One holiday season brings thought to the next and for anyone thinking of booking Europe travel in 2023, there are interesting ways of keeping costs down. How and when you book is still the key factor in cost but it also pays to head to similar off-beat destinations and places where inflation is having less of an impact on travel costs.

Stay Away From Places Where Inflation Is Biting

A holiday is not just about hotels and airfare. The cost of anything from a coffee and taxi to a delicious dinner can really make a difference. While the world is coping with rising inflation, some countries’ prices are rising faster than others and it’s worth keeping this in mind before you book.

The Trivago Hotel Price Index calculated where prices have risen the most and where inflation has had the least impact—the cost of alcoholic drinks in Turkey, for instance, has shot up by a staggering 123%. Cities such as New York, Madrid and Las Vegas have risen a lot while cities such as Auckland, Johannesburg and Brussels have risen the least. What’s more, several cities in Asia (Kuala Lumpur, Dubai and Manila) have seen prices fall compared to 2021.

Look For Cheaper, But Similar Destinations

Prices will always be more expensive if places are on the beaten track but great deals can be had by heading to places that offer the same style holidays but at cheaper prices. Skyscanner is launching a tool in early 2023 that will offer similar destinations at cheaper prices when people search for trips.

Eastern Europe has been the unsung and undiscovered hero of travel for years—anyone wanting Croatia could head to Albania instead, whilst Romania offers the Carpathian mountains, the Black Sea, medieval villages, beautiful lakes and of course, Dracula himself (in Transylvania).

How And When You Book EU Travel Matters

The rise in flexible working means that holiday patterns and prices are not what they once were—peak times are extending to cover longer and different parts of the year to some destinations.

Early morning flights are always the better bet as they won’t be as prone to the delays and cancellations that impact flights running later in the day. Set alerts for flight prices and use the incognito mode when looking for fares, as the latter won’t raise the cost of airfares every time you search.

It’s usually (but not always) better to leave mid-week, if possible, and avoid travel that coincides with major events in cities. New York in September is a good example—it might be one of the prettiest times to visit the city but it also coincides with New York Fashion Week, the UN General Assembly and the U.S. Open.

And whilst flexible working and climate change (because of excessive heat) are extending shoulder seasons into traditionally off-peak travel times, the best deals to Europe are still to be had in January, as well as October and November.