Looking for a luxury vacation but don’t know where to start? This luxury traveller guide includes saving and planning tips for your next trip.
The COVID-19 pandemic has all but stopped the travel and tourism industry in its tracks, but things are now moving slowly back towards normality. With lockdown measures eased and the vaccination programs picking up speed, it’s high time for a holiday – and after so long spent at home, it might as well be a luxury one.
Despite the excitement of possible travel on the horizon, there’s still so much uncertainty that could fill even the most seasoned travel agents with dread. After a year effectively spent isolating, many people don’t even know where to start when it comes to post-pandemic travel booking – but those concerns needn’t stop you from planning a much-deserved break.
In this guide, we break down our top tips for arranging a luxury post-pandemic getaway, and explain how you can plan, book, and fund your next trip.
1. Search for the Best Deals
First and foremost, there’s no getting away from the task of scouting for good deals. You should aim to start planning your holiday at least six months in advance of your flights, and probably even longer now that the world has been thrown into turmoil by the pandemic.
By using holiday deal sites and checking for the latest discounts, you could save yourself a significant amount of money – or at least gain a better understanding of what’s out there.
2. Plan Early, and Act Fast
One effect of the pandemic has been to limit the number of holiday villas and spaces on flights available at any one time. With social distancing preventing destinations from operating at full capacity, there really is no time to lose when you find your dream break.
By booking early, you might even make substantial savings since early bird deals offer unparalleled discounts even in such trying times. If you’re struggling to get the money together, a personal loan could help you to pay for your flights and accommodation while stretching out the cost of your holiday over a longer period of time.
3. Seek out Unique Destinations
If you’ve spent any time on the site, you’ll know that there are plenty of luxury destinations ripe for exploration yet untapped by the general tourism market. By booking a holiday somewhere that’s a little off the beaten track, you could save money and avoid the crowds as the travel industry kicks into gear once more.
If you can’t afford them straight away, a layway plan could be the alternative to a short term loan, for example, and some travel companies could offer incentives to start a layway plan straight away, capturing rewards and other accommodation incentives.
4. Explore Alternative Accommodation
Hotels and resorts may be the standard choice for a luxury holiday, but there are plenty of alternative accommodation providers that are vying for a slice of the premium market.
By browsing the likes of Airbnb, you not only stand to save money – but you could also bag yourself a unique holiday home that rivals even the most palatial of hotels. Many such sites even offer ‘plus’ category homes, and you can easily filter the results to ensure you’re staying in an exuberant home that has been vetted by the platform operators and other guests alike.
You can even go further and explore couch surfing as the cheapest possible option, possibly even free if you spot the right couch. Couch surfing has its own benefits and drawbacks. For example, it is not suited for families with children, for example, but it could be well suited for single travellers or even adventurous couples. Be wary of bad reviews, though, as things could turn ugly real fast and it’s always best to avoid bad experiences when travelling alone.
5. Check for ATOL Protection
If you’ve not heard of it, ATOL is a financial protection scheme that applies to the majority of package air holidays sold by UK businesses. By law, certain holidays should come with protection to ensure that any cancellations or other issues do not leave wannabe travellers out of pocket.
Now more than ever, the ATOL scheme should be sought out by holidaymakers since there is no telling how the pandemic will progress. By only booking via reputable providers and ensuring your holiday is ATOL protected, you can avoid substantial financial losses that could arise without such security.
6. Expect the Unexpected
Above all else, it really does pay to expect the unexpected. The COVID-19 pandemic has decimated the global travel industry, and movement between countries is still subject to intensive testing and perhaps even quarantine.
For those returning to the UK and other European countries, a holiday in certain destinations could mean a two-week stay in a quarantine hotel – all paid for out of the traveller’s pocket. Always best to check the current travel advice and see whether the specific country you are planning to visit is on the radar for further travel restriction or even travel bans.
By factoring in extra costs such as these, you can avoid nasty surprises and hopefully end up with a windfall on your return should everything go to plan.
The Best Way to Plan a Much-Needed Break
All things considered, the last year has been incredibly hard on everyone and holidays are now long overdue.
By following the steps set out above, you could avoid any financial mishaps, save money, and book the holiday of a lifetime where COVID-19 will (hopefully) be nothing but a distant memory.