Thursday, August 3, 2017

Plan Your Winter Getaway...Now

Summer is in full swing. The pool is refreshing. Why would I want to think about winter?

Good question. However, it you’d really like to get away for a winter vacation, now is the best time to start thinking about it. Why? 

Here are a few things to think about…even while you’re sipping your favorite beverage by the pool.

Start checking airfare. Yes, now is a good time to put in some alerts on different sites. A good rule of thumb for knowing whether an airfare is a good deal or not. Use this simple formula. For domestic flights take the number of round trip air miles times 3.2 cents and add $230 (RT miles x .032 + 230). For International take the miles times 8 cents and add $200 (RT miles x .08 + 200). It really does help to know if that email you just received is a good deal or not.

So, when should you book those fares. I’ve found that international airfare starts rising about 90 days out. Bottom line…check early and often, especially if you have specific dates you want or need to travel. Domestic fares are supposedly at their best 54 days out, unless you find a fantastic fare.

Also, start checking where you want to stay. Is it an all-inclusive, a vacation rental, hotel, or resort? Are you flexible or do you need a specific time and location? Look at Internet specials. Many places start advertising deals in the summer for their fall and winter stays. Sometimes you can get lucky and find deals at the last minute as resorts like to have all their facilities booked, but don’t count on that.

If you’re traveling internationally, be sure to check your passport. Make sure it doesn’t expire in the next six months. If it’s close to expiring, apply for a renewal immediately. Right now the passport offices tell me there could be a three month wait. It will be December in four months!

Do you have a house sitter or pet sitter? If so, check their availability. You wouldn’t want to find out at the last minute they are already booked with someone else.

Do your plans include a special type of getaway where you need a guide? If you’re thinking of diving in the Caribbean, exploring Antarctica, checking out all the Christmas markets in Germany, or hiking in the Andes…regardless of the time of year, you’ll need some type of guide. Start looking now at who offers what packages and what appeals to you and your budget.

If you’re planning weekend getaways instead of a longer stay, start looking at where you want to go and what’s going on that weekend. Maybe there are festivals, wine harvest events, concerts, sporting events, or performances which would be fun to attend. Accommodations might already be booking or booked. 

Check the calendar for events in the area where you want to go.

Regardless of when or where you are thinking of going…a little advance planning now will help you have a wonderful time on your winter getaway. 

Let me know where you went…

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