You are planning the trip of your dreams to someplace warm and wonderful and you want to make the most of your travel dollar. Earlier, I talked about the many guidebooks we have at Calgary Public Library that can help you plan your trip. Today, I'll talk about some of the on-line sites you can use to look for the cheaper fares and accommodation.
When you are the one planning and booking your trip, it is important that you check different sources to verify your information and to compare prices. As well, it is of vital importance that you check and double-check your reservations. You don't want to be the one who ends up in Sydney, Nova Scotia instead of Sydney, Australia or arrives at the airport to discover that your plane left the day before. Mine is the voice of bitter experience - I arrived a week late for my plane. The airline had made a mistake on my reservation and I didn't notice!! Big, big oops!!
The following are some of the sites you might check for prices on flights, hotels, packages and cruises. Some sites offer all of these, some only do flights and accommodations. Some of them allow you to book directly and some will direct you to another site. I would suggest taking a look at the different sites and seeing which ones work best for you. I would also suggest that you check more than one site for prices as the lowest fares vary from site to site and day-to-day. Also, be careful to check what is included in the price.
Hipmunk offers flight information all on one page in a graphic format which I found very easy to use. On this page flights are listed in order based on a combination of price, flight duration and number of stopovers. Information on hotels is based on a combination of price, amenities and reviews.
Expedia, which has been around forever as travel websites go, does flights, packages, hotels, cruises, car, rail, tours. It also features last minute travel deals and mobile apps.
Some other websites worth looking at are Travelocity, Orbitz, and DoHop.
TripAdvisor contains reviews on accommodations and tourist destinations made by other travellers. I played with this site using Calgary as my sample just to see how accurate the reviews were and how much they agreed with what I thought. Some were good, some not! It's always best to check more than one source.
Facebook is a great way to check with people you know. Request opionions on your travel destination, places to stay and things to see from your circle of friends.
To make the most of your travel dollars, it is also important that you travel safely. Our Best Websites include the government sites which share information on the safety of travel destinations and health issues for travellers. Click on Best Websites and enter the tag "travel".
The best way to travel is to know before you go!