How To Get The Best Post Lockdown Holiday Deals

How To Get The Best Post Lockdown Holiday Deals

Well, 2020 has been eventful, hasn’t it? After three months plus of being locked down, we’re all ready for a holiday. The travel and hospitality sector have been some of the hardest hit during the pandemic and it’s going to be quite sometime before the industry gets back to normal.  

It’s not all doom and gloom though, the world is slowly beginning to open back up and regain some normality, and those countries with a large tourism industry will be keen to attract travellers back safely.  

Many families have been financially impacted by the pandemic too, so splashing out on a luxury holiday isn’t going to be high on their list of priorities. By planning smartly, you can take advantage of some great deals and get your family holiday for less. 

Holiday Voucher & Cashback Websites

There are some great sites that list a range of discounts and money off vouchers for various airlines and hotels.  Sites like feature a range of offers that can reduce the price of your holiday.

Similarly, cashback websites are great for getting some money back on your holiday.  Instead of getting money off when you book, you simply visit the cashback site and select the offer you want, click through and book as usual.  After a certain period of time (between 7 days and 8 weeks depending on the deal), you’ll receive the cashback back into your account which you can withdraw or convert to vouchers. 

Be Smart With Your Travel Money on Holiday

If you need to take foreign currency with you, make sure that you’re getting a good deal by ordering it well in advance.  Converting at the airport or the day before is not going to get you the same great exchange rates.  

Even better, don’t take local currency at all.  You can load money onto a travel card online, which you can then spend abroad.  It’s just like using a credit card except you won’t be charged fees.  The Post Office offers a range of travel money cards, or new style bank accounts such as Revolut offer fee-free exchange too.

If you return from holiday with a pocket full of foreign currency, either spend it on the plane or keep it for the next time that you travel.  Converting it back at the airport will often get you a very poor exchange rate, it would hardly be worth it. 

Use Holiday Price Comparison Sites

Price comparison sites let you kill two birds with one stone, they can save you both time and money.  Using a site like Trivago or TravelSupermarket will compare holidays from various sites, showing you the cheapest options.  It also saves you time on visiting multiple websites, typing in all of the same details over and over again.  

These sites can save you hundreds of pounds per person.  

Sign Up For Holiday Price Alerts

There are a few great sites that will alert you if the holiday or flights you had your eye on, decrease in price. Good ones include Skyscanner and Kayak.

Join Loyalty Schemes

Most hotels, airlines and travel agents have some form of loyalty scheme that allows you to earn points or get those little extras when you book.  It’s always worth signing up to these as you’ll be the first people that the contact about new offers and incentives.  

For example, Marriott’s loyalty club members not only get to collect points towards free stays but immediately have access to things like preferred booking rates, free wi-fi and mobile check-in. 

Book A Family Room

If you’re travelling with a couple of kids in tow, then you may might need to book two adjoining rooms in the hotel.  

Many hotel search systems will default to offering two rooms (double the price), instead of offering a family room which could comfortably accommodate four or five people.  It will be more expensive than a standard hotel room but a lot cheaper than having to buy two.  

If the search function doesn’t let you specify a family room, check directly with the hotel.  

Clear Your Computer Cookies 

When you are thinking of booking a holiday, you’re likely using your laptop or phone a lot to do your searching.  When you visit these websites, they leave cookies on your computer and will know that you have visited them multiple times.  Many people believe that due to you being further through the buying process, then the companies will be less likely to give you their best prices.  Clearing your browser of cookies will make it seem like it’s your first visit, and will, therefore, be presented with the best rates. 

The jury is still out on whether this actually happens, with both sides adamant that this does/does not happen.  It can’t hurt to try though, so here’s how to clear the cookies from your computer in Chrome and Safari.

Consider Going All Inclusive

People either love or hate all-inclusive holidays, but when you’re a family on a budget, they can be a great way of lowering your costs to book and when you get there. 

Look for all-inclusive deals that incorporate luggage, transfers, food and drink.  It will mean a bigger upfront cost, but when you consider the cost of a family of four eating out at least once per day and additional snacks and drinks to that, then you are looking at hundreds of pounds over a typical holiday. 

If you feel like all-inclusive is a bit restrictive for you, look for breakfast and half-board options too. 

Book Your Activities In Advance

Lots of people like to book tours, boat trips and other events to make their holiday memorable.  Do your research about what’s on offer and book it in advance before you leave.  You’ll save a huge amount of money than if you booked it through a rep on the day or someone selling tickets out on the street. 

Book Your Flights Early Or Late

Airlines are very eager to get people to fly with them over the next few months, so will be offering great prices on their flights.  You’ll get good prices booking well in advance (six months plus) or, if you have the nerve to risk it, one-two weeks before.  

Ensure That You Are ATOL Protected

Even at the best of times, hotels, airlines and holiday companies can go out of business suddenly, leaving tourists stranded and unable to get home without paying a hefty price tag. 

You don’t want to be left stranded and footing the bill for accommodation and flights.

Should anything happen, you’ll be guaranteed to get home. 

Buy The Correct Travel Insurance

Like the ATOL protection, travel insurance won’t save you money when booking, but could potentially save you thousands of pounds. 

In addition to providing all of the standard health and property coverage, ensure that your insurance will allow you to cancel at short notice should you or your family become sick with COVID-19 or need to quarantines.  It should also refund you if your destination country is declared unsafe, or if residents of the UK are banned from travelling to and from somewhere. 

If you can pay for your holiday on your credit card, as you’ll have some extra protection against cancellations and refunds. 

These are all ‘what if’ scenarios but as this year has taught us, anything can happen. 

Consider A Staycation

It’s only natural to want to head for sunny foreign shores after an extremely stressful period, but that’s not your only option.  

The UK tourism industry could use a bit of TLC too.  So if you’re looking to stay local, there are still deals to be had when looking for travel and accommodation for your holiday.

It might also be a good alternative for families that are still hesitant about travelling while the pandemic is still ongoing.  It really is a personal decision. 

Accommodation tends to be more expensive in the UK than in Europe, but when you consider the cost of flights and other expenditure, you may be able to get the UK trip a lot cheaper than you think.   Plus, it’s been predicted that we’re going to have good summer weather so it could be a great choice. 

Final Thoughts

Whether you’re heading for the beaches of Europe or the beautiful Lake District, this summer is certainly going to be a bit different than we’re used to.  

While there’s still a lot of uncertainty around the hospitality sector and the safety of particular countries, there are many air corridors opening up to allow people to travel in relative safety.  There are still many deals to be had to make your family budget stretch as far as possible if you know where to look. 

If you’re looking to stay close to home, the UK tourism sector is in need of your support too. 

Wherever you go, be smart about where and how you book, follow the latest health and safety advice, and then relax and enjoy your holiday.   

Kate Dyson

Kate is the Founder of The Motherload, the 'owner' of one husband, two daughters, two cats and one rabbit. She loves wine, loathes exercise and fervently believes in the power of women supporting women. Find me on instagram: @themotherloadhq

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