Add Management

Aug 4, 2012 at 16:43 o\clock

Add Managment

9 Money-Saving Travel Tips
Launch Slideshow 
Photo: Courtesy of Starwood Hotels
  

Affordable travel may not exactly be chic yet, but in a down economy, travelers are looking to cut costs any way they can. Here are our 9 suggestions.
From January 2009 By Elizabeth Bailey, Geraldine Campbell, Yolanda Crous 
See our slideshow for 9 Money-Saving Travel Tips.
The fluctuations in the economy may change a lot of things, but one thing that remains the same is the desire to explore new places and experience new cultures. It’s just that now, when travelers set off on anything from an African safari to a weekend getaway, they’re a bit more conscious about their spending. Of course, we at travelandleisure.com encourage everyone to keep traveling. So we’ve come up with a can’t-miss list of tips to save money—both while planning and taking your trip.
One way to do it?Go all-inclusive! All-inclusive resorts have made huge strides in the past few years, and some great new spots that have been popping up, like the Paradisus Palma Real Resort in the Dominican Republic, and the Secrets Maroma Beach on Mexico’s Riviera Maya.
See our slideshow for 9 Money-Saving Travel Tips.
Not prepared to give up on your favorite hotel chains?No worries. Many of the big hotels—Hilton, Marriott, and Hyatt, just to name a few—are upping the ante, offering additional incentives for frequent guests, like eliminating blackout dates for points redemption. The Starwood Preferred Guests club takes it a step further, allowing guests to use points to purchase plane tickets any day of the year.
Another all-inclusive option, of course, is cruising. And there are some great bargains to be had out on the water right now. Crystal Cruises is offering stateroom upgrades and discounts of as much as $2,000 on some cruises. Worried about the cost of airfare to get to the port?Silverseas Cruises is—for the time being—offering complimentary flights from the U.S. to Europe for 2009 cruises.
But if you’re looking for an international flight without the cruise, consider flying business class—yes, business class. This year, airlines are expected to slash their fares on international routes by as much as 70%, according to Rick Seaney, CEO of farecompare.com, a Dallas-based air-travel research website.
So while you may be trying to save money where you can, you don’t always have to give up the things you love. Take our list of tips and get out there!



Ancillary Revenue
“My $250 ticket to Las Vegas turned out to be more like $500, thanks to ancillary revenue fees.”
Most airlines studiously avoid the word surcharge, so they’ve come up with this phrase to describe the add-on fees that resulted in enormous profits ($23 billion!) for the industry last year. Ancillary revenue—from preferred seat selection, ticket changes, pillows and blankets, and other à la carte services—has become the holy grail of airline economics. Hotels, too, have been charging guests for such once-basic services as pool towels, in-room safes, early check-in, and even maid service. But change is on the horizon. 2011 is shaping up to be the battleground year for ancillary revenue as consumer rights advocates call for more transparency and the Department of Transportation hammers out new airline fare disclosure requirements that bring these unexpected fees out into the open.
T+L Tip: Until the DOT obliges airlines to be more transparent about fees, use TripAdvisor’s newly enhanced “fees estimator” function to see what the real cost of a ticket will be.
Contract of Carriage
“After my flight was canceled, I told the gate agent that he had to book me on the next flight, even on another airline, as stated in my ticket’s contract of carriage.”
Think of this as an airline’s official ticket rules. For the most part, airlines write these contracts as they see fit. But that may change as the DOT works on a new rule of its own, one that would require airlines to offer the lowest available fare, refund canceled tickets within 20 days, allow customers to cancel a reservation within 24 hours of purchase at no charge, and deliver mishandled luggage within 24 hours.
T+L Tip: When in doubt, ask an airline rep for a copy of the contract. They are required to give it to you.