BEFORE YOU GO
1. Fly on a Tuesday or Wednesday
There tends to be up to a 15-25% drop in price compared to other days of the week! Use a flight aggregation site like SkyScanner to test the theory.
2. Choose unsociable hours
Sure, getting that 4 a.m. flight might not be a lot of fun, but it might just get you the best price deal.
3. Book in advance, but not TOO far in advance
SkyScanner has found that on average it's best to book just 7 weeks before you fly. But this differs based on where you're flying. Check out their savvy list to see if your holiday destination is there, and work out how many weeks in advance it's best to book:
- Barcelona = 8 weeks (14% saving on average flight)
- New York = 18 weeks (9% saving on average flight)
- Bangkok = 18 weeks (5% saving on average flight)
4. Switch on private browsing
When searching for deals You know those cookie warnings you idly "accept"? They know what you want which can cause the prices you're shown to rise simply because you've searched for those flights before.
5. Get a villa or Airbnb to save money
Booking a villa or finding a house/apartment on Airbnb can work out much cheaper than staying separately in hotel rooms. Plus, having your own kitchen facilities means you're spending a lot less on meals out.
6. Learn the right way to pack a suitcase
Learn to pack like a pro and you'll fit SO MUCH more shit in there. Great for traveling with just hand luggage, not so great if you want to avoid extra baggage fees on bigger suitcases:
7. Get the best rate on your travel money
Never buy money at an airport. This jazzy tool will find where in your area has the best exchange rate.
AT THE AIRPORT
8. Mark your bag as fragile
Not only will you have peace of mind your lovely luggage will be handled with the care it deserves, but apparently it'll also get stored on the top of the pile in the storage compartment of the plane, meaning it'll be first out on the carousel when you touch down!
9. Avoid children like the plague
Partly because kids at airports are always annoying. But mainly because opting for the queue that has the least kids in means it's bound to move quicker. If there's a businessman-heavy queue, go for that one. They know their shit and will keep moving.
10. Arrive early to bag free upgrades
Airline staff will know about any free premium seats hours in advance, so be earlier-than-early to make sure you have the best chance of nabbing them!
11. Weigh your stuff before check-in
Nervous you've packed one too many heavy pairs of wedges? Simply get on your weighing scales with and without your suitcase—the difference between the two results will be the weight of your luggage!
12. Just ASK for an upgrade
Simply asking airport staff and hotel receptionists if there are upgrades available might feel awks, but if you don't ask, you don't get.
13. Don't be part of the arrivals/departures board scrum
Download Flightboard and turn your phone into a live departures board for any airport. It'll save you craning your neck and means you can crack on with airport shopping/eating instead of waiting by the departures board like all those other losers.
14. Have a jiggle
If you hate turbulence while flying, the travel experts at SkyScanner tell you to jiggle about in your seat to counterbalance it! Apparently it works like a charm.
ON YOUR HOLIDAY
15. Nab the free Wifi - anywhere!
All those free cafe/restaurant Wifi accounts showing up on your phone password-only? People often leave the Wifi passwords in the comments of each venue on FourSquare, so get searching!
16. Download apps for city breaks
17. Translate the menu
If you don't know your poulet from your paella, use Google Translate's nifty photo function. Simply point the camera at the text you want to translate, and it'll work it's magic!
18. Take a plug adaptor
You'll get a lot more power points from using just one international plug. Never have that straightening hair VS charging your phone dilemma again!
19. Get GPS for free
Navfree is a free app for iPhone and Android, which turns a GPS smartphone into a sat-nav you can use in cars or on foot. Pre-load your journeys and it'll show you your location without using any data because they're stored offline in your phone!
This article originally appeared on Cosmopolitan.co.uk. Minor edits have been made by the Cosmo.ph editors.