Travel experts share tips to save on summer vacations

TAMPA, Fla. — The soaring cost of inflation is hitting all areas of our lives. Combine that with the high demand to get away, and people will certainly see an impact on any trips lined up this summer, but experts say there are ways to help save.

It’s no surprise people are ready for the perfect summer getaway.

“This is actually my second trip this year,” Jelene Wynn said.

Wynn just wrapped up a vacation in Tampa, but inflation she said does affect some of her planning for future trips.

“One of them like I’m looking at maybe driving versus flying, and then it’s four of us going to be in the car, so we can kind of split that difference, and I think it’s going to help that to come out a little bit cheaper,” Wynn said.

AAA reports while inflation is driving up costs, that doesn’t mean people are canceling their trips. Instead, it says many are making adjustments to offset the added expense, from staying in more affordable accommodations, choosing more affordable destinations, planning further ahead, and taking road trips instead of flying.

Though for people hitting the road, gas prices are still something to keep an eye on.

“In many cases, people are going to budget more on gasoline and maybe expect to spend a little less on the type of hotel they stay in and how much they spend on shopping and dining out,” AAA spokesperson Mark Jenkins said.

To fight those higher gas prices, AAA has a few suggestions: enroll in savings programs, get a tune up on your car, and use apps to find the lowest gas prices in your area. AAA’s gas cost calculator may also be a useful tool to help figure out anticipated fuel costs for a trip.

If you are flying for your next vacation, experts explained when it comes to airfare this summer, timing is everything.

“Expedia data revealed that August is actually the cheapest month to travel this summer,” Expedia spokesperson Christie Hudson said. “On average, airfare prices are about 10 percent cheaper than they are in June and about five percent cheaper than they are in July. So, if you’re looking to save a little bit, consider traveling especially during the last half of August when some people, especially in the south, have kind of gone back to school and the summer travel window is winding down.”

Loyalty programs are an easy way to rack up points toward rewards. Hudson said if you’re looking to save money, avoid traveling over the holiday and also look at when you’re departing.

“A lot of people want to travel Friday, Saturday, Sunday during the summer, and as a result, Friday’s are the most expensive day to buy tickets to travel during, so Tuesday is the cheapest day of the week, so if you can shift your trip to earlier in the week, travel midweek when you can, that’s going to save you a few dollars on your trip,” she said.

Despite inflation sending costs sky high, families are still finding ways to make it work to have a memorable vacation.

“It weighs in on everyday life, but I think when it came to the vacation, we were willing to splurge this time around,” TPA passenger Sydney Smelko said.

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Ryanair passenger shares ‘genius’ luggage hack to save money on flight | Travel News | Travel

A TikTokker has gone viral for posting a video of herself sharing a tip on how to make the most of luggage space on a Ryanair flight. Kristen Black, who goes by the username @kristenashleyblack on TikTok, shared the tip to help others fit more clothes in their Ryanair carry-on bag.

Passengers flying with Ryanair are only allowed one carry-on bag with them on a flight.

To take more clothes with them on holiday, they must pay extra to put a bag in the hold.

This can sometimes cost passengers more than the flight itself, and so it’s worth trying to pack light to try and fit everything in one bag.

Kristen has shared how passengers can make more room in their bag.

READ MORE: Simon Calder shares essential tip amid passport chaos

The captions accompanying Kristen’s video read: “How to pack for your Ryanair flight when you have zero luggage allowance.”

She then went on to share another hack, with the text in her video reading: “Use your hat for the souvenirs you bought during ya trip.”(sic)

Kristen put a souvenir gift on her head and placed her hat on top of it.

Lastly, she put items in the pockets of her coat, with the video’s text reading: “Stuff those pockets.”

Jackson commented: “Pretty similar to what I did on my easyJet flight. Was wearing three pairs of trousers, four t-shirts, hoodie, jacket with pockets for days.”

Sinead added: “You cracked the code girl.”

User xg00sebomps wrote: “So helpful and one of my favs right now thanks guuuurl.”(sic)

Travelgirl_lasvegas said: “This is….genius.”

However, user ii.szymon said: “Just get priority with a suitcase, it’s not even expensive.”

User bay said: “I’d rather pay the extra fees than look like you.”

Cracktoosie added: “But if I did this I’d get tackled to the floor.”

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Top travel discounts and some tips to help you save

DEAR SAVVY SENIOR: What are some of the best travel discounts available to seniors? My husband and are about to retire and are interested in traveling more but live on a tight budget.

— Frugal Travelers

DEAR FRUGAL: There are literally hundreds of different travel-related discounts available to older travelers that can add up to save you hundreds of dollars on your next trip. To qualify, you’ll need to meet the age requirement, which varies by business. Some discounts may be available as soon as you turn 50, but most don’t kick in until you turn 55, 60, 62 or 65. Here’s a rundown of top travel discounts, along with some extra tips to help you save.

Ways to save

The first thing to know is that most businesses don’t advertise them, but many give senior discounts just for the asking, so don’t be shy.

