If – like the Griswold family in the comedy classic, European Vacation – you have been planning a trip to the continent, you’ve no doubt spent at least a little time researching plane fares and destinations. One popular choice for many couples and families is to visit Rome, Italy.
Once the center of one of the mightiest empires in history, and the current headquarters for the world’s one-billion people strong Catholic Church, the city of Rome is the perfect place to visit if you want to experience all that the continent has to offer in both ancient and modern sights, sounds, and tastes. Flights to Rome are available on many airlines, and competition between those companies can often make it fairly easy to find rates that are affordable.
Forget the travel agencies
If you want to spend more than you should, then be sure to utilize a travel agency to book your flight. The fact is that most of the major agencies are so tied to the airlines that any discounts they appear to offer are more than likely manipulated rates. In other words, the price is raised before they are lowered. More than that, the relationship between the airlines and travel agencies means that there is less competition for prices than you need there to be if you are going to find affordable rates. Flights to Rome shouldn’t cost a fortune – the city is expensive enough as it is.
Saving money is important
Sure, it would be nice to be able to shell out whatever fare rate the airline wants to charge for flights to Rome, but the reality is that most of us cannot afford to do that. And when you consider the high costs of visiting Italy, it is easy to see how every little penny saved on air fare can reap huge dividends by leaving you more money to actually spend on your vacation stay. Rome has a great many free attractions to see, including some of the most famous landmarks in the world, but there are museums and theaters – as well as fine restaurants – that you will want to visit as well.
Get your hotel in advance
Book your hotel as far in advance as you can. In fact, book everything in advance if you can, since that is one of the easiest ways to ensure that you get to take advantage of the absolute best rates available. Hotel rates can be had at significant savings when you book them six or more months away from your actual visit. Flights to Rome are similar in this respect. Since the airlines are always keen to know where their next passenger will come from, they sometimes offer big discounts for booking flights months into the future.
Small airlines are the key
If you really want to save big on your flights to Rome, then find a smaller airline that offers trans-Atlantic flights. Smaller airlines almost always offer flights at far less than the rates charged by large airlines, though they offer far fewer amenities in-flight. Still, if you want to save money that could better be used while enjoying yourself in ancient Rome, a small airline is the way to go. You can save even more money by booking flights to Rome that embark at night on a day early in the week. The early part of the week is usually the least busy time for airlines, and they price their rates lower because of the decreased demand. The bottom line is that, if you do your planning well ahead of the trip, then you can enjoy your European vacation every bit as much as the Griswolds enjoyed theirs. Hopefully, though, you won’t be nearly as destructive.