March 10, 2009

Travel Deals, Flight Searches and Hotel Reviews - Oh My Metasearch!

It sure looks like the poor exchange rate for my dollar is going to be lasting longer than I thought. Which is depressing because it is so fun when travel bargains are found. Will this stop me from traveling? I'm not sure to be honest but probably not. Getting out and about is a huge priority for me, even if it is just out into my community - though further afield would bring me closer to my dream destinations of New Zealand, Iceland and India, to name a few.

Recently the urge to get on a plane has been high. With a friend's recent wedding and honeymoon in Dubai, the Maldives and India, the travel bug settled into my bloodstream. Seeing the cute kids win for Slumdog Millionaire furthered my descent into currency exchange math - which I am not so good at. Cue the headache commercial...

Is it responsible to charge the cost of a trip or should we move to the habits of our parent's and grandparent's generations, waiting until we have the cash, then travel or spend our money period? It wasn't that long ago that the credit card did not exist. We are being told everyday that part of the current economic problem is our fault - that we used more credit than we should have and saved less than we should have.

The travel site that I write for, recently wrote about the evolution of metasearch from flight prices to hotel reviews - then wrote a review after testing the metasearch sites of UpTake, VibeAgent, HotelsCombined, Trivago, TripAdvisor and Travelpost. Clearly trip planning takes more research today if we want to get accurate prices and the best deals.

This exercise got me to thinking that maybe there are bargains to be found out there, we just have to try harder to find them. Maybe if we put a little more effort into the metasearch process we could still find a way to travel - to get out and about - without taking on more debt?

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