Tips for getting a good holiday deal in the January sales

Harriet Meyer / 24 December 2015 ( 13 December 2018 )

January is sales time for everything from household furniture to electrical goods, and also holidays. So if you’re planning on going away later in the year, it’s a good time to bag a holiday bargain.

Here are six tips for getting a good deal:

1. Check prices for flying on different days

While it’s great to opt for a discounted deal, you should check how this varies across different days. If you can be flexible with your arrangements, you might find prices slump even further.

Read Paul Lewis' guide to spending money when you are abroad

By shifting your holiday by just a few days, you may be surprised by the price difference. For example, travelling over weekends or on a Friday is typically far more expensive than arriving on a Tuesday.

2. Cut the extras

Transfers, supplements, and some meals may cost you extra. What do you really need? 

Avoid ticking those that aren’t essential, and you’ll reduce the price – unless you’re opting for a package deal with everything included. If you’ve got kids, find out if they can travel for free.

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3. Go to different operators

Get a price from one tour operator, and use it to haggle with another. Use online travel agent sites to find the best deals, and call another to see if they’ll beat the price. 

Five travel insurance traps to avoid

Be polite and charming, and simply ask if they’ll negotiate because you’ve seen the same holiday for far less elsewhere. If they won’t, try another.

Get great ideas for saving money, plus information on your consumer rights, pensions, tax and much more in our Money section.

4. Make sure you are comparing total costs

You want to ensure that any luggage prices and transfers are factored into the price, to compare like-for-like across a range of holiday deals. If you’re unsure what’s included, call and ask. 

All operators are battling to get your custom, but make sure the price isn’t masking the fact that – for example – you have to find your own way to the resort.

All inclusive holidays: what's not included

5. Book now for school holidays

The price for traveling over Easter and half term can skyrocket – and typically rise closer to departure times. If possible, booking now could save you forking out far more than necessary closer to the date. This compares to travel outside these periods, when some tour operators may struggle to fill places on flights and at hotels. 

For school holidays there are unlikely to be last-minute discount options.

Read our tips for booking a last-minute holiday

6. Sign up to email newsletters

If you can’t find the holiday you want, or don’t have the cash to book yet, use this time to see what’s available and sign up to newsletters. You may want to do this anyway to find out about future deals, so you can grab them when you can.

To get news of exclusive offers from Saga and its partners, sign up to our email or visit our travel pages for the latest deals

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The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated.

The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.