Booking a Last Minute Summer Holiday to Save Money

The last time we went to Florida was in May 2015, it was a planned holiday. We booked up over a year in advance and paid it off bit by bit. However, It was also a very expensive holiday (that was amazing), that resulted in us buying a tent for a cheap alternative to holidays abroad! I said that it would be a long time till we went back to the mouse! Then something changed.

Booking a Last Minute Summer Holiday

We’ll start off by saying Ten Grand Holiday. That’s right £10,000 for a holiday for four people for 2 weeks in Florida. This is stopping in a Disney Hotel (moderate Level), including flights, transfers,  park tickets, food and snack and a small amount of spending money. Ten Grand! It’s ridiculous.

Booking a last Minute Florida holiday

Then back in April, I clicked on a link in Hot UK Deals, which offered 2 weeks including flights, car hire and a hotel for £1,500 for all four of us if we could go mid-April. To compare that to a normal booked package to a Disney Hotel you’d normally be looking at around £5,000 upwards. So I started on a mission and have obsessed about it ever since. Looking for the last minute holiday to save around £4,000 to get back to Florida before I retire. This would have been great if I was ready to go next week. The issue I have is that we’re looking for the School Summer Holidays

Waiting as late as possible

According to Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis’s website, the optimum time to bag a bargain is around 10 – 8 weeks from the holiday date. Which also backs up a theory I have.

When you normally book up a year in advance you only have to pay a small deposit. So when it comes around to the final payment 8 weeks before you go, you have the final balance to pay. This is also the moment that people can walk away from a holiday. Many family circumstances could have changed resulting in an abandonned holiday.
Or the travel agency has prebooked a flight full of people and the plane is half empty. They need to fill it or it will cost them money.

As hard as it is predicting the future, I’ll speculate with an experiment. I’ll choose a random hotel including flights to Orlando today for a date in the summer holidays. Then nearer the time I’ll check the price again and see where we are.

Summer Holiday in Orlando

Lake Buena Vista Resort Village
14 Nights flying from Newcastle
Room Only
including Car Hire
2 Adults + @ Children
2 weeks in the School Summer Holidays.
£5314 (10th May 2018)

Booking a last minute Florida Holiday.

The resort looks good in the photos.

5 Tips for Booking a last minute Holiday

  1. Be flexible. If you’ve set your heart on a particular hotel, then you may be disappointed.
  2. Hold your nerve and start looking around 8 weeks before you want to go.
  3. Check the holiday comparison sites (Expedia) and the Holiday companies own sites (Tui) for offers.
  4. Speak to a travel agent. Online is great, but speaking to someone direct can unlock better offers.
  5. Be Prepared. If you’ve heald you nerve and booked to fly next week, it’s too late to renew your passport now!

So there is my challenge. If it works I’m off to Florida with the Family this summer. If it doesn’t, we’ll buy a new tent and find a piece of grass somewhere to pitch up.

I’ll update this post around 4 weeks before our holiday time to see if the tactic worked.
Fingers crossed.



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