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Reply to "Are cheap travel options really worth it?"

"So, I’m curious. What is your approach to cutting costs when you travel? Are you all about budget transportation? Or would you prefer to dial back experiences at your destination?"

It really depends on how many points I have at the time. But for the most part, I wouldn't ever fly Spirit or anything like that because those airlines are known to have hours upon hours of delay. I'd fly cheap with Southwest for example because I don't feel the experience there differs much from United. There are a few things to consider for me when saving vs. comfort for travel:

1. How many points do I have? If I have a ton of points, I can have a business / first class flight internationally, stay in high-end hotels, *and* not have to pay much (generally just pay the sales tax).

2. If I don't have a ton of points, can I do a hybrid approach where I pay half my trip with cash, and the other half with points? If so, I probably will just fly economy and use those points + existing points to book nice hotels. Then, I'd book whatever days are left in my travel days with cash. And depending how much expensive the hotels are, and how many points I have left after spending it on hotels, I'd stay anywhere between 3-5 star hotels.

3. If I don't want to use any points at all, I'd generally spend to get the minimum amount of comfort that's acceptable to me + save time. For example, Southwest is not only more comfortable than Spirit on average, but would save time on average. Paying for TSA Pre at $20/yr will save many hours/yr on average. The way I view it is if I have to spend a lot of time waiting in line or waiting for delayed/cancelled flight, that's costing me way more than the plane ticket to begin with so it isn't worth it, both from an intangible / comfort perspective and also from a financial one.

So in general, unless I really don't want to use points, I'm just going to splurge on travel because I don't travel often. Much rather be frugal the rest of the time instead.

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https://goodmoneygoodlife.com

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