Discovering the perfect holiday destination that is something a little bit out of the ordinary might prove a bit tricky; if it is a family break, it has to be exciting for both adults and kids, and if we are talking an anniversary or trip with your best friend, it needs to have that special flair. But in both cases, it has to be somewhat exotic while not breaking the bank. It is a lucky thing then that Brits benefit from having numerous international airports at our disposal; here are our top tips for choosing an exotic yet inexpensive travel destination!

Always plan ahead

Always plan ahead

Airplane Is your Best Bet

When flying somewhere offbeat, the easiest way to get there is by air travel – and usually, the cheapest, too. There are several websites like Skyscanner where you can browse between offers from a variety of air companies flying from the overall 24 commercial airports serving UK residents – the busiest of which is London Heathrow, which served more than 73 million passengers in 2014 alone. London Gatwick comes in second, followed by Manchester and another two of London’s several airports – Stansted and Luton. So, when trying to find a cheap flight, start by looking at the busiest airports; they are bound to have more variety and thus more fluctuation in prices.

Know Thy Airlines

Try your luck with budget airlines first but always remember to also check the big names: especially if you book a bit late, budget airline prices might be so high that it would actually make sense to enjoy the perks of flying non-budget for a few extra quid. According to Skyscanner, budget airline Easyjet is actually the first in terms of the number of passengers served each year, while British Airways has the largest fleet and flies to over 160 destinations. Ryanair is also a safe bet when it comes to low fares while, for seasonal holidays (summer in the sun or winter breaks in ski resorts), try airlines like Thomas Cook Airlines, Thomson Airways, Monarch Airlines and Jet2. Virgin Atlantic also offers intercontinental flights.

Search for the Offers

Keep an eye out for special holiday offers from travel agencies: while they might feel a bit more tourist-y, they are a great way to save money as they usually include sightseeing tickets and meals, which they can save because they book in large numbers. Subscribing to a few agency newsletters might be a good idea to catch wind of last-minute great offers, but beware of fake offers and online risks like phishing, a popular hacking method to steal your personal data, such as login credentials and credit card numbers. Attackers might pretend to send a link from a trusted source to dupe you into opening an email or text message and clicking a malicious link that installs malware. So, if an offer looks too good to be true or if something feels off with the layout of an email, always double check.

Always Plan Ahead

Always start planning your trip at least six months in advance: that will give you time to do your research regarding airfares and accommodation prices, and make arrangements accordingly. For example, you may find that a certain flight is almost half the price if you book for the week earlier than the one you wanted or that the accommodation you want will give you a weekly discount if you stay a day longer. Arranging in advance gives you time to update plans with your loved ones or rearrange your annual leave to take advantage of the cheapest offers. Make a list of the steps you need to take to ensure that you have taken everything into account – for instance, if flying overseas, you might need to make visa arrangements or buy health insurance.

So, if you have a knack for the exotic but thought you could not make it, better think again. Pick an off-season period, research your options, and find the perfect budget deal for you – there is no reason why you should compromise on your well-earned holiday break!

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