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Personal Finance
9 money-saving travel tips to keep in mind when you’re planning a vacation
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9 money-saving travel tips to keep in mind when you’re planning a vacation

9 money-saving travel tips to keep in mind when you’re planning a vacation

9 money-saving travel tips to keep in mind when you’re planning a vacation

Seasoned bargain hunters know how to stretch a dollar and still enjoy the finer things in life. When it comes to travel season, we believe a key ingredient to a good time is not necessarily the amount of money you spend on your trip, but how much you save.

Ready to save some time and money? Here are some travel tricks and tips we’ve collected over the years.

10 travel tips & tricks to help save you money

1. When should you book that flight?

Conventional wisdom used to say that Wednesday or Thursday was the best day of the week to find affordable airfare. But a new study reveals a different answer.

The lowest average ticket price for both economy and premium airfares can generally be found on Sundays, according to the ARC 2018 Air Travel Outlook Report. There are also some other factors to consider.

2. Make the company keep its public promise

A lot of times, customers can get what they want by making a company stand by what it has written in black in white. As travel blogger Christopher Elliott points out, “Too often, customers forget that they can lean on the public promises, the “customer commitments” and the advertising slogans when they’re up against a rigorous legal contract. For example, did you know Delta Air Lines promises to offer you “the lowest fare available”?  That Avis pledges a “stress-free car rental experience” in its corporate mission statement? And that Carnival Cruises even assures it will do “everything it can to give our guests a lifetime of memories”?

3. How to avoid the airlines’ carry-on baggage fee

The major airlines are cracking down on passengers who try to flout their carry-on baggage fees. But before you start throwing out of your suitcase many of the must-have items you want to take on your trip, there may be a way to pack what you want and keep the flight affordable at the same time. The key is in a technique called “bundle wrapping,” which allows you to fold your clothes in the most efficient way possible.

4. Here’s one thing you should NEVER put on social media

Cybersecurity experts say untold numbers of travelers are going on social media and taking pictures of their boarding passes. If you search the hashtag #boardingpass on any social networking, you see people posting sensitive info on their boarding passes, including flight number, date and barcode.

The travel site Tripzilla says this about the faux pas: “More often than not, the information that is obtained by decoding your boarding pass barcode is enough for one to log on to your profile on the airline’s website and obtain your flight information. Beyond that, the stranger with a decoder can even cancel your flight, change your seats, get your home address and based on your frequent flyer number, even track your past and future flight records.”

5. Google is your (travel) friend

Whenever you’re searching online for cheap flights, always use certain words that could yield savings. Google terms like “discount” “coupon” and “code” when looking for a city to travel to — you might be be surprised what you’ll find.

6. What the pros use to find cheap flights

Sites like Google Flights, Orbitz and Kayak use the software created by a  Massachusetts company that has partnered with Google. It’s legacy site, matrix.itasoftware.com, is still up and running, though, complete with easy-to-use interface to find the cheapest fares out there.

7. Trick the airline site to get cheaper fares

If you prefer to buy plane tickets straight from the airline, it’s always good to access the site in incognito mode or delete cookies on your computer or device. Airlines have been known to generally bump up fares if you search for the same route on the same electronic device. Here’s how to delete cookies on your computer.

8. Only buy this type of travel insurance

Travel insurance is designed to protect the consumer in the event that a company, tour operator or airline defaults. But when it comes to weather, different companies vary widely on what they’ll cover.

“You really have to survey the marketplace to see if your particular weather circumstance will be covered,” money expert Clark Howard says. “A lot of the insurance policies offer false hope on that front. That’s why you have to read the policy before you buy it.”

Also, you want to always buy travel insurance that is independent of the company you’re traveling with. Oftentimes, the trip insurance sold by the trip organizer is skewed to protect them — not you.

9. Travel takes two (documents)

You may be pretty good about keeping your most sensitive documents with you when abroad, but Murphy’s Law is international. That means you’re better off if you have a duplicate of any documents you travel with. The U.S. State Department website says: “Make two copies of all of your travel documents in case of emergency, and leave one with a trusted friend or relative.”

To find the latest travel deals, visit our sister site ClarkDeals.com.

