It’s almost Christmas and I haven’t booked my flights! But wait there’s no need to panic or to make that face like Kevin from Home Alone because sometimes booking your flight last minute over the holidays isn’t such a bad thing.
Most of us are in panic and want to get away. But there’s no need to freak out. Relax, take a deep breath and follow mysuggestions.
Here’s some tips:
Travel Christmas day
This will bring the price down of your ticket as no one wants to travel on Christmas day. From New York to Miami it’ll cut maybe only $50 or $60 a seat but for long hauls it can make a much more significant difference.
Use those air miles
Many newbie miles junkies are surprised to find out that trying to plan a Christmas break a year in advance on points can be impossible. It is often better to book reward flights later.
The closer you get to the day of travel the more likely airlines are going to release those precious first class and business seats; and again especially for Christmas Day as travel is lighter.
British Airways and Cathy Pacific start to release many of their seats for about 48 to 72 hours in advance of the travel date so they actually reward last minute bookers. This is because they reason that they won’t sell the seats this close to departure so they might as well release them to their loyalty members.
Also don’t forget that most airlines today will allow you to use air miles on a one-way basis so maybe buying a return ticket on your own is an option too. Check all the variables in order to get the best price/comfort ratio.
Fly off peak hours
Trust me on this one, you want to avoid those horrific flight times when everyone else is traveling making security lines an awful experience, stressing out check in and cabin crews and generally making the whole travel process miserable.
My advice is to try to book a flight later in the midday or day when the airport isn’t as busy. Late Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are very good travel options as well.
And if you know you’re traveling on the busiest day, relax, go with the flow and give yourself plenty of time.
And here’s a bonus tip, most airlines allow you to check in up to 24 hours in advance meaning you can actually drop your bags off and check them in on the day before you depart. Yes it’s an extra trip to the airport but if you have lots of little ones in tow and you don’t live too far away, this is a great way to de-stress on the day of travel. Just check to make sure that the airline you are traveling allows such early check-ins.
The key is to enjoy the journey. I know that’s easier said than done during the holidays, but the holidays are supposed to be fun. So plan ahead, be smart, pack extra patience, and have a happy holiday.
Daniel Green, the Model Cook is a Celebrity Chef known for his healthy approach to food and living well. With TV, books, magazines and live appearances, Daniel spends his time helping fans to cook better, feel better and live better. He’s also an avid traveler and a self-confessed Foodie.