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How to Secure a Last Minute Bargain

By: Anna Martin - Updated: 18 Sep 2012 | comments*Discuss
Bargains Deals Discount Travel Booking

As a solo traveller you will probably have a certain amount of flexibility, when it comes to booking flights and accommodation. Even if you decide to holiday in the UK, being able to change and adapt your holiday plans will enable you to take advantage of many of the last minute bargains that are available.

How to Spot a Discount Deal

An easy way to access up-to-the-minute travel details is to register your email address with online travel companies. Subscribing to newsletters will keep you alerted to and informed of special offers and deals, and will help you find bargains before all those hopeful travellers who are doing random website searches. Periodically checking special offers, across a number of sites, will also enable you to compare prices and deals in an informed way.

Bearing in mind that many travel companies slash the price of last minute fares will also secure you a bargain or two. Just remember that you may have to be ready to travel sooner than you originally anticipated, in order to benefit from this type of instant deal.

High Street Deals

If you don’t really mind how you travel, where you stay or the destination of your next break, the world really is your oyster. High Street travel agents constantly update information in their window, and generally have a varied selection of last minute discounts to offer the less fussy traveller. When booking a last minute deal however, always make sure you know how much the complete package will cost you, as hidden extras may become overlooked in your excitement at having bagged a cheap deal.

Always ensure you have up-to-date travel insurance and take the time to read through the booking form small print. There is not much point bagging a bargain if you later discover you have extra expenses to cover. If you happen to find a friendly travel agent nurturing that relationship could also provide you with useful information in the future.

How to Grab a Bargain

Last minute travel can be risky, but provided you are sensible and take the time to shop around you can easily find a bargain holiday deal that fits your requirements. Travel companies are battling with each other to grab your attention, so being aware that you are in a good bargaining position will enable you to take your time shopping around for the deal that suits you best. Don’t book the first bargain you see – taking the time to compare details across websites could save you money.

If you are flexible enough, travelling mid-week and/or taking an early morning or late night flight will also help save you money. Tuesday and Wednesday tend to be the slowest travel days of the week so it may be worth checking out the cost of flights during this time. Checking directly with an airline – via their website – could also help you find the last cheap seat. Changing the airport destination, from a large metropolitan one – like Gatwick, for instance - to a smaller, nearby airport – like Stanstead – could also help further reduce your travel bill.

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