Best Travel Resources
If not done right, flight tickets can become quite expensive. There are a lot of apps and websites out there, many of them require you to sign up on their site, and then you land up with spam emails and clutter. I avoid signing up on those websites instead use the following apps/website that works pretty well for me. I have compiled a list of my best travel resources, along with the details of how and when to use them.
When it comes to hotels, I strongly believe that loyalty earns you royalty! Maintaining an elite status with a particular brand has a lot of benefits, read more here. I maintain elite status with Hilton and Hyatt brands, but I still do some research before I book my stay. Hotel prices vary greatly based on the time of the year, and based on its distance from an airport or an attraction. Generally, prices are low close to an airport because you will find a lot of hotels and different brands close to the airport, whereas the prices will be quite high if you’re trying to find an accommodation close to an attraction. The trick is to find a balance between (1) How much money you’re willing to spend on accommodation and (2) How much you’re willing to drive. I recommend staying close to an attraction and spend more time exploring the place and not in the car, driving.
Upon reaching your destination, the next big question is how to get around, how to travel between attractions. I prefer renting a car but people who are visiting from foreign countries, new to US driving rules, or who don’t drive; getting around can become quite expensive and strenuous. Following, I have documented two strategies (1) Renting a car and (2) Using local transportation.
Find the Best Rental Car Deals
Rental car prices vary a lot based on how long ahead you’re reserving the car
and also based on the availability of cars on a given day.
Here is the strategy I use and recommend –
- Rent at the Airport: Whenever possible, get your rental car from an airport location, most of the time they offer the best price and have a lot of options.
- Initial Reservation: After booking your flight, reserve a rental car at the destination airport, but make sure that you select a rate and company that offers free cancellation at no cost to you. I use CostcoTravels (requires an annual membership fee) for my initial rental car reservations, but you can use other websites, just ensure there is no cancellation fee.
- Re-check Prices prior Departure: Just a day or two before departure, re-check the price of rental cars at the same location and for your date range. Most of the time you would see a huge difference and mostly the price goes down compared to what you paid for your Initial reservation
- Final Reservation: Upon finding a better price, first complete your new reservation and then cancel your initial reservation
- Loyalty Earns you Royalty: Try and stick to a single rental car company. I prefer Avis, as there are a lot of benefits once you get elite status with a rental car company.
Travel insurance is a must-have! Trust me, trip cancellations, last-minute hotels, and change of flights can cost you a fortune, don’t travel without some travel insurance.
Pl. Note – This is not a sponsored post; I personally use these companies for my travels, and based on my experience, I recommend them. Some of these links are affiliate links, meaning, at no cost to you, I may earn a small commission that helps me run this website and keeping it free for everyone to use. There are several other resources to help you plan your travel, including My Travel Planning Checklist, The Ultimate Carry-On Packing Guide, Must-Have Travel Gear Guide, Travel Reward Credit Cards, Best Places To Visit In USA By Month, Ultimate Collection of Inspirational Quotes & Sayings, and more.