November 9, 2022

5 tips to save money while traveling this holiday season

Written by kevin-c

Saving Money

Can you believe we're approaching the halfway mark of November? Not entirely sure how that happened, but here we are already bumped up against the 2022 holidays.

And for a lot of folks, November means travel. Fun fact: the Sunday after Thanksgiving is traditionally the busiest travel day of the year in the US. Granted, not so much for the past few years, but all signs point to a record breaking one this year.

Given that gas prices and everything else are still way too high, here’s a quick guide for getting home in time for turkey on the cheap:

Pick a good travel day

Which means NOT the Sunday after Thanksgiving. The benefit of picking the right day to travel (aside from there being fewer people) is getting cheaper flights. Based on the analysis of flight traffic done by the site Nerdwallet, the fewest people travel on these days, and hence tickets should be cheaper.

Ideal pre-holiday travel days:

  • Saturday before

  • Monday before

  • Tuesday before

Ideal post-holiday travel days:

  • Wednesday after

  • Black Friday

  • Giving Tuesday

Use apps to find deals and avoid traffic

Gone are the days of waiting for the radio to give you a traffic report. Smooth out your holiday travel experience with the right mix of apps. Flightstats is a good one to grab, as it provides detailed maps of airports and real-time flight updates. If you’re driving, you should absolutely snag Waze, which feeds you info you about traffic, construction, police, crashes, and more in real-time.

Travel light and pack efficiently

If you’re going to with your family for Thanksgiving, you probably don’t need ten pairs of pants. For flyers, if you can get away without checking luggage, do it. Don’t bring anything you don’t one hundred percent need. If you’re driving, pack snacks and drinks in a cooler – much, much cheaper than buying them at hugely marked up gas station prices.

Be nice!

Seriously. Everyone has had a rough couple of years, and that includes airline, TSA, and flight staff. A quick perusal of social media will show you dozens of videos of people not being very nice at all when traveling. Don’t be one of those people. Causing a scene or indulging in general rudeness will slow things down for everyone.

Leave early

Whether you’re flying or road-tripping, get a jump on the travel day early. For flyers, that means getting to the airport at least two hours before your flight leaves. Have some coffee ready!

Do you have a secret travel hack that saves you time or money? Share with us in the comments below!