With spring in the air and #COVID at least temporarily on the retreat, many people are looking forward to a #summer vacation. Most haven’t traveled as far as often over the last two years, and the urge to get away is widespread.
In fact, summer 2022 is predicted to be “the busiest summer travel season ever,” Expedia CEO Peter Kern recently told Fortune magazine. And while prices are likely to go up, “I think people are willing to pay whatever the hell it takes to get away,” he says.
But there will still be ways to keep costs down whether you’re jetting off to far-flung, exotic locale or visiting family and friends in familiar location. And with everyone eager for a change of scenery, the first strategy is to start planning now if you haven’t already.
“In terms of summer travel, it’s essential to book now as the demand for travel is high and availability is tightening,” travel consultant Jill Fischbarg told Fodor’s last week.
To economize on airfares, visit sites like Google Flights or Kayak to find out where and when you might be able to go without spending a lot. Or maybe you have a stockpile of frequent-flyer miles that you’ve been hoarding for the last 24 months.
Two years in, rental cars are still scarce, and gasoline prices are going up fast due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. If you want to keep things cheap, pick a destination where walking, biking or public transit will be your main conveyance — a big city, for example, or an all-inclusive resort.
As for lodging, book now to get the best variety of options. Inexpensive hotel rooms and vacation rentals are already getting scarce in many popular locations; target off-peak and midweek nights to save money — or find an excuse to visit those friends with the beach house and boat.
The good news? Most providers relaxed or eliminated their change and cancellation fees during the pandemic, so if you do book now, the odds are excellent that you can get your money back if something disrupts your summer plans.
With a little forethought, the odds are even better that you’ll finally be able to take that trip you’ve been putting off since 2020. Keep your passport and proof of vaccination at the ready, and bon voyage!