I asked Bob Diener, co-founder of Getaroom.com, to answer the following questions about baby boomer travel these days and to offer tips on using travel dollars wisely.
Rita: How can you find a cheap airline ticket?
Bob: It’s very important to pick the right days to fly. Air travel on Saturday, Tuesday, or Wednesday are the best bets to save money because they are much lower demand than other days, especially Friday and Sunday.
Another important tip is to check different airlines for both directions of your flight. There is no law saying you have to book the same airline for both your departing and return flights. By looking at different airlines you greatly expand your options, so you can find a southerly route in the winter and avoid possible weather delays. You can also save money by booking two one-way tickets instead of a typical round trip.
Rita: What can baby boomers do to reduce their travel costs in the United States? Abroad? What are some deals you can get in Europe this spring before the heavy tourist season sets in?
Bob: Baby boomers that want to reduce their costs should always look to book their rooms in far as advance as possible. Many sites such as Getaroom.com offer substantial discounts for vacations booked 21 or more days in advance. Savings can still be had for the spur of the moment trips by looking at flash sales or daily deal type websites that feature discounts that only last for hours or a day.
Las Vegas is very popular for this generation, and some four-star rooms can be booked in Sin City for only $100 a night. Europe trips through the end of May offer some significant discounts compared to deeper summer travel. Paris, London, and Tuscany are attractive boomer destinations that are very cost effective in July and August.
Rita: What are the top five travel destinations for boomers?
Bob: New York City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Miami, and Washington D.C. are all top destinations for baby boomers. Each of these destinations offers upscale accommodations for surprisingly affordable prices.
Rita: Are more boomers traveling now since the Great Recession is easing?
Bob: Baby boomers have seen their retirement and investment accounts growing in the past year, and this has freed up much more money for them to travel. There’s also less pressure on their children as the economy improves, so they’re worrying less and can spend more cash on longer and more expensive trips both domestically and internationally.
Rita: Thank you, Bob, for giving us your insights on baby boomer travel.