5 tips that will help you plan your next vacation

woman traveler photographing a church

Finalizing the details for your next trip? Here are five secrets from the pros on planning for your next vacation. These tips will save you money and time!

Dreaming of taking a trip to Italy? Ready to book a cruise to the Caribbean? Wishing you could go on an African safari?

Whether you take a lavish vacation every year or enjoy an affordable family trip every few years, a lot goes into planning the perfect vacation.

Some people go straight to the pros and rely on a travel agent to do all of the planning for them. But some people enjoy planning their trips themselves.

Getting ready to finalize the details for your next trip?

Here are five secrets from the pros on planning for your next vacation:

1. Pick a Specific Destination

The more flexible you are with your travel plans, the easier it will be to find deals. But if you’re open to going anywhere at any time, it can be overwhelming to sift through every travel deal and discount package that exists online.

Start by narrowing your preferences down to a specific region or city. The best way to do that is to think about what you want to do while you’re away.

For example, if all you want to do is lounge on the beach, you might want to head to Hawaii or San Diego. If your top priority is to tour museums, you might want to go to Italy or Paris or London. Want to go skiing? Maybe your destination should be the Swiss Alps.

Decide what you want to do, then do some online research to help you pick a destination.

2. Save Money by Searching Online Flight Deals

Online portals, such as Kayak, Travelocity, Alanita or Expedia, make it easy to find online deals. You can find amazing travel packages and save on everything from flights and hotel bookings to excursions and tours.

If you’re flexible with the days and times that you’re willing to travel, you can save big.

When booking segments of your trip individually, always book your flights before your hotel. You’ll need to know your check-in and check-out dates to book your accommodations.

However, some sites offer bundled deals if you book your flights, hotel, and rental car together.

3. Find Deals on Accommodations

There are tons of great hotel deals to be found online, but if you’re looking to have more of a local experience, you might want to reserve an Airbnb instead.

Decide what type of experience you want to have, then choose accommodations that can offer that experience. It can be tempting to book a travel package…

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