Last year, you might have heard how passengers were dragged off planes due to overbooked United flight, a flight attendant of American Airlines went crazy with an angry passenger, and some travel influencers faked travel photos. Insane right? But what’s even worse is paying too much for your airfare, lost on upgrades, and probably even disliked your vacation.
There may be instances that you may not avoid but you can become a better traveler for 2019. Here are 6 travel hacks you’ll need to avoid stress, problems, help you save money, and make you a smarter traveler for 2019.
Utilize Google Flights
Who doesn’t get tired of paying for expensive airfare? Fortunately, airfare is more flexible today and what’s even better is that Google Flights exists. Some travelers are still buying their tickets on third-party sites such as Expedia.com which normally have more expensive fares. Plus, dealing with unpredicted situations with third-party booking engines can be more difficult as dealing directly with the airline.
Thankfully, Google Flights is the most complete and thorough site for finding the cheapest airfare in real time, allowing you to book directly with the airline. Aside from those advantages, the site provides you with the price difference between certain days and also follows flights and prices for you, and gives you notifications if a flight you’re eyeing will increase or decrease in the fare.
Book The Best and Most Affordable Hotel Room
For travelers who are on a tight budget, they have this thinking that they don’t really need a fancy room, and they’ll hardly be in it. It might be scary to book expensive luxury resorts or hostels, however, there are a number of hotels that stepping up their design and upgrading their facilities to budget-friendly travelers.
Most affordable hotel accommodations today can provide you access to inspirational aesthetics, amazing restaurant and bar, and even a pool. The hotel you are staying in should be part of the total package of your trip and is not meant to add up in your stressful life. It should never be the extension of it by staying in a dark, dull, and dirty room. The hotel you choose should offer the comfort you need.
Buy From The Locals Instead
This is pretty obvious, right? As the number of rising rents and growth in online shopping increase, small businesses are being kicked out of their communities. If you’re a long time traveler, you tend to appreciate more a neighborhood that’s packed with charming streets and historic townhomes. The sad thing about this is that almost all independent shops that give the neighborhood its remaining personality have disappeared.
So ditch the junk made in China and search for local artisans instead. It’s much worth the money to support regional craft traditions in many places while you are also saving money.
Identifying how you can upgrade has become an art form today since it’s really difficult. For instance, bigger are the chances for you to get hotel upgrades if you book during special occasions such as anniversaries, birthdays, holidays, or if you’re a loyalty member, etc.
Be Friends With Locals
This is super effective because imagine how social media is connecting people around the world. Before you go on a trip, you can pull a call out for contacts on Facebook. These new set of friends can give you amazing advice on dining, some can even offer to pick you up at the hotel, or even bring you to bars you’d never find on your own. Just use your social skills and resources to make friends around the world so you can understand and embrace more the location you are visiting.
Travel The Eco-Friendly Way
It’s time that you have to be eco-conscious. Although airplane travel can hugely contribute to carbon emissions, it doesn’t mean that you have to stop flying to help fight climate change. If you do feel a little guilty for flying even if the airlines are already doing the job for you, you can take direct flights, fly coach, and even donate $10 for every flight to climate action or conservation fund.
If you landed at your destination, you can rent electric cars or hybrids that you can pair with map apps. Also, small ways like bringing a reusable water bottle with you, or just buy one from a local grocery and refill it as frequently as you can. You can stop using straws or drink your coffee using a ceramic mug from the cafe. There are several countries that already banned disposable plastic bags so use reusable packing cubes instead.