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6 Mistakes to Avoid When Booking Travel Online

Having the ability to book our travel online has allowed us to take control of many aspects of the booking process. This includes searching for prices that suit us, being provided with alternative travel dates, times, routes and more.

With this freedom comes the ability to make mistakes, ones which we can control, and some we can be more aware of to help future bookings. 

In this article, we highlight six common mistakes when booking travel online, and how travel insurance can help. 

1. Not clearing your web browser cookies first

Have you noticed that many websites appear to know who you are, and what you have looked at previously, even without being logged in? This is due to the cookies on websites which identifies you. These are useful in most circumstances such as adding items to a cart without logging in, or targeted ads, but not so great with booking holidays. 

Whilst there has been no confirmation of this, there has been great evidence to support that the details of your browser history can lead to higher airfares. It has even been discussed that the type of computer you use can alter it, with pricier hotels being shown to Mac users, allegedly. 

If you have looked up a route multiple times, the website believes you are interested in purchasing and that you may be willing to pay a little more for it. Clearing your cookies can help wipe tracked information. 

We can’t grantee that it will change the price, but many believe it does. 

2. Only checking specific travel dates or travelling at the weekend

Many people travel abroad for leisure between Friday and Sunday, so this is when flight prices tend to be a little more expensive. If you can travel on different dates you may save a huge amount. 

Michelle here in the HCI office decided to stay 1 extra day after a weekend trip and flew home on a Monday, rather than a Sunday. The price of the Monday flight was so much cheaper, the difference even covered the cost for a hotel room for the additional night! 

3. Not researching multiple travel sites

You may be used to getting the best prices or the best service from a few particular sites in the past, but this may mean you are missing out on better prices elsewhere. Each site is built differently and will have varying algorithms. A search on a new or different site may throw up different places or, better yet, lower prices! Make sure you have one last shop around before you buy. 

4. Not estimating additional flight costs

You may be tempted to book the cheapest flight you can find, but very often these prices rise considerably when you take into account things such as luggage costs, seat booking fees etc.  

When looking at flight prices, try and estimate additional costs you may be presented with. The more expensive flight option may include all additional fees and may work out cheaper in the end.

5. Not double-checking everything

Clicking that exciting ‘book now’ button without checking everything thoroughly could cost you. Your flight booking must match your passport details exactly for instance.

Also, double-check the airport code and check it is the one you want (many cities have more than one airport!), double-check the contact information and so on.

One area we regularly hear people slip up are flights that are in the early hours or just after midnight, with many booking the wrong day due to the slight confusion!

6. Not booking travel insurance as soon as you pay for any other bookings

Have you ever booked a particular ‘non-cancellation’ room rate because it was the best price? What happens if you are unable to travel, such as from illness?  

By taking out travel insurance as soon as you pay for any part of your trip, you are covered for special circumstances that may prevent you from travelling. It does not only cover you once you have started your journey.

Our comprehensive travel insurance policies are affordable and exactly what you need for your journey. You can take a look at them here and even get a quote.