WAKE UP BUDGET WEEK: Traveling on a Budget During the Holidays - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

WAKE UP BUDGET WEEK: Traveling on a Budget During the Holidays

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WAKE UP NORTHWEST - Whether it's a cruise, a road trip or you're flying to your next destination, chances are you're on a budget.

So how do you plan that much-needed vacation without breaking the bank?

In the day of the internet, going to a travel agency might sound costly or unnecessary. But most travel agents get paid on commission by the hotels, airlines and resorts. 

Melissa Paul, Travel Agent for Northwest Family Vacations in Yakima tells us people come to her not only wanting to save money, they also want to save time. They're finding it hard enough to take the time off to enjoy a vacation, let alone do the research. 

"People have limited time off too but more and more people need to take their vacation days. I hear all the time, I lost my vacation or I just cashed it out. You need to take that time and to recharge your batteries and it's great to have those experiences with your kids too," said Paul.

She adds it's a good idea to plan early if you're traveling with a bigger group because you'll have more options. But with a smaller group of say 2 people, waiting can pay off because it's easier to score those last-minute deals. 

Paul also suggests (if weather and time allows) flying one way and then renting a car to drive back home.

As far as online resources, she says Google flights can help you score good deals.

"To use the internet as a tool is an excellent resource because you can see on a calendar what are the peak days to go. And if your travel plans allow you to travel actually on the holiday, on Thanksgiving, on Christmas or on New Years, there's less demand on those days," said Paul. 

Also, consider booking a house instead of several hotel rooms to save money. And if you haven't already, sign up for your airline's newsletter, download their app and get familiar with their rewards program.