Best little-known travel deal websites

Andrew Mollenbeck, wtop.com

WASHINGTON – Along with good tidings and midnight toasts, the holidays can really bring about the need for a vacation.

Fortunately, there are a growing number of places to score a deal.

Travel websites have grown from simple queries looking for cheap getaways. Now, they offer a variety of custom options, including destinations based on budget and price alerts when a ticket drops after purchase.

Take, for example, Kayak.com/explore. Here, users can enter a travel budget, and the site returns a map of the world with destinations that fit the price range.

Yapta.com is insurance for those prone to buyer’s remorse. It tracks the price of a flight even after you purchase. If a fare drops enough to cancel out a change fee, you’ll get an email or tweet to rebook.

The New York Times has settled on a list of 19 travel websites that can save money this year.

For those travelers with some flexibility, Itasoftware.com shows the cheapest dates to fly (hint: you have to click “airfare search.”)

Priceline’s name-your-bid option has been popular for years. But now, the sites Biddingfortravel.com, Betterbidding.com and Biddingtraveler.com offer insider tips on bidding strategies to game the system.

Among the other recommendations from the New York Times:

  • HomeAway.com
  • Airbnb.com
  • Jetsetter.com/homes
  • YipIt.com
  • Cayole.com
  • Homeexchange.com
  • Luxurylink.com
  • Autoslash.com

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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