Top 5 Tips for Booking a Last-Minute Holiday

Posted on June 24, 2019 by Eleanor McKenzie
mature couple on computer online shopping

There are any number of reasons you might be looking for a holiday just days, or weeks, before you depart. You might simply feel the need to have a break, or have annual leave that has to be used up before you lose it. But is there a ‘best way’ to book a last-minute break that ensures you don’t get a bad deal, or worse still get scammed?

Here are my top five tips that can help you when searching for a spontaneous trip away…

1. Make use of last minute deals

When booking a holiday last-minute, time is ticking. Online and local travel agents will often advertise last minute holiday deals, which are cheaper than booking in advance.

2. Keep an open mind

You may have set your heart on a week in Italy, but what if there isn’t anything suitable on the dates you want?

Be prepared to consider another destination that’s available, and make use of the travel websites that have an ‘Inspiration’ button or last minute deals section. Also, remember that you are likely to have more choice during the low season as hotels and resorts are keen to fill empty spaces and usually offer significantly better deals during this period.

Travelling mid-week and early in the morning or late at night can also cut down expenses considerably!

3. Talk to a travel agent

Many of us have become so internet-dependant that we tend to forget about these high street businesses that served us for so long.

It can be worthwhile calling into your local travel agents and seeing what deals and last-minute offers they have available. Travel agents often have access to a whole array of deals and discounts that the general public won’t find by trawling the internet. They can also help with planning activities!

4. Sign up for an airline newsletter

I get regular emails from Aer Lingus and British Airways offering me discounts on flights to various destinations.

Signing up for newsletters from any of the airlines you travel with is a good way to find a bargain.

5. Do your research

As the saying goes – if something looks too good to be true, it probably is.

If you come across an excellent deal, it’s important to look into it ruthlessly. What distance is the resort from the airport and what will an airport to resort transfer cost you? Is the resort near to sightseeing attractions and what are the facilities like nearby?

Make sure to check the baggage allowance on package holidays so you don’t end up paying more at the airport. If you are booking a late cruise deal, do pay attention to what’s included in the price and how long you’ll be at sea.

I hope these help you in your search for a last-minute holiday. After all, a spontaneous break could be just what the doctor ordered!

by Eleanor McKenzie

Eleanor McKenzie is a Northern Irish writer with a passion for art, literature, and red wine. She's worked at advertising agency JWT, edited a journal for a European social policy think tank and tried to teach teenagers the difference between "there" and "their". Being 50+ has not significantly changed Eleanor's life, although she finds it a handy excuse when she wants to avoid anything too energetic.