Cleveland — Ready for that mad dash through the snow? ‘Tis the season of holiday travel.
If you haven’t booked your trip, you don’t have to get totally whacked. And the travel experts we spoke with said there are even ways get a better deal if you already have.
The most important tip is to be flexible.
Sarah Silbert, Editor at the travel site The Points Guy says, "If you're willing to travel on Christmas or Christmas Eve, New Year's Eve, you will find better availability."
She recommends looking at Google Flights, where you can track prices to see how the dates fluctuate.
Also consider going to a less popular airport that's nearby. And if you have points, use 'em, especially on dates with less demand.
Sarah says, "Some airlines like Southwest and Jet Blue have no blackout dates for rewards. On the hotel side, there's Hilton and Hyatt."
He explains, "It will also alert you if there's a particular trip you want to take. And gosh, the airfares seen a little too high at the moment, it will notify you if there's a lower rate."
If your hotel's too pricey but you had to book, check in to a site called Pruvo.
Rick says, "Pruvo will continue to check and check and check, constantly, daily, until your trip, to see if there's a lower rate. And if there is, it will send you an email notification at which time you can hop onto the Pruvo website and then rebook your travel."
And instead of getting stuck at the airport,check in with www.clevelandairport.com to check your flight status, TSA wait times and parking availability.
Finally, for those hitting the highways, you can find the cheapest gas stations on your route with the Gas Buddy app's gas estimator.
No matter how you travel, pack your own snacks, but leave the gifts behind. Mail your presents in advance, or stock up on gift cards to save space.
Most of all, take a deep breath, and think about earplugs.
You should also know that the holidays are a great time to travel abroad. So, if you're at all open to going somewhere off the beaten path, now would be a great time to book. You'll definitely find deals.