Navigating the maze of airline travel can often feel like a costly endeavor, with expenses cropping up at every turn. Whether it’s the overpriced food, extra baggage fees, or last-minute souvenir purchases, airports seem designed to make you open your wallet.
However, with some planning and savvy, it’s possible to cut down these costs significantly.
Carry a Refillable Water Bottle
When you’re traveling, it’s super important to stay hydrated. But dang, buying bottled water at the airport can seriously add up, costing you up to 5 bucks per bottle. Here’s a tip: bring an empty bottle and refill it at the fountain.
That way, you can quench your thirst without emptying your wallet.
Pack Your Snacks
Airports are known for their expensive food and drinks, but you can avoid inflated prices by bringing your own granola bars, nuts, sandwiches, and sealed drinks. According to TSA, solid food can be carried in checked and carry-on bags, while liquids should follow the 3-1-1 rule or be placed in checked luggage.
Bring Your Entertainment
Don’t let airport boredom drain your wallet on books and magazines you wouldn’t usually buy. Instead, plan for flight delays by bringing your entertainment.
Load up your devices with some excellent books, shows, and movies. Don’t forget to carry a portable charger and headphones to avoid those crazy airport prices!
Use Public Transportation
Many airports offer different transportation choices, such as shuttles and metros, cheaper than parking your car in their lots. It’s usually better to shell out more money for safer transportation rather than paying for days of parking fees.
If you can, skip airport parking and rides altogether by catching a ride with a friend, coworker, or family member.
Seriously, don’t. Those trinkets and knick-knacks might be tempting, but trust me, you can find something way cheaper outside of the airport.
Use Free Airport Wi-Fi
Many airports offer free Wi-Fi services that you can use instead of buying an expensive data plan. This way, you can check the status of your flight and other important travel-related information without having to pay extra for it.
Use Airline Reward Programs
Most airlines have reward programs where you can earn miles and points for every flight you take. This is great if you’re a frequent flyer, as those rewards can quickly add up to free flights or upgrades.
Take advantage of these programs to make your trips even more affordable!
Avoid Currency Exchange Kiosks
These kiosks often offer high rates and service fees, taking advantage of travelers’ urgency and convenience. According to research, they charge you between 10%-12% more than the value of the amount.
It’s more economical to withdraw money from an ATM at your destination or exchange currency at a local bank before your trip.
It is wise to weigh your bag before stepping out to dodge the burden of hefty overweight baggage fees. You would want to avoid any unwelcome surprises at the airport – we’re looking at a staggering $150 for a single bulky bag!
Pack Versatile Clothes
Pack clothing that can be interchanged for multiple looks to get the most out of your suitcase space. For example, a dress can be paired with sandals or boots or a skirt with a tank top or sweater.
This way, you won’t have to worry about bringing too much clothing and overstuffing your bag!
Consider Flying on Holiday When Rates Are Lower
If your schedule permits, flying on the actual holiday could save you a significant 25%-30% on ticket prices. “For obvious reasons, people prefer to be at the destination on the holiday, not traveling,” Keyes of Going.com said. “If you’re flexible, that’s a technique that can be used to get the cheapest ticket possible.”
Book Long-Term Parking in Advance
Reflecting on this, Vinogradov told Simple Flying: “It’s generally recommended to book airport parking at least three days prior to a week-long trip. However, if you’re traveling during peak seasons like the summer, or holidays, it’s best to book at least two weeks or up to a month in advance. Planning ahead will make your journey stress-free and pocket friendly.”
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