Travel consultants are asked a lot of questions. One of the most asked is: what is your top travel tip? We have so many travel tips to share with our clients, picking just one as our top tip is difficult. Not all tips fit all clients, but we have come up with our #1 travel tip that we think applies across the board.
Our #1 tip is fairly simple: BE FLEXIBLE. We know, you're going to ask "be flexible about what?" The short answer is "everything." But here is the longer answer.
Be flexible in your timing.
Most often you can save money, and find more availability, if you can be flexible with your travel dates. The obvious example is to avoid peak seasons. Peak season can vary, but one impact is when most kids are out of school (so more families are traveling, which increases prices and decreases availability). Another impact is special events. Traveling to New Orleans or Rio de Janeiro during Mardi Gras / Carnival is definitely peak season in those areas. New Year's Eve in New York City? Peak season. You get the picture. If you can be flexible with your travel dates, you will often save money.
Be flexible with picking destinations.
It's understandable if you have a specific destination in mind, and don't want to change it in order to save a few bucks. But you will have times where you can be flexible about the destination. Here's an example. You want to go to the Caribbean. Other than beaches, free flowing alcohol and food, and a nice pool, you really don't care too much where you go. Certain destinations will have better airfare schedules (nonstop versus two plane changes), and better prices. But if you have your heart set on St Lucia, it won't matter if Cancun is less expensive. When you're flexible about where you go, let your travel consultant know so they put together the best options possible for you.
Be flexible when traveling.
Travel is an adventure; sometimes you get more adventure than you bargained for. Some people may say "go with the flow", but it means the same thing. I have personally hunkered down in a resort as a hurricane hit. I've missed flight connections. I've had long flight delays, and I've slept in airports. Stuff happens. And when it's out of your control, it can be very frustrating. Being flexible, and refraining from stressing out, goes along way. If you can't fly to your destination, is it within driving distance? I recently had a client fly from Nashville to Miami to get on their cruise, because their flights kept getting cancelled.
Just be flexible.
Finally, just be flexible in general. Whether you travel domestically or internationally, you'll be meeting new people, experiencing new cultures, and facing new experiences. In this regard, being flexible translates to being openminded, or when dealing with toddlers at Disney World it might be called "being a saint."
Looking for more tips?
Skim through our Travel Musings to find more tips, stories, as well as destination tidbits.
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At Ships 'N' Trips Travel we have been providing memorable travel experiences for our clients since 2005.