The recent financial crisis or what some call “Black October” will definitely eventually affect all of us in our everyday lives. For those who love travelling or a getaway, it might suddenly seem a frivolous luxury for wouldn’t it be wiser to save those thousands than to spend it on a holiday?
Airline industries have predicted the same:
He (MAS MD and CEO Datuk Seri Idris Jala) warned that the global economic uncertainties would result in weaker demand for discretionary travel, fear of global recession and lower global air traffic demand with airlines recording dips in passenger loads. (source)
However, we all do need a break from our hectic lives and with more travel saving tips below, you might still be able to afford your holiday and indulge your travel bug with careful planning!
Maximise On Airline Fare Promotions
Take advantage of airline fare promotions. Be a little kiasu and stay up to grab great deals whenever Air Asia offers their fantastic zero fare promotions or heavily discounted flights. For those who prefer a little more luxury, they will be happy to know that Malaysia Airlines will be slashing their fuel surcharge by up to 70% to make travel more affordable for Malaysians.
Throw in Malaysia Airlines ”All-Inclusive Low Fares” promotion and you’re set to go on your next exotic holiday without having to worry about hidden costs! The “All-Inclusive Low Fares” booking period runs from Oct 20 to Nov 9, while the travelling period is from Dec 11 to July 31, 2009 with over two million seats available.
Look Out For Hotel Promotions
During the 1997 economic downturn, hotels all over Kuala Lumpur and around Malaysia’s tourist destinations slashed their prices in a bid to encourage travellers. During those times, 4 and 5 star hotels were offering cheap hotel rooms, some even below RM200 per night!
Whether we will see a repeat of those times remains to be seen.
However, lots of credit card companies have started offering really good prices on holiday packages and hotel rooms around Malaysia. All over the world, some resorts have also started offering package deals to encourage tourists, some of which include all kinds of little savings such as free breakfasts, dinners and massages. A new and beautiful Phuket resort, Indigo Pearl Phuket, is even offering its residents a free night’s stay with breakfast if it rains consecutively for 3 hours in a day during your stay!
So look out for these deals!
Fly Budget And Book Early
Budget airlines such as Air Asia and Tiger Airways often get you to your destination for a lower price than commercial airlines. With budget airlines taking to the skies to destinations as far as Australia with Jetstar and Air Asia X, you can plan far ahead for a great and cheap holiday. If you are planning a trip to Europe, consider Ryan Air or Easy Jet for easy and affordable connections between European cities. The trick with budget airlines are to book early as they often run lots of special promotions and encourage early booking by offering cheap flights the earlier you book.
Although the flight may be less comfortable with passengers having to purchase their own food, drink and inflight entertainment, the savings you get on your flight are definitely worth it! Think of all the additional eating and shopping money you will now have as opposed to flying commercial!
Research Travel Forums
Travel forums such as VirtualTourist are a great way to start planning for your holiday. Read the best budget and travel tips from fellow travellers from all over the globe who have shared their experiences on the destination of your choice.
Through these forums, you can often find great budget hotels which are safe and clean to save on your accommodation costs or learn where the best eats and cheapest beers in town are! Often, they offer helpful itineraries for you to plan your days in your destination so you can plan your trip early and figure the cheapest and easiest way to cover the sights of your destination. Who knows, you might end up making great friends through the forum too!
Although it may seem like a lot of work, it is definitely worth taking some time off to plan for your next holiday. With some planning and research, you can still afford to travel despite the world economic gloom! Happy traveling!