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  • The Curious Traveler

To Woo Travelers, Airlines Slash Fares

Adventure Travel, there’s never been a better time.

While the current economic situation may have many of us wondering whether or not we will be able to take our yearly adventure abroad, there are a few things to consider before deciding against it. From a pure cost perspective, it has been at least a decade since there were such great travel values. If you can, now is a great time to take advantage of some of the byproducts of a poor economy. The dollar is stronger than it has been in quite some time, tour operators such as Boundless Journeys and the airlines are offering some significant savings due to decreased demand. For some it may be difficult to justify a walking trip through Tuscany, a hiking trip in Bhutan, or a wildlife safari in Botswana, but for those that are ready to seize the opportunity, this is a tremendous time to travel.

I’m always one whose looking for a good value, and here’s a radio segment I heard on NPR last night that got me thinking about where my next trip might be.

From NPR’s All Things Considered, March 9, 2009

The travel industry is hoping that any stimulus to the economy will mean more airline travel. As a result, airlines have slashed fares.

Rick Seaney, chief executive of Farecompare.com, tells NPR’s Michele Norris that right now is the best time in a decade to fly. That’s a huge reversal from last summer, when prices were among the highest.

“It’s completely flipped on its head in a short year,” he says.

Seaney also has several tips for people looking to travel on the cheap. One trick, he says, is to buy airline tickets on Tuesday afternoons. That’s the time he calls “the perfect sweet spot,” when the sales have come in and all the airlines have matched.

He also says the absolute cheapest days to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday, and that many of the lowest airfares come with rules stating that travelers can fly only on those days.

Listen Now to the complete interview [4 min 32 sec]

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