The holidays are full of things we love: hot drinks, delicious treats, beautifully wrapped gifts, and, most importantly, time spent with family and friends. But all that holiday cheer can make an impact on your wallet, and one of the most expensive parts? Holiday travel. It’s the busiest travel season of the year, and that means prices for things like airline tickets, hotel rooms, and rental cars can be much higher than usual.
Luckily, there are lots of ways to turn holiday stress into holiday savings. Here are five of our favorite ways to save money on holiday travel.
1. Be Flexible on Dates
If your travel dates are flexible, you’ll likely spend less. For instance, the most expensive travel days for Thanksgiving are the Wednesday before the holiday and the Sunday after. If you have the flexibility to travel on other days, you’ll save big bucks on airfare. Just remember to factor in any additional costs! You might save money on your airfare by traveling a day earlier, but will that require an extra night’s stay at a hotel or an extra day’s worth of meals on the road?
2. Track Travel Prices
In general, the earlier you book your holiday travel, the better. But prices can still fluctuate! To make sure you’re getting the best deal, use fare-tracking sites or set up fare alerts to get notified about when to buy.
3. Pay Attention to Baggage Fees
Baggage fees can drive the price of your flight way up, so it’s important to research the costs for different airlines before you book. A cheap ticket for an airline that charges an arm and a leg for luggage can end up costing more in the long run than a mid-priced ticket on an airline that lets you check your bags for less. When it’s time to pack, try to travel light to avoid paying for extra bags. Need new luggage for your trip? Earn cash back on suitcases and bags when you shop retailers like Amazon, Walmart, Overstock, eBags, QVC, and more through the Ibotta mobile app.
4. Book Travel through Ibotta
Get up to 10% cash back on all of your travel purchases when you start with the Ibotta mobile app. It’s easy! Once you’re ready to book your holiday travel, open the Ibotta mobile app and tap “Find offers,” then “Travel.” Choose from more than a dozen travel partners — Ibotta will take you directly to their websites to make your purchases. Find hotel rooms at Choice Hotels, Best Western, HomeAway, and Hotels.com, or rent a vacation home through Vrbo. Book a rental car from Hertz.com, or save on airline tickets when you start with Ibotta and book your flights on Priceline, Orbitz, Hotwire, and more. You can even earn cash back on city tours and attractions from Viator. Ibotta will automatically calculate and deposit your cash back earnings after your trip. Check out our full list of travel offers.
5. Bundle and Save
If you need to book a combination of airfare, lodging, or rental cars for your trip, look for package deals. You can save money by bundling these purchases, not to mention time! Plus, if you start with the Ibotta mobile app to book travel packages on sites like Expedia, Booking.com, Priceline, Travelocity, Hotwire, and Orbitz, you’ll earn additional cash back on your purchase. Can you say “double discount”?
Now that’s a lot of ways to save this holiday season!