Vacation planning. Due to the restrictions on travel over the past two years as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, it might have been a while since you’ve done this. As you start planning again you’ll remember that, as well as an immense amount of excitement, it’s also easy to get overwhelmed. Where should you go? Who’s game? Plus there’s additional considerations at the moment, including checking ever-changing coronavirus travel restrictions. But don’t worry, we’ve compiled a list of all our top tips to help you get started, travel better and even save some money when booking a break in 2022.
1. Start a mood board
Travel restrictions are easing and confidence to travel is building once again. With more and more people jetting-off on vacation, you may notice that your feeds are starting to fill with sun-soaked selfies and dreamy destinations. But with all this pent up desire to travel again and a multitude of destinations to choose from, where do you even begin?!
Our first recommendation is to create a mood board and save all the places that grab your attention. Think about your passions — whether that’s high adrenaline sports, history and culture, or just relaxing by the pool. Creating a mood board is a great starting point to help you get organised. Pinterst is a particularly good way to save ideas and discover new places.
Top Tip: Take a look at our Pinterest page for lots more travel tips and destination inspiration!
2. Embrace your spontaneous side
With travel restrictions changing what feels like daily, it can be hard to look too far down the track without worrying about changes in travel restrictions. One way around this is to book your break last minute and be as confident as possible that your destination is safe and open to tourists.
Got a free weekend coming up and want to make the most of it — but never booked last minute? This could be the perfect time to discover your spontaneous side. Our advice is simple: don’t overcomplicate it. Pick a city that you’ve been meaning to visit, somewhere you can fly to easily within a couple of hours. Live in the US? Stay domestic. Live in the UK? Hop over to a European city nearby, Paris, Amsterdam or Berlin, for example. Plan in advance so you know where to stay and what to do, then book when the time is right. Pack light and don’t worry about doing everything once you’re there. Tick-off some of the top attractions, but most importantly relax and enjoy yourself — you can always come back another time.
Top Tip: Did you know, you can use our interactive map to check the latest travel restrictions? Stay up-to-date and search by a specific route or just set your start point to view current entry requirements, vaccination requirements and other travel restrictions for countries around the world.
3. Stay flexible
One way that travel in 2022 remains different to pre-pandemic travel is in the importance of flexibility and ensuring that you're protected if your plans need to change. There are a number of additional reasons why you may need to delay or alter your travel plans this year. But don’t worry, because we have a few top tips to help you stay flexible.
Firstly, ensure that you search and book refundable flights — so that you’ll be entitled to a refund if you need to cancel. And be sure to add additional protection. When you book through Alternative Airlines, you can add Cancellation Protection, which means that you’ll be able to receive a refund if you need to cancel for a number of unforeseen circumstances. Even if you’ve booked refundable flights there may be limitations, so ensure you add this extra coverage.
4. Travel during the low-season or shoulder season
Escape the crowds and travel during the much quieter low season or shoulder season. As well as smaller crowds, hotels often offer discounted stays so you might be able to grab a bargain. Flights are often cheaper during the lower seasons too — as they can be if you fly during the week instead of on the weekend.
Top Tip: Use our cheapest fare calendar to find the cheapest dates of each month to fly. If you can be flexible with your dates of travel, this is one of the best ways to save!
5. Pack like a pro
You might think you’ve got everything covered, but things can quickly unravel if you’ve packed poorly or — and this is very important — overpacked. It can be very easy to get carried away, squish-in one too many items and accidently creep your checked luggage over the weight allowance. Avoid higher fees at the airport by making sure you pack under rather than over, or by adding additional baggage allowance at the time of booking.
6. Book now, pay later
There’s no need to miss out and there’s no need to worry about the financial weight of your next vacation. Because when you book your flights through Alternative Airlines, there’s no need to pay the full cost of your flights upfront. Select one of our ‘buy now pay later’ instalment options at checkout to spread the cost of your flights over time. Choose a plan that’s right for you, whether that’s a weekly plan or monthly payment plan. We also offer interest-free! Some of our popular instalment options include Klarna, Affirm, Afterpay and Zip.
It’s time to shift the way that you think about your work and travel life as two seperate things. From hybrid working to fully remote, many more companies have embraced a new, permanent and flexible approach to working. And this opens many new possibilities that might not have been previously available. If you’re one of the lucky people that this applies to, then make the most of the opportunity and take your work with you when you travel. Work in the week, then explore and relax on the weekends.
Begin by searching for discounts on longer stays at rental properties. Stay for a month or two or even longer, so you have time to discover your new location on the weekends and in the evenings. Perhaps skip between cities and spend a week or two here, then a week or two there — all without exhausting your annual leave.
In many different ways, the past couple of years have taken a toll. There has been a lot of change and a lot of unknowns. Perhaps you’ve spent more time at home then you would have done pre-pandemic, with less opportunity to get away or escape to nature. So 2022 offers a chance to get away from it all and discover new, scenic and untapped regions of the world, far away from tourist crowds. There can still be some apprehension when it comes to visiting busy tourist hotspots, so heading out into nature also means a lot more personal space. Heading to somewhere that you can connect to nature is the perfect way to relax and unwind.
We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our top tips for travel in 2022! If you love to travel as much as we do, the wanderlust will be real. We hope you have fun and enjoy booking your next trip — but also stay safe and remember to always follow the latest coronavirus guidelines.
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