Cost-cutting is the average Brit’s middle name and if there is the potential to save money on anything, we’re always right in there. This is probably why budget airlines have become so successful and while they might not always offer the most popular services, their low costs mean that they are never short of passengers.
However, the savings shouldn’t stop at the decision to choose a budget airline over one of the standard, mainstream brands. In fact, this is only the beginning of the cost-cutting and as we’ll now find out, the potential to swipe money off the cost of travelling abroad is enormous to say the least.
Here’s how to do it
Don’t book ‘standard length’ holidays You may have just taken two weeks off work, but that doesn’t mean to say that your holiday should last this long. In fact, this is a key way in which airlines make their money – with most passengers immediately looking for the standard week and fortnight long breaks.
A lot of the time, the prices for such duration’s will be much higher than if you picked ‘odd’ flying days – such as a nine-day break, or going away for thirteen days. It might not feel like the standard holiday, but that’s what a cheap getaway is all about – compromising on issues to drive the price down.
Invest in ‘perfect’ baggage You’ve chosen your airline and got to the checkout page.
Wait – how much?
This is the process that many customers go through and while the initial price of the flight may seem too good to be true, it will probably double once you have added your baggage on. This is the way in which budget airlines coin their profits and it’s up to you to negotiate these situations as best as you can.
You will always be allowed one free item of hand luggage and if you pack shrewdly, there’s no reason why this cannot last for a week. Furthermore, don’t forget that your choice of suitcase will make a big difference and if you can, look towards something like this Wenger suitcase in black which fits most airline’s dimensions down to a tee. By doing the latter, you will be maximizing the capacity of the case – which is one of the biggest rules when packing for a budget flight.
Hopefully, you then won’t have to pay the extortionate fees for hold luggage. In fact, if you purchase from a retailer such as Direct Luggage, you’ll probably have plenty of change left over when you compare the cost of the new case to the cost of purchasing a return ticket for hold baggage.
Don’t try and convert your service into business class Similarly, don’t fall for all of the extras that the airlines will push onto you. Unless you’re travelling alone with a child, priority boarding is absolutely pointless – while things such as travel insurance is completely overpriced. Don’t be fooled into thinking that you should reserve your seats either, on practically all flights you will be able to sit as a group and this can be again being regarded as nothing but a waste of money.
Stay away from airport parking Another strain on the purse strings can be airport parking, with the London-based airports charging unbelievable figures if you use one of the official parking zones. Instead, you need to get creative, and this will probably involve using a local pub or someone’s driveway. There are actually specific websites to find such spaces and in some cases, particularly if you are flying from the capital, you could save over £100.
Don’t cave into car hire firms Another costly mistake can also be related to your vehicle, with car hire firms desperate to reap as much extra cash from you as possible. You will normally be warned against the costly repercussions if you experience an accident and will subsequently have to cover a hefty excess – normally about £750. These companies will usually attempt to charge you around £15 per day, depending on the value of the car, to eradicate such a charge.
However, look hard enough and you could pay less than a fiver overall for excess insurance cover from a third party owner. The car hire firm won’t like it – but it’s completely legal and you’ll be covered at a fraction of the cost.