Travel Planning Can Offset Lower Loonie

Hotels.com shares tips on how to maximize your travel budget

TORONTO, April 7, 2015 /CNW/ - The Canadian dollar may have suffered some losses these past few months, but that's no reason to halt U.S. or other international travel plans. The travel experts at Hotels.com™ are sharing tips with Canadians to help maximize their travel budgets through a little advanced planning and preparation.

"Although it may take a bit of extra work, there are smart ways to get more for your money when you travel," says Taylor L. Cole, APR, travel expert for Hotels.com. "It's well worth investing time to research your options for accommodations, flights and destinations where the Canadian dollar stretches further."

Tips for maximizing your Canadian travel dollars:

1.  Popular cities with affordable accommodation

  • Some destinations are known for affordable accommodation whether they offer a larger selection of economy hotels, or simply have enough properties for rates to remain competitive. For $125 or less per night on average, travellers can find five-star accommodation in Warsaw or four-star in Budapest. Closer to home, North American cities under $125 include three-star properties like the excellent guest-rated Galleria Palms Orlando or the Wyndham Garden Niagara Falls Fallsview in Ontario. See more affordable cities via the Hotels.com™ Hotel Price Index™ (HPI™).

2.   Cities with the largest hotel price drops

  • If you're looking for a more exotic locale and a deal, five cities in Thailand including the popular Chiang Mai, experienced decreases in daily accommodation prices upwards of 25 per cent in 2014 according to the latest HPI.

3.   Grow your loyalty

  • Sign up for a travel loyalty program to earn free perks. The Welcome Rewards™ program from Hotels.com offers greater flexibility in the type of accommodation with over 100,000 hotels included and gives members one night for every 10 stayed.

4.   Get complimentary meals

  • When booking your accommodation, choose a hotel with free breakfast to save on food costs. If booking through Hotels.com, there is a search filter to narrow down your options.

5.   Extend your business trip

  • If you're already travelling for your job, consider extending the trip to explore the local sights. You may have to add on a few nights accommodation, but at least your transport is covered.

6.   Move thy body

  • Consider choosing a destination that is either pedestrian or cyclist-friendly. Not only will you save money on transportation as you explore, but it'll help you stay fit on the road.

7.   Free public attractions

  • Many cities have an array of interesting attractions that don't come with a price tag. Chicago is known for its public art with more than 700 pieces around the city.  In Las Vegas, the hotels themselves are impressive sights and offer an abundance of free entertainment. Plus the casinos serve complimentary beverages.

8.   Choose your travel day wisely

9.   Book International flights early

  • If you're going on an international trip, the same report shows booking flights 50 days in advance will result in the highest cost savings.

10.  Fly from the U.S.

  • If you live in Ontario or British Columbia, consider crossing the U.S. border and flying from a nearby American city like Detroit, Buffalo or Seattle to save significantly on flights.

For more travel savings, check out the International Sale for deals of up to 40 per cent off accommodation and don't forget to start earning Welcome Rewards while you're at it.

*All prices in Canadian Dollars

About the HPI™
The HPI is a biannual report that looks at hotel prices in cities all around the world. The data is based on bookings made through the Hotels.com website and the prices listed are the actual prices paid by Canadians - not advertised rates.

About Hotels.com
Hotels.com, L.P. operates Hotels.com (also known in Canada as Hotels.ca), a leading online accommodation booking website with approximately 435,000 properties around the world, ranging from international chains and all-inclusive resorts to local favourites and bed & breakfasts, together with all the information needed to book the perfect stay. Special apps for mobile phones and tablets can also be downloaded enabling customers to book on the go with access to 20,000 last minute deals.

© 2015 Hotels.com, LP. Hotels.com, The Obvious Choice, Hotel Price Index, HPI and the Hotels.com logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Hotels.com, LP in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

SOURCE Hotels.com

Image with caption: "Save money getting around your destination by exploring on foot or renting bicycles (CNW Group/Hotels.com)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20150407_C8307_PHOTO_EN_13941.jpg

For further information: Press Contacts: Lauren Wasley, energiPR for Hotels.com, Phone: (416) 425-9143 x 19, Email: lauren.wasley@energipr.com, @energiPR; Taylor L. Cole, APR, Hotels.com North America, Phone: (469) 335-8442, Email: taycole@hotels.com, @TravelwithTLC


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