Economy travel is the norm for many of us nowadays. But it doesn’t mean that our voyage has to be anything less than a first class experience. Our seat may not be within 5 metres of the plane entrance and, yet, does it really matter for 200 minutes? It’s the value for the money we pay that’s important. Economy travel may mean a narrower stewardess smile, 20 grams less food, 10 centimetres less leg room, and no glass of champagne. In return, you’ll get €700.00 knocked off the price of first/business class to travel economy/coach class. That could equal your entire hotel cost.
Economy travel doesn’t just involve a change in the name of the level of service. Huge price variations also exist for the same airplane seat, the same hotel, the same hotel room, or the same train seat. It just requires planning to get the best deal. You can easily pay for economy travel only, but get supreme service, if you do prior research. Before emptying your bank account, can you exchange your Air Miles for the journey? If so, you’ll need to redeem them well in advance. All airlines severely limit Air Mile seat numbers per flight.
You can pay for economy travel for a finer deal by using the train, instead of the plane. Nowadays, I find the train is the best way to travel in Europe and many parts of the U.S. Rail departure/arrival is right in the city centre, at decent times, with no baggage limitations, no tedious security checks, and beautiful scenery passing by every minute of the journey. Economy travel seating on the train is spacious and there are no restrictions on phone use. WiFi for tablet PCs, laptops, and smartphones is available on many routes. Economy travel means having all the facts available to you for optimal decision making. Are you aware of the holiday discount structure for 2 people, 3 people, children, and groups? Rail travel is almost free, or at ridiculously low prices, in certain European countries during school holidays to get the kids outside and to keep the train workers occupied.
Economy travel discounts of 75% or €6.00 paid per ticket is common in France during school vacation periods for journeys of 100km to 200km. It’s important to compare the actual airline sites, as well as the travel sites that propose multiple airlines. I always, without exception, find that actual airline sites are cheaper.
Economy travel means being aware of the premiums paid for arbitrary choices. For example, are you aware of how much extra that you have to pay for a beach view, river view, or park view? If you only sleep in the hotel then do you really appreciate the supplement paid for the outside scenery? Are you aware of how much extra you pay to travel; on Monday, on Friday, at a particular airport, during July/August? If you just need a break and are not bothered about the destination then use the tour operator promotions.