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February 22, 2022

Travel alert: Avoid these common booking mistakes

University students across the land are on a reading break this week. But, for many families, the kids in big school don’t need a lot of care and feeding, travel-wise.

Travel In a few weeks though, the little kids get out – and then all hell breaks loose if you're looking to get away for a few days and not go bankrupt. 

The proliferation of hidden fees in recent years has made doing your pre-booking legwork more important than ever. Whether it's extra charges for checked baggage, overweight baggage, in-flight food, flying with a pet, or even carry-on bags, fees today can greatly inflate the cost of your ticket, often adding hundreds of dollars to a family trip. 

Tthe best defense is to factor in the fees each airline and hotal charges when comparing costs. Here are several instances in which fees are assessed and how to avoid them.

If you're thinking about a week at Disney or looking for simply looking for some guidance when it comes to booking airfare, hotels, and rental cars, here’s a quick refresher course on what not to do, courtesy of SmarterTravel

According to their research, here are the 10 most common travel booking mistakes.

1. Booking too soon
2. Booking too late
3. Not comparison shopping
4. Ignoring seasonality
5. Not reading reviews
6. Not reading the fine print
7. Not understanding the difference between direct and non-stop flights
8. Booking a too-tight connection
9. Not taking fees into account
10. Ignoring follow-up e-mails/alerts after booking

Do any of these apply to you? Where have you made improvements and how can others benefit?

By Gordon Powers, MSN Money



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Gordon PowersGordon Powers

A long-time fund company executive, Gordon Powers now heads up the Affinity Group, a financial services consulting firm. Gordon was a personal finance columnist for the Globe & Mail for many years, has taught retirement planning...

Jason BucklandJason Buckland

The modern-day MC Hammer of money, Jason can often be seen spending cash that isn’t his with the efficiency of a Wilt Chamberlain first date. After cutting his teeth as a reporter for the Toronto Sun, he joined the MSN Money team with...