How To · Travelling

Planning Cheap Short Breaks Away : Tips & Guide

For the past couple years I have always looked on TUI to find a summer holiday for the family but never really branched out to other companies such as easyJet, Airbnb, Google Flights etc.

Last year, a friend and I decided to go to Paris for a couple days and this was one of the first times we went through something like Airbnb and did bookings separately compared to TUI which does it all – flights, hotel and transfers. Since then I am constantly looking at places to go and would love to travel too just by typing in random dates throughout the year to see how much to save for (if we need to) and also when the best time to go is.

I don’t know about anyone else but as soon as someone mentions about going on holiday or looking to go away, I instantly *lightbulb* start looking and can get so close to clicking ‘BOOK NOW’ regardless of how much is in my bank account.

#1 – Knowing where to start

I have naturally gone on to easyJet and Airbnb separately and tried to get the best prices on both. Although I think both websites are great, I recently found going on sites such as Expedia great as they give you the opportunity to look at flights + hotel or even just flights. This makes it 100x simpler and easier as you get to see the exact location and also pick the flights that are suitable for you going through the same airlines such as Ryanair, easyJet, KLM etc. Hotels are also  great as you know what’s included such as reception, reasonable living space and on site food compared to Airbnb in which you are in someone else’s home and might be a general better location for the destination you are staying in. I know Skyscanner is also another popular site too.

#2 – Knowing when to go

Typically speaking end of June – start of September is going to be your peak months of travel where everything is bumped up because of the school holidays whereas October – April is going to be less expensive. This is obviously vice versa if you are planning on going to colder destinations such as Edinburgh or Iceland.

Another thing to consider is the day of the week you are planning to go. We know its nice going on a little weekend trip away – I know, because I do it, but this can also be another reason why your trip might cost a little more than if you were to go on a weekday. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are one of the ‘cheaper’ times to fly as no one wants to really travel midweek.

#3 – Knowing how much you’d wanna take 

Airlines are obviously going to charge you for your luggage and if you are anything like me and panic and think your going to be wearing 8 tops on your 3 day trip, then always be prepared for the worst. Hot places tend to mean you’ll be packing light and at the worst case you wear the heavy items such as trainers or shorts/jeans. Obviously this is going to be different if you are going to a colder destination. When we went to Edinburgh, we shared a 15kg suitcase and I also took a carry on with me and put some jumpers and my makeup bag in there.

TIP –  easyJet lets you take a carry on bag if it fits within the criteria and you can essentially pack your holidays worth in there. I know that when I go to Amsterdam, I will be packing as light as I can and not paying an extra £50 (again, I think) for a 15kg suitcase to go underneath. This I think is a great idea to do if your sharing with someone and also if your going on a longer holiday such as a week

TIP –  easyJet has NO WEIGHT LIMIT on their hand luggae!! So why would you want to pay extra for a 15kg suitcase!

~

My Trips For The Year

Budapest

Middle of June

3 of us

Travelling Thursday – Tuesday

Flights –

We got our flights through Ryanair and even though its not the ~best~ flights for us, it works out cheaper than if we were to either extend it another day to get better flight times or even cut one day shorter.

As well, we bought one 20kg checked bag to split three ways and also 2 cabin bags each. This, I think, roughly is the size you take for hand luggage with easyJet and one small handbag. (Don’t quote me on this – I’ll find out for myself in June if I am wrong). Finally, we also booked seats together.

Total – £541.01

Split three ways = £180.33

Accommodation –

We went down the route of Airbnb as it was pretty cheap when I last looked at the prices. If your looking for a central location there are also loads to choose from.

Total – £258

Split three ways = £86

TOTAL HOLIDAY COST – £266 pp

~

Amsterdam 

2 of us

Middle of July

Travelling Tuesday – Saturday

Flights – 

For the flights, went through easyJet. We thought to do the mornings on arrival and departure to make it easier for us and also gives us the most time there. Also, we are only taking our carry on bags so no extra cost of a 15kg suitcase and we haven’t boked seats.

Total – £189.78

Split between us =£94.89

Accommodation- 

We looked at many hotels around the same area (near central station) and loads were offering near enough the same price or slight differences of £20. We decided to go for a hotel near Body Worlds but others were located literally two doors down or either side of the station.

Total – £498.78

Split between us = £249.39

TOTAL HOLIDAY COST – £344.28 pp

*This was done on one booking with Expedia. 

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