There are many ways to save money on travel. One way I have discovered can make the different of $100s is to compare the same trip or components of a trip between different travel providers. One may have negotiated a better deal here, but another has a better deal there.
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
If you haven’t done much in the way of travel comparison, consider this a hands on lesson in how to compare travel across a couple of different providers. The providers I choose today are:
- Costco Travel
- BookingBuddy (affiliate link)
The three trips we are going to compare are:
- Walt Disney World, including airfare, park tickets, and a non Disney hotel property for 8 days, 7 nights traveling from Seattle, WA.
- Hawaii, including airfare, hotel, and car on the big island for 6 days, 5 nights traveling from Seattle, WA.
- Cabo San Lucas, including airfare, airport to hotel transfer, and all-inclusive hotel (and food and drinks) for 5 days, and 4 nights) traveling from Seattle, WA.
We will make sure we are comparing apples to apples. That means it will be the same airline and the same hotel across each travel provider, so we get a clear picture of savings. Next blog post, I will compare apples to oranges, meaning I will look for the best hotel (same star rating / same basic services) in the same class and best flight in the same class from each provider and see who comes out on top.
Trip 1: Walt Disney World: Departing September 9th and returning September 16th from Seattle, WA, for a family of 4. Hotel: Buena Vista Palace Hotel, Air Carrier: Alaska Air, Tickets: WDW 5 day park hopper tickets.
- Costco Travel Vacation Package (note: includes daily breakfast): $4418
- Expedia Vacation Package (note: does not include daily breakfast, the resort fee is not included): $4309
- BookingBuddy Vacation Package (note: no breakfast, resort fee not included): $4720
The Costco deal is the best.
Trip 2: Hawaii: Departing September 9th and returning September 15th from Seattle, WA, for a family of 4. Hotel: Royal Kona Resort Air: Alaska Car: Alamo
- Costco Travel: $3523
- Expedia: $3493
- BookingBuddy Vacation Package: (note: Avis rental car) $3731
Expedia won this round.
Trip 3: Cabo San Lucas: Departing September 9th and returning September 13th from Seattle, WA for 2 adults. Hotel: Royal Solaris Air: Alaska
- Costco Travel: $1572
- Expedia: $1707
- BookingBuddy Vacation Package: $1642
Costco wins again, but BookingBuddy beat Expedia this time.
As we can see, there is a $300 difference just between travel providers. It will be interesting to see next time the $$$ difference when we compare best of class for each provider.