7 Expert Tips to Help You Travel More in 2024
The experts over at Going share their top budget-friendly tips for the travel-hungry.
Travel is going to be as big in 2024 as it was before the pandemic in 2019. But just because everyone is traveling, that doesn't mean everyone has the budget or PTO to travel frequently. In fact, according to Going's just-released 2024 State of Travel report, 29% of people said that time will be a barrier to travel this year, while 25% said that money was their main deterrent.
A shortage of time and money don't have to be roadblocks to getting some much deserved exploration time under your belt, though. With a little maneuvering and some expert advice, you can make more frequent travel a reality in 2024. The travel experts at Going just shared the following seven tips on how to travel more this year with Thrillist:
1. Let ticket prices choose your destination.
You're going to find the cheapest flight tickets by being flexible on where and when you travel. Instead of having a super specific list of destinations, have a type of trip you want to take in mind.
"Having some wiggle room around dates can also help; sometimes the price can be significantly lower if you change your dates even by a single day," Going travel expert Katy Nastro told Thrillist. "By being flexible, you can save big and, in turn, take more trips throughout the year."
You can use tools like Going to explore cheap flight prices. On Google Flights, you can also use the explore tool and leave your dates and destinations open to find the best possible deals.
2. Travel during shoulder seasons.
Traveling during the period of time between peak season and off season is a great way to find cheap flights and accommodations. The shoulder season is not a set time of year for every destination; it will vary depending on where you are traveling.
"Every part of the world has its own shoulder seasons, generally based on weather," Nastro told Thrillist. "In many regions, though, spring (roughly March–April) and autumn (roughly September–October) are considered shoulder seasons."
3. Make your long layover work for you.
Layovers are typically a lag. But sometimes, you can use these stops in other cities as a way to explore a bit more as part of the journey. You can maximize your long layover—or give yourself an intentional one. These "two-in-one" tickets are built-in stops that give you a day or two in a city that's on the way to your destination, and can often mean getting a significantly cheaper ticket compared to taking the nonstop flight.
4. Maximize your PTO.
Thrillist has a guide on how to maximize your PTO in order to get the most out of vacation days you possibly can. The trick revolves around strategically booking your days off around holidays and long weekends, so you're having longer stretches of time off of work. Longer periods of time off mean you can head to faraway destinations, travel on weekdays, and also have fewer Friday or Saturday night hotel bookings. By strategizing in this way, you can get longer vacations, enjoy more travel day flexibility, and avoid some of the holiday spike pricing.
5. Learn more about points and miles bonuses.
Even as airline points programs are getting less powerful, the ways to earn points and miles have not. Almost all credit card points can be converted towards paying for some part of your trip. Plus there are ways to link everyday accounts, like Uber and Lyft, to hotel reward loyalty programs. Going has a guide on how to get started—it can definitely be a headache to get going, but after you're situated, you can start racking up points and miles that can be used toward flights, hotels, and other travel expenses. For me, this is the closest I'll ever get to that rich guy adage of "make your money work for you."
6. Work remotely.
OK! Don't roll your eyes here. I know it is the dream for most people to work remotely, and they aren't exactly handing out these jobs like candy right now. But, this piece of advice from Going is more about setting up a temporary remote work arrangement, rather than trying to find a brand new remote job.
"The ability to work remotely, even occasionally or for part of your trip, can help you stretch out limited vacation days," Nastro. "Yes, you'd be working part of the day, but when you turn off your computer, you're still on vacation."
7. Embrace your inner Cameron Diaz, and house swap.
The cost of accommodations can quickly put a tailspin on any hopes of keeping a tight budget for a trip. But there are platforms out there where you can house swap or house sit for someone, and totally cut that expense from your list. Thrillist has a guide on some great new platforms that connect travelers with house sitting, house swapping, and pet sitting options.
Looking for more travel tips?
Whether you need help sneaking weed onto a plane, finding an airport where you can sign up for PreCheck without an appointment, or making sure you’re getting everything you’re entitled to when your flight is canceled, we’ve got you covered. Keep reading for up-to-date travel hacks and all the travel news you need to help you plan your next big adventure.