Reasons to book a spring break trip now

Spring break is a great time to travel. As the gloom of winter gives way to sunshine and warmer temperatures, a vacation is the ultimate reset. And, with plenty of spring break travel deals, now is a great time to book your vacation.

Regardless of whether you’re planning to go overseas or overseas, here are five reasons why you might want to book your flights and hotel stays now.

There aren’t many positives about the Covid-19 pandemic cloud we’ve been living in, but one of the few good news is that major US airlines – American, Delta and United – have lowered exchange rates on most domestic and many international itineraries departing from North America. (Exact policies vary by airline, so be sure to do your research on your airline’s free rules.)

The only exception is the basic economy fares – both Delta and United state that no basic economy ticket is eligible for their no change policy. American Airlines states that any base economy ticket purchased on or after April 1, 2021 is non-refundable or non-changeable.

(Also, we give credit here to Southwest, which never had basic economics or exchange rates in the first place. If you’re looking for a passenger-friendly airline, Southwest continues to have some of the best policies of all carriers. US, including easily changeable tickets and free checked baggage.)

This does not mean that all airline tickets are suddenly refundable. There is a big difference between “changeable” and “refundable”. Basically, the new policies mean that you can change your ticket before departure and not have to pay an additional fee. But unless you specifically pay more for a refundable flight, you still can’t get your money back on most tickets unless there’s a cancellation by the airline itself.

And even if there are no more flight change fees, you will still have to pay any difference between the original fare you purchased and the price of the new ticket if it is higher. Conversely, if the price of your new flight is lower, both American and Delta will credit you the difference. (United puts this in their pocket, so keep this policy in mind when choosing an airline.)

However, the new rules offer a lot more flexibility and make it more interesting to go ahead and book as there is no risk of losing your money if you can’t end up traveling for spring break. It also means that it is worth blocking a lot for the future if you find one. Speaking of which…

After a sharp rise in travel during the summer of 2021, demand started to decline again in the fall, so airlines are eager to get people to book travel again. And while you may not be ready to get on a plane right now, you can take advantage of the offers now for travel in the future, for this year’s summer or perhaps even for spring break 2023.

What kind of offers can you get? Well, just as an example, as of this writing, New Yorkers can travel to sunny Miami (MIA) for a week during the spring break period for just $ 83.20 round trip. And for those on the west coast looking for a Hawaiian vacation, there are direct flights over the spring break period from Los Angeles to Hawaiian Island destinations starting at $ 199 round trip with American and United.

iStock

With a number of international borders now reopened and several countries welcoming fully vaccinated Americans, you might even consider traveling overseas. As of February 11, England no longer requires a quarantine or any type of Covid-19 test for fully vaccinated Americans. (Unvaccinated Americans will need to take a pre-departure test and a PCR test within two days of arriving in England.) Right now we’re also seeing round-trip rates from New York to London in March from $ 469.17 with JetBlue.

To find cheap airline tickets, use Google Flights or an online travel agency to search for trips, or sign up for notifications from a site offering offers such as Scott’s Cheap Flights or Thrifty Traveler. Or try a data-driven app like Hopper to find the perfect time to book.

And if you’ve been sitting on a pile of frequent flyer miles, now may be the time to use them. While rewards availability is generally more open than it has been in years as airlines try to fill seats, you may have a harder time finding availability during the spring break period. Before committing to buying a ticket outright using cash, we recommend that you check to see if you can find availability for those points and miles. Set aside some time to search the airline’s website and see what kind of mileage offers are displayed.

The demand for travel to the United States has increased and will continue to do so

Since the end of last year, foreigners from Europe, the UK, Ireland, China, Iran, Brazil, South Africa and India have been able to enter the country. As a result, the United States has seen a massive influx of tourists, mostly from Europe.

Although that demand declined slightly in the winter months as new variants and other developments led to confusion and hesitation, demand from abroad is expected to pick up again this spring and summer. According to Deloitte’s travel outlook for 2022, international tourists should head to top-tier destinations in the United States first before heading off the beaten path.

Just because there is expected to be greater demand for travel to the United States doesn’t mean business will disappear completely – industry leaders predict that business travel, which is the most profitable part of the market for airlines, will not return. completely for several years. But the planes are likely to be fuller than they are right now.

Even with variable flights, there may still be some aspects of a trip that are difficult or impossible to change and you don’t want to lose money if you get sick and can’t travel.

You could purchase a travel insurance policy to cover yourself in case the worst happens, but they can be expensive and not all of them will cover claims related to the pandemic. Fortunately, a cheaper and better way to protect yourself may already be in your purse or wallet: your credit card.

Many travel credit cards include various forms of travel protection, such as travel cancellation and curtailment coverage, travel accident insurance, emergency evacuation coverage, and more. While these protections generally don’t cover you if you voluntarily cancel your trip due to the pandemic, they often do cover you if you personally get sick from the coronavirus or are unable to travel due to unforeseen restrictions put in place by a government authority.

Each credit card offers different levels of coverage, and some have no travel protection at all, so it’s important to check the fine print before booking your trip with a specific credit card to know exactly what you’re protected against. But if you want to make sure your travel investment is safe, choose the right credit card to book your spring break trip.

After the past couple of years, with many stranded at home and not yet ready to travel, spring break may be the perfect way to unwind. Whether you’re reuniting with friends for a week-long beach hotel stay or driving to reunite with family in a mountain cabin, a vacation is the perfect thing to look forward to.

By booking a trip now, you will have something to expect from here to spring break. Taking care of your mental health is just as important as taking care of your physical health, and the idea of ​​an upcoming trip can help you get over the slog.

iStock

And even with all of the above in mind, if you’re not comfortable booking future trips at the moment, don’t worry about that either. Many people don’t have a family or work schedule that is flexible enough to afford to book speculative travel with so many unknowns still out there.

If that’s you, there’s one more thing you can do while you wait for your travel to resume – earn extra travel rewards on your credit card. Many cards offer high sign-up bonuses to new cardholders, including up to 130,000 bonus points and free nights on Hilton credit cards and 100,000 on American Express’s premium card.

These bonuses alone can be enough to book a trip when you’re comfortable getting back out there. Plus, you can use a credit card to earn rewards on everyday things you buy while at home.

So, if you’re not quite ready to book a spring break trip but want to make sure you have enough frequent flyer points or miles to go somewhere great when you finally are, check out our list of the best credit cards. travel and see if any of them might be right for you.