You also need to be aware that when it comes to senior travel bargains, the “senior discount,” if available, may not always be the best deal. Hotels, resorts, airlines and cruise lines, for example, offer advanced bookings along with special deals and promotions from time to time that may be a lower rate than what the senior discount is. Before you book, always ask about the lowest possible rate and the best deal available.

Another way you can save is to be flexible when you travel. Last minute travel deals can offer huge savings, as does traveling during off-season or off-peak times, and avoiding holidays.

Club memberships can also garner you a wide variety of travel bargains. AARP, for example has dozens of travel discounts available on hotels, rental cars, cruises, vacation packages and more — see The American Automobile Association ( is another membership club that provides some great travel discounts to members at any age.

Types of discounts

Here are of some of the best senior travel discounts available in 2022.

Airline: British Airways offers AARP members $65 off economy travel and $200 off business club travel. American, Delta and United also offer senior fares to passengers 65 and older in certain markets but are extremely limited. And JetBlue offers 5 percent discounts for retired military and veterans that are enrolled in Veterans Advantage.

Train: Amtrak provides a 10 percent discount to travelers 65-plus, and a 10 percent discount to passengers over age 60 on cross-border services operated jointly by Amtrak and VIA Rail Canada.

Rental Car: Avis and Budget provide AARP members up to 30 percent off at participating locations. Hertz offers up to 20 off to 50-plus travelers. And Thrifty and Sixt provides 5 percent off to those 50 and older.

Hotels: Certain hotel chains offer discounted rates for seniors usually ranging between 10 and 15 percent off but may vary by location. Some popular hotels that offer these discounts include Best Western, Choice Hotels, Hyatt, IHG Hotels, Marriott, Omni Hotels & Resorts, Red Roof and Wyndham Hotels.

Restaurants: Many restaurant chains offer senior discounts ranging from free drinks, to senior menus, to discounts off your total order, but they may only be available on certain days of the week or at certain locations. Some popular options include Applebee’s, Denny’s, IHOP, Chili’s, Perkins Restaurant & Bakery and McDonalds.

Cruises: Royal Caribbean and Carnival Cruise lines offer discount rates to cruisers 55 and over on select cruises. And Grand European Travel offers AARP members up to $100 savings per person on river cruises. Call before booking to inquire.

Entertainment and attractions: Most museums, zoos, aquariums, movie theaters, public golf courses and even ski slopes provide reduced admission to seniors over 60 or 65. And for those 62 or older, one of the best deals available is the America the Beautiful Senior Pass ($20 for an annual senior pass, or $80 for a lifetime pass) which provides admittance to more than 2,000 national parks and recreation sites.

Send your senior questions to: Savvy Senior, P.O. Box 5443, Norman, OK 73070, or go to Jim Miller is a contributor to the NBC “Today” show and author of “The Savvy Senior” book.

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How to save money: 13 errors travellers make on holiday and how to avoid them | Travel News | Travel

8. Overweight luggage

Airlines have weight limits when it comes to luggage, so travellers should ensure that their bags meet the requirements before the dreaded weigh-in, to avoid further charges.

“Try and wear all bulky items of clothing and footwear such as jackets or trainers, to avoid having to pack them.”

9. Not checking rules on liquids

Airlines are also stringent when it comes to liquids, and carry-on luggage can only hold liquids in 100ml bottles.

They must be sealed in a single, transparent bag that measures around 20cm x 20cm.

Jonathan warned: “Remembering this rule and purchasing these bags prior to your flight will allow you to check whether your liquids fit at home, avoiding a situation where you have to throw away any products.”

10. Visiting attractions and travelling at peak times

“It might seem more convenient to book a holiday over a weekend, especially if you are trying to save up your annual leave at work.

“However, it is worth doing some research prior to travelling in order to find out the best times to visit attractions.”

Tourist attractions may charge visitors more at peak times – which usually fall on weekends – or at certain times of the day.

Check when the off-peak visiting hours are for tourist attractions to potentially get some cheaper deals.

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How to avoid inflation, save money when booking travel this summer

During an interview on “Mornings with Maria” Virtuoso managing director Misty Belles shared her top tips on avoiding inflation when booking travel this summer.


Inflation is hovering near a 40-year-high.  (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer / AP Newsroom)

MISTY BELLES: So a couple of things you can look for. Right now, there are multi-night stays are multi-promotion. So stay two nights, get a third night free, stay for the fifth night free. So if you’re not looking to move around, you can actually look for those kinds of promotions and save some on your hotels. Also, look for prepaid rates because those are going to usually save you some money. Just make sure you read the fine print because a lot of them don’t have a cancelation policy attached to them. There are other things you can do too, like we recommend working with a travel advisor. I’ll just tell you from the Virtuoso perspective, our hotels and resorts program can save you up to $550 a night because of the value added amenities that cost the consumer nothing additional to book that way. It’s just an additional advantage you have working through a travel advisor who has access to those kinds of programs. 



