What's better, booking travel in advance or last minute?

Benefits of planning in advance

There are many advantages to planning early, including the anticipation and the benefits of looking forward to things in the future.  There are emotional and mental benefits that vacations offer and when you can book early you increase the benefits and the time frame of receiving them.


Generally, you are able to pick the prime dates and preferred room types and even lock in tours that may sell out early.  Several companies and cruise lines offer incentives for early bookings.  

When it comes to cruising, a lot of people believe that waiting until the last minute or within 60-90 days prior they will get the lower fares.  It is possible that a promotion comes out that may save money but it’s also possible that if you booked in advance, the new promotion may apply to you anyway.  This is a win/win, if the price goes up you are locked in for the better promotion and if it goes down you save money or gain in some other way.  Of course, there are times that a last-minute offer or promotion comes out that can’t be applied to what you already have but by working with an agent you trust your chances of gaining something are significantly higher.


When you consider the benefit of early planning and its value, that typically exceeds any possible savings that may have been received.  After all, what value would months of anticipation and excitement plus knowing you have the best selection of everything hold?


Of course, sometimes we are available last minute and there is a great promotion that is offered and the spontaneous nature is an aspect of the entire experience.  This is different from wanting to do something and putting off the planning, waiting for something that may not even happen.

Waiting to book your vacation

There will always be those who wait for the cheapest price and spend months checking the offers until they are so tired of the searching they change their mind or end up booking something more than when they started.  The entire process of the vacation has become so annoying that even when they do book something, even if they did find a cheaper price, it doesn’t feel the same.   

It comes down to what you value and what’s important.  


Check back on the Art of Vacation main page to see more articles and updates.

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