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Cliff Calderwood is a travel writer living in rural Massachusetts. He writes extensively about New England where he has lived for the last 31 years with his family and dogs, and a bunch of animals in the woods that have a lot more right to live there than he does - but he watches out for them.

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Insider Travel Tips for Cheaper Flights and Hotel Rooms

passport imageLong gone are the days when everybody hunts out a travel agent to book their vacation or trip to USA or Europe and Asia. Most people go online these days and do their research and booking themselves.

There are so many tools and websites to help it can become dizzy and confusing and sometimes we settle for less than we can get.

This is true whether it is booking a getaway weekend on Cape Cod or a week in London or Madrid.

But with this power to do everything ourselves we are cut out of the tricks and secrets that somebody in the industry knows about on how to pay much less for flights and accommodation.

While I know a lot about destinations and attractions in New England I have never held myself up as an expert in booking travel. But there are still experts in the travel field writing for magazines or working at the few remaining large travel agencies.

Here are four juicy tips from the industry to get you started with your New Year travel planning.

1. Travel on Off-Peak Days:

If you fly on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Saturday then not only will your fare be lower but the plane will be less crowded. When taking a long weekend consider avoiding leaving on a peak Thursday or Friday and instead plan to fly on a Saturday and return on a Tuesday. Traveling off-peak also means you’re more likely be able to use your mileage-award points.

2. Take a Midday Flight:

Many people like to take an early flight close to dawn so they can arrive at their destination for midday and still have plenty of time to do stuff but midday is not always the best time to arrive. It will be at its hottest in the summer, also it’s busiest and your hotel room will not be ready. Instead take a midday flight out and arrive later in the day.

3. Hidden Deals in your E-mail Box:

Do you ever have the opportunity to give airlines or hotels or travel sites your email but then hesitate because you hate spam? Well, get over it! Sort of that is. Do give them an email address as this is the way you’ll get early notices and email alerts of all the special deals not available to everybody else. But don’t give them your normal email address. Create a special one at Google gmail – not hotmail or AOL please but gmail – and give it out only to travel sites. Then ignore it and when you’re ready for a trip go check this account and just check the latest alerts and deals and trash the rest.

4. Getting the Best Lodging Value for your Dollar:

Don’t eliminate luxury hotels from your scan. The price of a room at high-price hotels can vary by $100 or more depending on the occupancy rate in any week. For example a $350 room can go for $250 if the hotel is not expecting capacity. How do you know? Ask. Call the reservation desk and ask the manager or supervisor when the lowest rate is during your travel window.  The fact is they prefer to see a room booked for less than to go wasted completely. You have a lot more power than you think.

You can find a host more tips like these at Conde Nast Traveler web site here >>>

Another New England post by one of our writers is being prepared right now so be sure to visit again or just subscribe to our RSS Feed here and get notified automatically of events and news.

Cliff Calderwood
New England Online Magazine

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