There are plenty of different ways to find cheap holiday deals. The vast majority of cheap holidays are great and represent excellent value for money.
However, when booking cheap holidays there are a few additional things you need to look out for because it is all too easy to end up being shortchanged. Here we explain how to make sure that you actually end up booking a genuine bargain and end up with a holiday that you remember for the right reasons rather than because it was awful.
Book a package
Our first tip is to book a genuine package holiday. Do not be fooled into booking via an agent who offers you separate contracts for each element of your holiday.
A true package holiday should be just one contract that covers your flight and accommodation. You have better legal protection if you book a true package holiday.
Book via a genuine ABTA or ATOL agent
If you want to be covered, should your airline go out of business or a hotel closes you need to book via a holiday firm that is ABTA or ATOL bonded. To be extra safe, check that the firm is genuinely ATOL or ABTA registered. You can do this by looking them up on the ABTA and ATOL websites. Firms should list their registration number on their websites and documentation, which makes it easy to check that they are genuinely registered with one or both of these organisations.
Check out the accommodation
Before booking any hotel or accommodation, it makes sense to check it out thoroughly. Legitimate travel firms provide full details of the hotel including where it is located and full details of the facilities on offer.
It is never a good idea to book on a website that does not show you what the hotel looks like. Plenty of photos are a good way to get a feel for the age of the hotel and the standard of the rooms. You can use hotel review websites to find out what actual users thought of the hotel before you book.
Use your credit card
For an extra layer of consumer protection it is a good idea to use a credit card to book your holiday. This gives you protection under section 75 of the consumer credit act. If your holiday turns out not to be as described your credit card firm can help you to make a claim. These cases are not easy to win, but at least you will have support should you need it.
Do not forget the travel insurance
The last tip is to make sure that you book yourself some travel insurance. It can be all too easy to skip booking holiday insurance when you are trying to save money on the cost of a holiday.
However, if something goes wrong it will turn out to be a false economy and a devastating financial disaster. The cost of repatriation after an illness or injury is huge. Not just thousands, tens of thousands add in medical bills and additional accommodation bills and you will realise not having travel insurance is just not worth the risk. You really should not travel without travel insurance.
Be sure to book the right level of insurance. Be particularly careful if you have a pre-existing condition to make sure that you are fully covered.
Follow these tips and you will end up booking an inexpensive holiday, which you will be sure to enjoy.