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Houston gas prices: Tips on how to save money at the pump

According to AAA Texas, while Texas is still below the national average, the average cost of gas in the state is the highest its ever been at $4.29.

HOUSTON — Around town, drivers are seeing the numbers climb higher and higher at the pump.

“The gas prices are really hurting my pocket right now,” says Dominic Ballair.

According to AAA Texas, while Texas is still below the national average ($4.59 as of May 20), the average cost of gas in the state is the highest its ever been at $4.29.

“When we compare it where we were last year, more than $1.60 higher…” says Joshua Zuber who’s the Spokesperson for AAA Texas. He says a number of factors continue to impact the rising prices.

“Of course the war in Ukraine, a lot of countries banning or planning to ban Russian oil so you’ve got a tight supply of oil,” says Zuber. “Add to that increasing demand as we continue to see recovery from COVID-19, a lot of activities getting back to normal,” he continued.

RELATED: Why gas prices continue to break records

With the Memorial Day weekend approaching, it’s making some drivers like Patricia Franklin think twice about traveling.

“Too expensive, I’m just gonna chill out at the house,” Franklin says.

AAA anticipates that over three million Texans will travel for Memorial Day and rather than cancel plans, they expect travelers to modify them.

“Whether that means dining out at maybe less expensive restaurants or maybe not dining out as often. They may modify their accommodations, maybe staying at a less expensive hotel or building their trip around staying with family or friends,” says Zuber.

RELATED: You’re not just seeing things: Texas gas prices really are higher than ever – again

If you’re looking to save some money, AAA has a few recommendations:

  • Finding the cheapest fuel along your route using their “TripTik” website
  • B.E.T. – Check your Battery, Engine, and Tires
  • Drive the speed limit and use {using} cruise control when conditions allow

“You want to make sure that when you get to the gas pump you’ve shopped around,” Zuber says.

“I really have to use a credit card to pay for gas right now,” says Ballair.

The rising cost, for the foreseeable future, is likely something we’ll have to buckle up for.

“More than likely we are going to see these elevated prices over the next few weeks,” Zuber says.

Here are some more helpful tips from AAA:

AAA cautions drivers that allowing their cars to run out of fuel can not only put them in a potentially dangerous situation, but also could result in costly repairs.

Potential Costly Repairs from Running on Empty

Most modern cars have their fuel pump mounted inside the fuel tank. These pumps require a constant flow of fuel to lubricate and cool them during operation. Running a vehicle extremely low on fuel may allow air to be drawn into the pump, which can cause overheating and increased wear that eventually leads to pump failure. The cost to replace a fuel pump can be $500 or more in parts and labor.

Dangers of Running out of Gas

Running out of gas can put the personal safety of a driver and their passengers in jeopardy if the vehicle stops on the roadway. Power steering and brakes can be lost if an engine dies, and drivers may end up stranded in the middle of a busy highway. Fortunately, most out-of-gas situations can be avoided just simply by keeping an eye on the fuel gauge.

Finding the Lowest Gas Price Before Hitting Empty

AAA recommends drivers always maintain at least a quarter-tank of fuel. For drivers looking to save money when they fill up, the Auto Club can help with several free tools. Both the AAA TripTik Travel Planner and the free app allow drivers to plan efficient routes and locate the least expensive places to stop for gas near their location.

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Suitcase packing tips: Effective method to ‘save a lot of space’ | Travel News | Travel

Many flight attendants have recommended using “portable clothes pouches” or “clothes cubes” to store clothes in the suitcase in order to save space. However, there is another method which is reportedly much more effective.

Flight attendant Rhiannon Corbett said while talking about how to pack for the next holiday: “Do consider the benefits of rolling your clothes rather than folding.

“Tightly rolling clothes into compact pieces not only allows for fitting more items into the suitcase but it also cuts down on creases.

“Do try use packing cubes or clothes pouches.

“Packing cubes are a great way to compress your clothing and accessories to maximise space in your suitcase, organise your items and prevent items moving around while travelling.”

READ MORE: Simon Calder shares essential tip amid passport chaos

Flight attendant Miguel Muñoz also recommended the same method and advised against vacuum packing as most travellers won’t be able to use a vacuum at their holiday destination.

Vacuum-packing is a method of placing clothing and other items into a bag and sucking the air out of it with a vacuum. This removes the excess air and makes items as compact as possible.

He said: “I think clothes pouches are definitely the best way to pack your clothes. It may seem silly but you can fit more clothes in your suitcase than without these.

“Vacuum packing is a big mistake because you can do that on the way there, but probably you won’t have a vacuum to use on your destination to pack for your way back.”


“Nice and compact and no batteries to worry about.”

However, other users said it can take a long time with ‘Cornflake’ saying: “I needed a travel size vacpack.

“It does what it says on the box, it does work.

“But it takes such a long time, to do a medium bag with two dressing gowns took 15 mins. Just a heads up,” he warned.

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