There are many things I love about living in New York, but surviving the winter and early spring is certainly none of them. During this time, I tend to inevitably find out what I call my annual day of reckoning in questioning my fundamental decision-making abilities and berating myself because has actually opted for roots in this cold AF city. Why are you doing this for you every year? I wonder, groaning and annoyed as I stomped through a pile of annoyingly familiar slush. And why have not you moved to California, like all the other rational people you know?
I'll go over and over again and imagine these palm trees and the warm Pacific air until I remember Oh, wait, I do not want to move to California. While the sunshine in theory is good around the clock, especially when I'm wrapped up in my winter uniform's burrito blanket, I really like like New York during the rest of the year – I only need one dose of sunshine to bring me through the bad weather in cold weather and to continue from December to April.
And that's why I'm 100 percent dependent on my annual winter vacation in warm weather. As a Travel Writer I have the privilege of traveling a good deal all year round, exploring new places and cultures and bringing fresh ideas home – but this particular journey is different. I do not care where I go or what I see and do, as long as it's sunny, warm and cheap. I do not have to stay in a super nice hotel, and I do not mind if my days are not filled with cultural activities either.
The idea is easy to treat my brain a little bit of sunshine because it turns out that my brain does not care if it rests on a five-star chair or a towel that I have of mine Airbnb hosts borrowed. And chances are you do not have to – you just have to go to the chair or towel. With that in mind, I've asked some sunshine seekers for their smartest tips on how to book a cheap getaway in a warm and sunny spot. In conjunction with my own advice, we have your back.
Consider this guide for planning a maintenance-friendly get-away that is good for both mind and body, and does not drain your bank account.
. 1 Try to consider this trip as a must, not a maybe.
I wrote before wrote that traveling is for me the ultimate act of self-care. While this is always the case throughout the year, I think this is especially true for me in the cold winter months, when my sun exposure is particularly low.
In order for me to actually do the Vitamin D journey, I have to say I find it incredibly helpful to make it non-negotiable. I'm not thinking of something that I could do, but I'm thinking of something I need to do to maintain my mental health by writing and running in my diary (yes, even in the cold .
To follow my trail, try blocking a couple of days in your calendar in advance so they're right next to your medical appointments. Just as important, budget the same way you do something different every year even if it means that you have to turn down other things that are not that important, and even if you can only get away from home for a couple of days, it's still worth it – it's important that you try them
2. Let the airfare determine your destination.
Since the goal of the journey is to get a slightly cheaper sun, it does not matter where you get it, so why not go where The cheapest Can receive flight?
Google Flights is a convenient resource to quickly aggregate flight cost and availability information from third party websites in a user-friendly calendar format. It is not perfect (for example, it does not retrieve information from every single travel website or airline), but it is useful to set your location and / or your dates flexibly. You can also track the prices of certain flights you are interested in and send e-mails when the price changes.
"You can either enter a specific destination and view its calendar, so you can see which days are cheaper than others to fly, or you can and will get into a common destination such as Europe or California on a particular date You can see the fares to different airports in this general destination. "Tausha Cowan, 33, Google follower who directs the blog The Globe Getter tells me.
Travel writer Stephanie Walden 30, is also a big fan of the free-ride toll aggregate Momondo for improvised trips. "They have a new feature that allows them to search [for] for the cheapest destinations from any home airport, which is ideal for people who want somewhere but do not have a fixed itinerary." tells me. "For me, a mix of Google Flights to find the cheapest dates and Momondo to search for deals and" optimal "flights is a winner."
. 3 Or follow the deal websites for last minute discounts.
There are many of them, but my particular favorites are The Points Guy The Flight Deal Airfare Watchdog Secret Flying and TravelPirates . Their employees literally spend their days searching the internet for last-minute airfares and then sharing them with their followers. You only need to track them on Twitter and / or sign up for the newsletter or text messaging. Secret Flying even has an app that provides instant notifications for deals from your home base.
Of course, the difference between these offers and the ease of using Google Flights to find steals is that these deals are typically super specific, such as flying on random days of the week and at random times. But if your only goal is to get some sunshine at some point in March or April, and you are not really taking care of other things and being flexible, then these offers might be perfect for you.  4. Join some closed Facebook travel groups.
You'll be surprised how much good advice you can get.
"Exploring destinations and planning trips is one of my job as a travel journalist, so with my family and me. Www.mjfriendship.de/de/index.php?op…39&Itemid=32 I can Sneaking to the beach for a real family vacation and spending as little time as possible finding a winter deal, "says Lauren Matison 34, saying that she never thought that Facebook would do so their "tour guide on the go".
Matison finds the best advice in closed groups – like Tiny Globetrotters and Women Who Travel – where members are more than willing to share their best information, whether you're looking for an exceptional all-inclusive or you need them Helping to secure a last-minute rate on a low-cost booking page, "she explains.
5th crew member.
When you fly With 10 or more people, you can get through qualifying certain rates for a group rate and a hotel price For example, if you book through the new Events Platform meetings.com you'll be able to get group rates and discount group deals right away, says co-founder Tim Hentschel, who also runs the Managing Director and co-entrepreneur is Founder of HotelPlanner .
"Customers can visit the site via WhatsApp and Faceboo Send k to your friends or your network to see who is interested and to secure additional group travel deals once they have a confirmed number of travelers. "Hentschel explains. A word of caution: Make sure that a person books for the entire group unlike any person who has booked individually. That's because the instant group discounts – which are on average 20 percent lower than the lowest published online rates – only come into effect when you book at least three hotel rooms per night. You book for a large group.
. 6 Always try to negotiate your room rates.
It may not work every time, but you can try to negotiate the price of a hotel room or airbnb. "I always call at the hotel I stay in to see if I can lower the price – it's amazing how much discount you get when talking to a real person!" Advises Elyse Eisen, 33, journalist and founder of The Blog of Tipsy Traveler . "Remember, they want your business," she continues. If you do some research and find that other localities in the area are cheaper, but are of particular concern to a hotel, tell the reservation agent that you have found another hotel for a cheaper price nearby and you will be surprised how fast the price can go down, "suggests Iron.
Another option is to review third-party websites that sell travel, then call the hotel directly and tell them the price you've found and ask them to, advises Stef Michaels, travel expert and travel site manager Adventure Girl . "Since hotels want their business, they'll often get perks that you would not get through a third-party booking site," she adds.
If you stay in an Airbnb, do not forget to at least try to negotiate this rate. For example, when Walden discovers a property that she likes at Airbnb, she often notifies the host if she's ready to deal with her. "Many people are unaware that many Airbnb hosts are open to negotiation, especially for new deals without many reviews, school hours or longer stays," she says. She also tries to be a faultless guest, so her ratings are strong, which definitely helps her case.
. 7 Try to achieve a place with a kitchen.
One of my favorite areas of travel is trying out local food – which means it's unrealistic for me to cook all my meals in my Airbnb. The vow to cook a meal is actually very feasible.
The easiest for me is definitely the breakfast. And Walden agrees: "There's no need to pay $ 10 a day for eggs in a restaurant if I can make them at home. So at least I try it, which allows me to save for lunch and dinner outside the city, "she says.
If you do not feel like cooking or staying in a hotel, Samantha Cassetty a NYC-based nutritionist, suggests you bring some oatmeal packets so you just need to heat up some water. "It's also fun to buy a grocery store like a local and go to the local market on the first day to buy fruits, vegetables, nuts and fresh bread that you can combine with your breakfast," she says. Annie Daly