You have to admit, there are quite a few online travel booking sites out there today. So, finding good travel site reviews about these sites is becoming a necessity. Which site has the best deals? What site will give me the best customer service if something goes wrong?
People want the most for their money now more than ever. This goes without saying when booking travel plans for business or pleasure. That’s where the balance between cost, availability and customer service come in to play at these sites. Here is some criteria to consider:
- Search criteria that makes sense (don’t allow the start date to be later than the end date of the trip)
- Useful filters (narrow search results by airline, proximity, star rating, etc.)
- Site keeps a running tab visible on every page (know how much your trip is with ever add-on)
Now, when looking at reviews, you should consider these criteria:
- Real life experiences (preferably by the reviewer)
- Reviews are of sites that still exist
- Review is recent enough to still be valid today
Don’t waste your time and money by going to one site and just blindly booking a trip. Do some homework first. The internet has a vast bulk of knowledge on any subject and travel site reviews are no exception. That being said, I would look for travel site reviews instead of trying to compare a bunch of travel sites yourself since the reviews already did the work of comparing for you.
Travel guides or blogs are necessary especially for solo travelers. These blogs not only contain the places that you would likely want to visit, but also help one to plan their trip efficiently which is crucial especially for places that one has no idea what to expect. If you happen to be starting out a life of travelling, choosing the best travel blog depends on several features which will be discussed below. These features are simple but yet effective ways to ensure that you choose the right site(s) to follow.
Before you follow a site, it is crucial to check out the owner of the blog or site that you are thinking of following. Is the site catering to solo travelers, adventurers or thrill seekers? Is the owner, a traveler as well or just someone who spends their time looking at various tour sites and then adding those information on their own blogs? Many websites hire ghost writers to populate their website especially if they don’t have time to work on the pieces and just want to make their site look updated on search engines. One advantage with having the site’s owner as the traveler is that one would know that the articles came from their experiences and would be helpful in guiding you along the way.
Relevancy and Timeliness
There are tons of travel sites in the internet and searching Google would probably yield you thousands and even millions of sites. But which one would provide help to you? Look for a site that has regular and updated content to it. If you happen to stumble upon an old article, some of the information might no longer be relevant. You can also contact the blog owner and inquire about the topic. Travel blog owners love to talk with their readers and some frequent the same place several times but would not mention it on their blog. They can be helpful in providing you with relevant information on the place(s) that you are interested in.
Sharing is Caring
Travel bloggers are passionate about their travelling and would willingly put in links to sites that aided them during their visits. Look for a blog that not only discusses the wonders of the locale but also the horrors and what to expect from the places. Some might do a sponsored travel in exchange for a review on the web owner’s blog. If all the articles contain praises for the site, then it should raise red flags especially if you find some bad reviews of the same place on the internet.
If you are planning an international tour, the first thing you do is search online for some best travel sites and look for places to visit and stay. But searching website by website can be quite time consuming and you will realize that you are not getting enough information. So, the cleverer thing to do is take a paid membership of a travel directory and you will get whatever information you want for planning your trip. It may cost a little bit but the benefits are huge. First of all you do not have to search website after website for information. You will get all the information regarding your tour in one place.
Affordable and comfortable lodgings
In a travel directory you will get the names of the hotels of the city you are planning to visit. You will get the opportunity of choosing a hotel according to your budget as the rents are also given in the directory. You can also select the hotels after viewing in the travel directory what types of rooms being offered. Sometimes a travel website directory also offers discounts on hotel rooms, that way you can save some money.
Before even starting for your trip you can select a restaurant according to your budget and your taste with the help of a travel directory. Travel directories also offer discount coupons with which you can save some more money. Once you know where you are going to eat and dine you can plan your tours accordingly.
A travel directory helps you to plan your trips and tours. If you want a family outing or some adventure with your friends or a romantic dinner for two then you can search for it in the directory and you will get to know the exact place you should go. You can easily plan your every single day of you holiday with the help of a travel directory.
Travel directories can be helpful even when you are not planning an international tour. They are helpful even when you travel to a nearby city or a town. They will give you the detail of every hotels, restaurants, transportation facilities and shopping destinations. Travel directories will even give details of hotels, restaurants and shops in your own city if you need one. If you want to buy a particular thing be it a wedding gift or gift for someone you will the address of gift shops all around the city.
Finding cheap airfares is easy to do if you follow some basic guidelines and use the best travel sites. With the internet anyone can be their own travel agent and save themselves a lot of money in the process. Before I touch on the best websites to use I will first go over the most important guidelines to be thinking about before you start doing your online searches for the cheapest airfares.
The first thing to think about is how far in advance should you try to book your ticket. If you will be flying in high season then the earlier the better, probably at least three or four months in advance if at all possible. If it will not be high season then typically you can get your best deals somewhere between six to eight weeks in advance. At a minimum you should try to buy your ticket at least three weeks in advance, because this is often a requirement by the airlines to get their best fares.
The next thing to be aware of is that you should be as flexible as you possibly can. Do searches for different dates if your schedule allows it, and know that it generally tends to be more expensive to fly on Mondays, Fridays, or Sundays which are typically heavily traveled days for business people. Likewise try to be open to different departure times. And if possible be open to flying from and/or to different airports, especially those that are served by budget airlines.
The last thing to keep in mind is what day of the week you make your purchase. Several experts believe that on average you get the best prices right after midnight on Tuesday nights. The reasoning is that this is when the airlines put back on the market all of the un-purchased reservations for sale priced tickets from the previous weekend.
Armed with these basic guidelines you can now start using the best travel sites to find the best fares. First try searching the best aggregator sites which are search engines that search multiple travel websites at the same time. The best aggregators for airfares as of now are Kayak.com, Mobissimo.com and Momondo.com.
After you have found a great fare with an aggregator you should also check directly with the airline’s website to see if you can get it even cheaper there. And you could also do a search on Google for ‘promotion codes’ along with the name of the airline. Sometimes you can find a special running for the itinerary that you want, and you can only use this code on the airline’s website.
Now it is time to check to see if the aggregator sites missed a budget airline due to the fact that many budget airlines do not allow themselves to be searched by the aggregators. Southwest Airlines is a prime example. You can do this by using Whichbudget.com. If you discover that a budget airline that wasn’t covered by the aggregator sites flies the route you need, then go to that airline’s website and get a price. Sometimes it will be lower than anything that you found in your other searches.