Technology can be a wonderful thing. It seems that everywhere you look there are automatic alerts that draw your attention to a variety of topics geared to your interests. We’re also seeing alerts you can set to help with travel planning – both before and after you reserve a trip. Here are six travel alerts we think are worth taking the time to set-up.
- Before you reserve
Whether it’s a flight, hotel, car rental, cruise or vacation package, you likely have a price drop alert option. Most travel aggregators and Online Travel Agents (OTAs) have equipped their search sites to offer price alerts. You’ll want to sign up for these alerts to know if there has been a price drop and whether it’s worth booking now or holding on for a further reduction.
For flights, OppteeTM Travel Search will alert you when carriers, aggregators and online travel agents (OTAs) lower their prices.
To set a flight price alert using Opptee:
- Download Opptee
- Select Flights on the Opptee dial
- Input flight search criteria
- Click on the price notification (bell) icon in the upper right corner
- Select ‘+’ sign
- Click ‘ok’ to confirmation pop-up
After you Reserve
- Flight and Hotel Price Alerts
Do Not Pay is a free service that scans the terms of your ticket finding clauses that permit you to re-book at a lower price. In North America, there is a 24-hour window permitting cancellation of tickets without a fee but it’s rare for someone to go back and re-check their prices after booking. Now you can and with a 30 second set up routine, it’s an automatic notice. Do Not Pay also tracks flight changes, weather, cancelations and refundable tickets. Currently, this service is available only in the U.S.
For Canadians, Flight Network is a search site that offers Price Drop Protection. If the price drops after you’ve reserved, they offer a credit for that amount. You will need to check on your own for price drops and you can only request a price drop deal once per flight.
You can also be advised of price drops for hotels with Pruvo. To use Pruvo, just email your hotel confirmation to [email protected] and if the price drops, Pruvo will send you a notice to let you know your room type price has dropped. Their email will include a link to click and rebook the room at the lower price.
- Best Seat Alerts
When you booked your flight, you may not have been able to reserve the seat you wanted or you couldn’t get a seat beside the person you’re traveling with. If so, Expert Flyer will alert when your preferred seat comes available. To set an alert, go to Expert Flyer, enter your flight info, and enter the type of seat you want. The app will notify you when a seat you like is available.
- Airline Flight Notifications
After reserving a flight, most airlines offer a Flight Notification Alert. This alert notifies you about changes to your flight. Changes such as departure and arrival times, gate changes, cancelations, delays, and reminders. Sign up is simple and alerts can be sent to you by email or text message. As well, Kayak has just announced flight notifications for Alexa-enabled devices. Here’s an example of Delta’s Flight Notification.
- Currency Exchange Alert
When exchanging money for travel, signing-up for a currency alert can help you receive a better rate. For instance, XE Currency Converter offers this service. You just register online (they call it a premium service, but there’s no cost) and you set alerts for one or more price points. If you set the alert on a computer, you’ll receive alerts by email. If you download their app, you receive alerts on your phone. https://www.xe.com/ratealerts/.
- Government Travel Alerts
Before leaving the country, it’s wise to register your plans with the U.S. State Department or Department of Foreign Affairs. This is a free service and allows the government to notify you in case of an emergency abroad or a personal emergency at home. The service also enables you to receive important information before or during a natural disaster or civil unrest. Canadians can register at: Registration of Canadians Abroad and for U.S. citizens: Smart Traveler Enrollment Program.
When you use travel alerts like these, your trips will be less expensive, more enjoyable, safer, and give you peace of mind that you received the best travel experience at the most cost-effective price.
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