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News

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  • Kenny Dixon, the longtime drummer for Georgia-raised country music star Kane Brown was killed in a car accident, the band confirmed Sunday. >> Read more trending news  Dixon was from Dalton, Georgia. It's unclear where the crash happened but his bandmates say he died Saturday. 'It is with profound sadness and disbelief that we confirm we lost our drummer Kenny this weekend in a tragic car accident,' the band wrote in a statement. 'Kenny was a member of our family from the very beginning, and our hearts are with his fiancée Sarah, his son and everyone who knew and loved him. He was truly one of the greatest and kindest people on and off stage we’ve ever known.” Dixon's fiance, Sarah Hendrick, also confirmed the musician's death in an Instagram post on Sunday. 'I’m at a loss of words. I don’t even know how to write this or ever thought I would have to. Kenny passed away last night in a car accident. I know I have to be strong for Levi and God is gonna pull us through this. We have a forever guardian angel watching above us now. Please keep Levi, my family, and Kenny’s family in your prayers,' she wrote. Dixon and Hendrick were set to wed Nov. 30 in Dalton, according to the couple’s wedding website on The Knot. They were parents to a son, Levi. Brown also commented on the drummer’s death on social media.
  • A former University of Georgia student pleaded guilty Friday to running a Ponzi scheme that defrauded investors, including fellow students and their families, from his Athens fraternity house. >> Read more trending news  Syed Arham Arbab, 22, of Augusta, admitted to defrauding 117 people in a scheme that attracted about $1 million from investors, prosecutors said. A news release said Arbab spent funds on clothes, shoes, adult entertainment and gambling trips to Las Vegas. “The defendant engaged in a pattern of deceit to gain the trust of unwitting investors who gave him their hard-earned money for what they believed was a sound investment,” Charlie Peeler, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia, said in the release. From May 2018 to May of this year, Arbab sought investors for Artis Proficio Capital Management and Artis Proficio Capital Investments. Prosecutors said Arbab issued false account statements and misrepresented the size of the funds and returns. Among his false claims, prosecutors said, Arbab said a former UGA athlete and NFL star was among his investors. Arbab pleaded to a single count of securities fraud. He is scheduled for sentencing in January. In late May, the Securities and Exchange Commission initiated a civil complaint against Arbab, which is pending. In June, a federal judge froze Arbab’s assets and those of his investment funds. At the time, the SEC alleged Arbab defrauded at least eight investors of $269,000, but warned that the size of the scheme could be larger. In text messages, Arbab allegedly told investors his firm was “different because we target young investors/college kids,” and he charged lower commissions, the SEC complaint said. Arbab allegedly told investors he guaranteed investments of up to $15,000. The SEC said Arbab also sold “bond agreements,” which were like loans. Instead, Arbab allegedly deposited funds in his bank account and used new proceeds to pay off previous investors who sought money. A bio on the website for Artis Proficio stated that Arbab graduated cum laude from UGA with a degree in cellular biology, and that at the time, he working on a masters of business administration at UGA’s business school. Prosecutors said Arbab had in fact been rejected from the MBA program at UGA’s Terry College of Business.
  • When Stoneham firefighters arrived at a two-alarm fire around 12:30 p.m. Saturday, a woman living at the single-family home was on her roof overhang escaping the flames. >> Read more trending news   Stoneham police officers instructed her to jump from the overhang, and she was caught by Stoneham police officers Stephen Aprile and John Burton. She was the only person at the home at the time of the fire. 'Today marks the last day of Fire Prevention Week and the theme for this year covered how important it is for people to have an escape plan to get out of their home,' says Stoneham fire Chief Matthew Grafton. 'The resident who was at home at the time of (Saturday's) fire is an excellent example of someone who knew to find an available escape route and got herself safely out of the house as quickly as possible.' The fire was in the kitchen on the first floor and smoke was billowing from all windows. Crews from the Woburn, Melrose, Wakefield, Winchester and Reading fire departments helped on scene while Saugus, Medford and Malden firefighters helped with station coverage. Firefighters prevented the flames from spreading to the rest of the house, but the home sustained heavy damage from smoke and water, estimated at $150,000 to $200,000. The family of six who lived at the home is being helped by family and friends in the area. One dog was rescued and taken to a vet for evaluation. The cause of the fire is under investigation.
  • The final day of the Atlanta Air Show is canceled after a pilot ejected from a plane Sunday afternoon. The airshow began Saturday and was scheduled to continue Sunday afternoon at Tara Field near the Atlanta Motor Speedway in Hampton.  >> Read more trending news  Capt. Kevin Domon-Grenier, a pilot with the Canadian Forces Snowbirds, ejected from his aircraft shortly before the squadron was due to perform, the Snowbirds announced on Twitter on Sunday.  Domon-Grenier’s CT-114 Tutor crashed prior to the show’s opening, Airshow officials said. He made it safely to the ground and is OK, the CF Snowbirds said.  Nobody was injured when the plane crashed in an unpopulated area, according to the Snowbirds.
  • New Birth Missionary Baptist Church plans to redirect a donation it received from rap artist Kanye West to Atlanta’s Morris Brown College, officials said.  Rev. Jamal Harrison Bryant on Sunday announced a financial contribution to the HBCU’s general scholarship fund, according to a New Birth spokesman.  The announcement came during the 9:30 a.m.  church service. Bryant, senior pastor of New Birth in Stonecrest, said the funds  will be used to make a financial contribution in honor of the Grammy Award-winning artist’s late mother Donda West, who previously served on the faculty at Morris Brown.  The size of the donation wasn’t immediately announced. Morris Brown College has struggled financially since losing its accreditation in 2002. Only a few dozen students attend the college, down from as many as 2,700 in the mid-1990s. Among Historically Black Colleges and Universities, it is the only one in Georgia founded by African Americans. Kevin James, the college’s interim president, told New Birth’s congregation Sunday that Morris Brown was approved Friday as a higher learning institution by the Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission. He called it a “major step” toward accreditation.  “When you lose your accreditation, you close,” James said during the Sunday service. “But for some reason, for the past 17 years, Morris Brown College has been able to survive. We will be the first historically black college in history ... since 1837 to actually come back and be fully accredited under these circumstances.”   Kanye West visited New Birth Sept. 15 for a popup Sunday performance as a part of his “Sunday Service” series. Lines waiting outside New Birth began forming several hours before the service. RELATED: Kanye West brings ‘Sunday Service’ to Atlanta West has been making such appearances on Sundays this year, including one in Dayton, Ohio, to help that community in the wake of a mass shooting and on Easter Sunday to bring a message of faith to those attending the music festival Coachella. The announcement from New Birth came a day after West brought his Sunday Service series to Howard University, a prestigious HBCU in Washington, D.C.  It also came weeks after West defended his endorsement of President Donald Trump, whose support of HBCUs has been mixed.  MORE: HBCUs and Trump: up and down relationship “I went into prayer, and it dawned in me in prayer that Dr. Donda West, who was the mother of Kanye West, is a former professor at Morris Brown College,” New Birth’s Bryant said during Sunday’s service.  Donda West started her teaching career at Morris Brown College as an English instructor in the 1970s, and later became the department chair, according to an obituary. “I know what Dr. Donda West represented while at Morris Brown, and her mind for African American literature, was to empower, equip and engage students to be something radical that can change community and change society,” Bryant said.  In other news: