As every savvy holidaymaker knows, one of the best ways to find a great holiday bargain is to book as late as possible. Of course this really only works with package holidays as scheduled flights generally need to be booked well in advance to get the best prices. But as far as package breaks go, the later the better.
If you’re happy to book holidays online, this is usually the best port of call for low-cost holidays. For a start, online holidays cut out the booking agent as well as the high street overheads, and some of the larger tour operators claim that it’s 10% cheaper to book online rather than in the shop or over the phone. So always search online for your preferred holiday for additional savings.
For last-minute deals, search holidays with less than 6 weeks until the departure date. You can usually book right up to the last few days prior to departure and this is a great way to save a significant amount on the original cost of the holiday. Take Thomas Cook for example. You can find last minute holidays at Thomas Cook leaving within just a few days, which means you could be booking, packing and jetting off next week! Remember though that you may have to pay a premium to collect your tickets from the airport if you’re booking within 14 days. Bear that in mind and check how much this is likely to cost, as prices will vary.
When booking late deals, it’s usually worth keeping an open mind. Availability can be limited so try not to get your heart set on a hotel or resort, as you may be forced to compromise if cost is your no. 1 priority. Instead, be prepared to change your criteria slightly – such as altering your departure airport, travel dates, local resort, hotel standard or board basis, and even your destination. It can go a long way towards helping you find a real bargain.