Flight Search Site Savvy Travelers Use</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-ways-carry-on-luggage-can-save-you-time-and-money">5 Ways Carry-On Luggage Can Save You Time and Money</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Shopping Travel air travel airport flying Wed, 28 Jan 2015 18:00:11 +0000 Mikey Rox 1283485 at http://www.wisebread.com 6 Times You Should Drive Instead of Fly http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-you-should-drive-instead-of-fly <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/6-times-you-should-drive-instead-of-fly" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/man-convertible-travel-78189393-small.jpg" alt="man convertible travel" title="man convertible travel" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Unless you're absolutely terrified of soaring the friendly skies, you may choose flying over driving any day. Since you can arrive at your destination faster and you don't have to deal with a tiresome drive, flying is often a no-brainer. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-flying-during-the-holidays?ref=seealso">The Ultimate Guide to Flying During the Holidays</a>)</p> <p>But even if flying is your preferred way to travel, there are times when driving makes more sense.</p> <h2>1. You're in No Hurry</h2> <p>If you don't have to be at your destination by a specific date or time, driving might be the lesser of two evils. You can take your time, travel at your own pace, and perhaps break up the trip over one or two days to avoid travel fatigue.</p> <p>Even if you booked a hotel for one or two nights while driving to your destination, the cost of driving &mdash; including fuel and food &mdash; might be cheaper than flying. And when you bring your car on vacation, there's no need to rent a car, duh.</p> <h2>2. You're Traveling With Your Family</h2> <p>I didn't realize how much airline tickets had skyrocketed until I was booking tickets this past June. Traveling as little as two hours in the sky costs an average of $450 round-trip per ticket.</p> <p>If you have a family, multiply this number by four (or however many family members you've got), and you're looking at $1,800 for plane tickets alone. And as we all know, vacation expenses involve more than just plane tickets. You have to factor in accommodations, a car rental, food, and entertainment. Frankly, most people don't have this kind of cash to spend.</p> <p>But if you pile your family or friends in the car and hit the road, you only pay for fuel. If it costs $50 to fill your car, and you fill up four times during the course of the trip, $200 sounds a lot better than $1,800.</p> <h2>3. You're Traveling Last Minute</h2> <p>Booking an airline ticket months in advance is one way to snag a low price. But life happens, and sometimes we have to travel last minute. Several factors influence the cost of airline tickets, such as oil prices, distance, and the timing of flights. And unfortunately, if you're booking a flight within seven days of a departure date, you're going to pay a premium. So, if you have to travel last minute, you might be better off driving.</p> <h2>4. You're a Heavy Packer</h2> <p>Not only is there the cost of purchasing airline tickets, you might pay a checked bag fee between $25 and $35 per bag. And if you overpack and your suitcase weighs more than 50 pounds, there's an additional charge.</p> <p>This isn't an issue if you pack light or have a carry-on item. However, if you're traveling with a family or if you're a heavy packer, multiple bags are inevitable. And the more luggage you pack, the more you'll pay in airline fees. But if you drive a car, SUV, or van, there may be plenty of space for luggage and any other items you need to bring.</p> <h2>5. You're Looking for a Bonus Experience</h2> <p>Driving has its headaches, which is why some choose to fly instead of drive. But if you want your entire trip to be an unforgettable experience, the fun can begin the moment you pull out of your driveway.</p> <p>Select a scenic route on the way to your destination and take advantage of a few photo opportunities. Or if there are popular attractions and landmarks along the way, spend a couple of hours exploring. Why not hike amidst Sequoia trees in Northern California or spend the day at Lake Tahoe in Nevada?</p> <h2>6. Your Car Is a Comfortable Ride</h2> <p>Even if you don't mind driving to a destination, you have to consider your car's comfort level. You don't want to spend two or three days recuperating from back, hip, or leg pain after your trip.</p> <p>But if there's ample leg room, the seats are soft, and you're confident that you can make the drive with little or no discomfort, give it a shot &mdash; especially if there are one or two other drivers in the car. You can drive a little and then rest your eyes, or recline your seat and rest your back. It might not be the fastest way to get to your destination, but at least you can enjoy a comfortable trip while saving money.</p> <p><em>Do you want to share other reasons why driving is better than flying sometimes? Let me know in the comments below!</em></p> <h2 style="text-align: center;">Like this post? Pin it!</h2> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><a href="//www.pinterest.com/pin/create/button/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2F6-times-you-should-drive-instead-of-fly&amp;media=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.wisebread.com%2Ffiles%2Ffruganomics%2Fu5180%2F6%20Times%20You%20Should%20Drive%20Instead%20of%20Fly.jpg&amp;description=6%20Times%20You%20Should%20Drive%20Instead%20of%20Fly" data-pin-do="buttonPin" data-pin-config="above" data-pin-color="red" data-pin-height="28"><img src="//assets.pinterest.com/images/pidgets/pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28.png" alt="" /></a> </p> <!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><!-- Please call pinit.js only once per page --><script type="text/javascript" async defer src="//assets.pinterest.com/js/pinit.js"></script></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u5180/6%20Times%20You%20Should%20Drive%20Instead%20of%20Fly.jpg" width="250" height="374" alt="" /></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-times-you-should-drive-instead-of-fly">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-sneaky-vacation-costs-that-add-up-quickly">10 Sneaky Vacation Costs That Add Up Quickly</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-costly-flight-booking-mistakes-you-make-all-the-time">8 Costly Flight Booking Mistakes You Make All the Time</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-smart-travel-hacks-only-frequent-flyers-know">5 Smart Travel Hacks Only Frequent Flyers Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/are-airline-or-travel-rewards-credit-cards-the-better-deal">Are Airline or Travel Rewards Credit Cards the Better Deal?</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-flight-booking-hacks-to-save-you-hundreds">10 Flight Booking Hacks to Save You Hundreds</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Travel car trip driving family travel flying Tue, 04 Nov 2014 13:00:07 +0000 Mikey Rox 1250603 at http://www.wisebread.com