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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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  • A jury has acquitted Michael Rosfeld Friday night in the trial of the white former police officer who shot and killed an unarmed black teen fleeing a high-stakes traffic stop outside Pittsburgh. >> WPXI LIVE UPDATES: Michael Rosfeld Trial Rosfeld was charged with homicide for shooting Antwon Rose Jr. during a traffic stop last June. Rose was riding in an unlicensed taxi that had been involved in a drive-by shooting when Rosfeld pulled the car over and shot the 17-year-old in the back, arm and side of the face as he ran away. The panel of seven men and five women — including three black jurors — saw video of the fatal confrontation, which showed Rose falling to the ground after being hit. The acquittal came after fewer than four hours of deliberations on the fourth day of the trial. The Rose family’s attorney, S. Lee Merritt, had urged a murder conviction, saying before closing arguments that it’s “pretty obvious” Rose was not a threat to Rosfeld. Rose’s death — one of many high-profile killings of black men and teens by white police officers in recent years — spurred protests in the Pittsburgh area last year, including a late-night march that shut down a major highway. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • A photo taken of a mother and daughter on the flight deck of an Atlanta-bound Delta Boeing 757 has gone viral. >> Read more trending news The duo, Capt. Wendy Rexon and First Officer Kelly Rexon, can be seen smiling ear-to-ear at the helm of the duel-engine Boeing 757, which seats around 170 passengers. The photo was taken by Dr. John R. Watret, the chancellor of Embry-Riddle Worldwide, a world-renowned aeronautical university, who just happened to overhear that there was a mother-daughter flight crew. According to a release from the university, Watret, who was a passenger on the flight, overheard a mother and kids coming from the cockpit talking about the “mother and daughter” flying the passenger airliner. “I thought that was amazing. I was in awe. I asked if I could visit them, too,” he said in the press release.   This was especially meaningful for Watret because of Embry-Riddle’s commitment to creating more opportunities for women in all areas of the aviation industry. “There has to be more diversification in the industry. It’s crucial and one of the key factors we focus on. When there are more opportunities, everyone wins,” Watret said in the release. Delta airlines official twitter account also replied to his tweet: Kelly Rexon’s sister is also a pilot, according to the release from Embry-Riddle.
  • Tulsa firefighters have returned a cat to its owner after it hitched a ride in a car for about 100 miles. Officials said they were called to rescue a cat but quickly learned it wasn't 'your typical cat stuck in a tree call.' They believe the cat jumped into the car's undercarriage in Mustang, Oklahoma, and likely rode along near the engine. The driver said he heard a noise that he thought was his child's video game, but it turned out to be the meowing cat. >> Read more trending news Firefighters made calls to the Mustang area to see if anyone had reported a lost cat and eventually found the family. They drove up to Tulsa on Friday to collect the cat, whose name is Snickers. KOKI-TV was at the fire station Friday for the reunion.
  • Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said in a letter on Friday that the city council’s attempt to have her administration investigated for potentially misusing city funds to hire her campaign staff was itself unlawful. Bottoms specifically pointed to a sentence in a resolution that the council approved on Monday that authorized the ethics officer and auditor to hire an outside law firm to assist with an investigation. “A grant of authority to hire legal counsel, such as is contained in the Resolution, violates the City of Atlanta Charter,” Bottoms wrote. “The Charter designates the City Attorney as the chief legal advisor of the city.” The letter represents an escalation of a power struggle over the mayor and city council’s respective roles to help restore public trust amid an ongoing federal probe into corruption at city hall. The resolution requesting the investigation came in response to an Atlanta Journal-Constitution article published last weekend. The article found that six Bottoms campaign staff members were issued payments for a pay period in December 2017, before the city had formally offered them jobs. That article reported that political supporters of the mayor were given job titles based on desired salaries, not their job qualifications or responsibilities. And it found that Bottoms’ former campaign manager Marva Lewis was briefly made an Airport Deputy General Manager and received payments out of airport funds, in possible violation of FAA regulations. The council resolution approved on Monday requested that the auditor and ethics office to determine if the manner in which campaign staff were hired violated city code, state law, the state constitution or Federal Aviation Administration regulations. City Auditor Amanda Noble confirmed to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Friday that she and the ethics office had initiated an investigation. Noble declined to address the contents of Bottoms’ letter. Council President Felicia Moore said resolution was not a binding order, but an expression of the council’s will to see the matter reviewed by the city’s oversight officers. She said the auditor and ethics officer are independent and have the discretion to investigate matters of their choosing. “The law department may have to assist in their getting outside counsel,” Moore said. “The reality is that neither the ethics officer nor the auditor need the council’s resolution to conduct a review.” Moore said one could read the resolution’s call for the ability to hire outside counsel as an implied request for the city’s law department to cooperate with the investigation. The law department, at least in theory, reports to both the mayor and the council. Bottoms has until early next week to decide if she will sign the proposal or veto it. If she doesn’t act eight days after it was passed, the resolution is automatically adopted. The mayor’s letter, which mentions a possible veto, was itself a veiled threat that she may take such action against a resolution that she claims violates the city’s charter. The letter itself seemed to be a preemptive attempt to call into question an investigation, which she claims grew out of a resolution that violates the city’s charter, would be allowed to move forward. Bottoms said that because of the resolution the auditors and ethics officer’s findings “would be rendered useless due to their unlawful origin.” Moore sees no reason why an investigation shouldn’t move forward. “As far as them doing their review and having the access to all city records, there should be no reason why that would change,” Moore said. “They already have the authority.”
  • Here is the letter Barr sent to leaders in Congress after he received the results of special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible Russian Collusion during the 2016 presidential election. Dear Chairman Graham, Chairman Nadler, Ranking Member Feinstein, and Ranking Member Collins: I write to notify you pursuant to 28 C.F.R. 600.9(a)(3) that Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller III has concluded his investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election and related matters. In addition to this notification, the Special Counsel regulations require that I provide you with “a description and explanation of instances (if any) in which the Attorney General” or acting Attorney General “concluded that a proposed action by a Special Counsel was so inappropriate or unwarranted under established Departmental practices that it should not be pursued.” 28 C.F.R. 600.9(a)(3). There were no such instances during the Special Counsel’s investigation. The Special Counsel has submitted to me today a “confidential report explaining the prosecution or declination decisions” he has reached, as required by 28 C.F.R. 600.8(c). I am reviewing the report and anticipate that I may be in a position to advise you of the Special Counsel’s principal conclusions as soon as this weekend. Separately, I intend to consult with Deputy Attorney General Rosenstein and Special Counsel Mueller to determine what other information from the report can be released to Congress and the public consistent with the law, including the Special Counsel regulations, and the Department’s long-standing practices and policies. I remain committed to as much transparency as possible, and I will keep you informed as to the status of my review. Finally, the Special Counsel regulations provide that “the Attorney General may determine that public release of” this notification “would be in the public interest.” 28 C.F.R. 600.9(c) I have so determined, and I will disclose this letter to the public after delivering it to you. Sincerely, William P. Barr Attorney General