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Geld sparen mit Last-Minute-Buchung, Bild: pim pic / shutterstock

Last minute on holiday: What you should pay attention to

Grey skies, rain and a gloomy mood: Cold and uncomfortable weather can drag down the mood quite a bit. Of course, the distance beckons with many hours of sunshine and great places. Early bookers can still enjoy the long anticipation of their upcoming holiday, while last-minute travellers would like to pack their bags immediately.

The German Travel Association defines last-minute holidays as trips that are taken within the next two weeks. However, those who want to book cheap last minute trips now should consider a few things in order to really be able to make the desired bargain.

Extensive research

Comparisons of different offers show whether the last-minute trip is really a bargain. Some offers are not as cheap as they seem at first glance.

For example, offers for the same trip from different tour operators can be compared on the websites of travel agencies. Price differences can thus be detected very quickly.

Continuous price monitoring

With regard to price comparisons, it is also worthwhile to observe the prices every day, because there is a great deal of price dynamics in the travel sector.

In particular, the prices of flights can differ greatly from one day to another. The development should therefore be observed for a few days.

The included services

In Germany , catalogue prices are subject to an obligation to indicate prices. Bait offers, which are ultimately much more expensive, are therefore not permitted.

However, if last-minute trips are quoted at significantly lower prices than originally stated in the catalogue, the included services may have changed. The price can be lower, for example, because no airport transfer or full board is included.

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The framework conditions

Turkey Beach
Fantastic views – not uncommon in Turkey – a popular last-minute destination, Image: Denis Belitsky / shutterstock

The general conditions can also be less favourable for last-minute trips. For example, it becomes more difficult to secure the trip.

Holidays that are booked at short notice often do not offer the possibility of free cancellation. The travel price is therefore usually due at 100 percent if the trip is cancelled a few days before the actual date. In addition, in many cases it is not possible to take out travel cancellation insurance. Nevertheless, some insurance companies offer special last-minute rates. However, these are hardly attractive in terms of price.

If the trip is to be started with children, families who are planning a last-minute holiday will also have to pay higher prices – they are dependent on holiday periods in which the prices are generally increased by the tour operators. Children’s discounts are also rather rare for last-minute trips.

Be flexible

Flexibility is another important factor in making the last-minute holiday a real pleasure. Families with children often do not have this flexibility, as they need longer preparation for the upcoming trip. Couples and singles, on the other hand, can quickly find a suitable holiday destination and spontaneously pack their bags.

The offers are often lower in price if inconvenient flight times or rather unpopular destinations are chosen. Good prices can be used, for example, especially when flights depart very early in the morning or late in the evening.

The general attitude also falls under the criterion of flexibility. If the main aim is to save money by booking a last-minute trip, there should be no disappointment if no suitable offer can be found. In some cases, it is better to wait a little longer and go back to looking for a spontaneous holiday at another suitable time.

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