Five Tips to Get the Best Travel Deals


If you haven’t booked your travel for the holidays yet, here are some ways that can help you secure a good deal ... but act now!


Check fares on travel aggregator sites

If you haven’t conducted adequate research a couple of months in advance, your next best bet is to scout travel aggregator sites, many of which have dedicated ‘last-minute’ or live deal sections for hotels, flights and packages.


Don’t stop shopping for air fares

In order to get last-minute flight deals, keep looking even after booking the best available flight. Register yourself to get alerts for price drops from the website, aggregator or app, and make sure that there are no cancellation charges on your previous booking. Since most airlines want to fill up vacant seats in the last couple of days, you will invariably get a good deal. When you do, cancel your existing flight and re-book. It may not always be possible to get this deal in peak season and make sure you don’t take chances if you are with kids or have pre-booked hotels for a long holiday. Another option is to check websites of airlines directly or check their newsletter and twitter handles, since airlines tend to post the last-minute vacancies to fill up the seats.


Can find cheaper flights between Tuesday and Thursday

A good trick to snagging last-minute flight and hotel deals is to be a little less rigid about your plans. Be open to shifting travel dates, flight timings, airports and, if required, even the destination. This is because you are more likely to find deals at the eleventh hour if you pick dates and timings that others are not too keen about. Just shifting from a known, busy airport to a lesser known, smaller one will increase your chances of finding a flight. For instance, if you are checking flights on Skyscanner, a travel aggregator site, you can run into a lot more options if you click on the ‘add nearby airports’ or click `Everywhere’ as your destination to find the right place for your tight deadline. You are also far more likely to find cheaper and quicker flights between Tuesday and Thursday, as also for red-eye or dawn flights.


Look for alternate stay options and package deals

To land good accommodation deals at the last minute, forego hotels and opt for alternates like home rentals, bed and breakfasts, or homestays. Some travel aggregators like Yatra and MakeMyTrip also offer the specific category of ‘homestays’ to pick this option as opposed to a hotel. A good place to look for local accommodation is dedicated sites like and, which will guarantee a stay option at the last minute. Another surefire way of landing a good holiday is to go for packages instead of booking hotels and flights separately. These may even be cheaper than an expensive last-minute flight because you get discounted fares for unsold flight seats and hotel rooms bundled together.


Use ‘last-minute’ travel apps for delayed hotel bookings

If you fail to get a good hotel on websites, go for the ‘last-minute’ travel apps that can help you book one in the city of your choice. Some of these hotel-booking apps include Last Minute Keys (Android), Hotels Around You, RoomsTonite, and NightStay (both Android and iOS), which offer a wide variety of hotels, and are available on Google Play store. The options range from budget, premium and boutique to transit stay (day hours) and night-use hotels. Make sure, however, that you check the cities in which these hotels are available before installing the app. —

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