Over here I talked about the holiday plans Deidre and I were making, to travel to Australia. It's been a relatively painful thing to do!
We've had to work out the dates that we were going to go there and return, as well as the dates that we'd be in Sydney, Adelaide, Canberra, Sydney, and back to Wellington. Three cities in 4 weeks, with countless family members and friends to see in that time.
Oh God, the pain!
A month or so ago we booked the return tickets to Australia. That was a struggle and a half… Tomorrow I'll be booking the domestic flights within Australia. Next month I'll be booking the car rental for those times we'll need it in Adelaide and Canberra, as well as miscellaneous hotel accommodation in various areas…
Do you know how hard it is to find good prices on websites for travel and stuff? There's so many different airlines that are all competing with each other, and then there's travel agency sites that tell you they'll get you a good deal. Hell, they're morons! We went through a travel agent a few months ago and they told us that the best deal we could get for return flights to Australia was NZ$2300. Interesting, I said (via email). I told them that I could get it at NZ$1600 via the actual airline website, so they need to do better than that. I never heard back from them.
All my research and investigation into best prices has been VERY painful, taking many hours to do. But you know what? I figure that by the time everything has been booked and paid for, we'll have saved at least NZ$2000 by doing it this way.
And spending that money to save the time? That's more painful than spending a few hours to find the best prices.
A friend of mine said that they were going to book a holiday to Fiji if their partner got a job, planning to leave the following weekend. They hadn't booked it yet. I was incredulous, and they said there's no difference in the prices. I researched it and found out that if they did it their way they would be spending close to NZ$3000, while if they booked it for at least 6 weeks later, they would be spending just over NZ$700. It was their turn to be incredulous.
Travel agents love people who don't research or know that savings are to be made. And savings are important! Why spend $3000 on an airfare when you can save $2300 and spend that on other things!!
Makes sense to me.
But anyway, the holiday's getting closer, and everything's getting sorted. One thing at a time. It's awesome to be getting closer to going back home.
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