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Travel tips and tricks - Budget travel

Making sense of the ever changing world of travel is a feat in itself. The features below compile graeat and useful information Buzz members have come across in terms of how to get good deals, travelling with ease with children, understanding the jargon of the various travellers reviews and peculiarities in travel in various parts of the world.

With airlines merging / sectors code-sharing / routes being sub-let and the constant urge for everyone 'to apply a responsible attitude towards use of your carbon footsteps' being branded around, the face of travel has changed forever.

DIY traveler or pack"age deal?

The reality? There is not a "one answer fits all" to this questions. Based on your destinations, the number of people involved (if traveling with children and pets makes a difference too) and the time of the year you are planning to travel the answer will change in favour of one or the other. 

If you are  traveling to a European city,  for example, it is often less costly to organize the trip by yourself, more so in the off-season, when airlines are running specials on flights to Europe, but if your objective is to travel to Africa or Asia, it may be worth comparing with deals offered by a package company or travel agent. Travel agencies cut special deals with national airlines and resorts in the destination countries, that guarantees they can provide significant discounts in exchange for a steady flow of business.

Do-it-yourself do's and dont's

1. Before undertaking a travel with a budget airline with connections involved, you should be careful of the overlapping or stop-over time. If you have children and the travel implies a connection, experience shows it is easier on you all to avoid low cost airlines, unless you can break up the trip with a break or an alternative to sitting in an airline seat.

2. Do not refrain from checking scheduled airlines, especially in and around Europe, where at times they are often just as competitively priced when flying on highly trafficked, short haul routes. You may also be in a position to take advantage of any frequent fliers schemes that you are part of, which may allow upgrades, free flights or extra benefits such as increased luggage allowance.

For example, "flyfrom" accounts on Twitter post airline deals for designated cities. Check out the list> Follow your preferred airlines on Facebook and Twitter and look for deals there. Search Twitter hashtags (for example, #JetBlue). You can also sign up for weekend getaways and last-minute deals at airline websites.

3. flight alerts and social media alerts

Many websites and airlines will provide this kind of service you can subscribe to when the fare for a destination drops in price you receive an alert via email, the most common: bestfares, farecompare, aifarewatchdog, farecast, air-fare, sidestep, smartertravel, yapta (it monitors if the price drops for ticket you bought, some airline have a policy of refunding an amount to be used within a year). Sites that are well established to sell tickets also offer the possibility to scout for deals but it requires some digging on their website, look for orbitz deals and travelocity low fare alert.

To find airline deals on Twitter check the "flyfrom" accounts

Facebook and Twitter many airlines will post deals on those pages Twitter hashtags (for example, #JetBlue). You can also sign up for weekend getaways and last-minute deals at airline websites.