Another trick: low-priced flights may occur because of the potential for expensive or very inconvenient arrival times, like public service trains or buses not running at that time, or needing to spend a layover in the early morning for four hours before the next flight.
Carefully consider whether a flight that requires an airport transfer is worth the savings and hassle after you subtract the transfer costs that are not covered by the airlines. Also, be aware that if you have to re-check your bags after a long layover or break in travel you may encounter different luggage limits on local flights even if you are traveling on the same airline.
• Look for extra fees. Pay close attention to rental car charges, especially when traveling to different countries. Required insurance, unexpected taxes and any kind of “extra” fees may appear, even if you have pre-paid.
• Be prepared. Know what you will do if the promised services do not materialize. A great example: if you bought traveler’s insurance, know the detailed procedure you will have to follow to make a successful claim if the airlines, your travel agency, or hotel operator do not make good on their promises. This procedure will be found in the smallest print in your insurance document.
• Know the distance. When planning your activities, make sure you understand how far everything is from each other and how you will get there. You don’t want to book something only to later learn that you can’t make it in time, a road is closed that season of the year, or you’ve scheduled many of your activities far from your home base.
• Read the fine print. Read, read, read before you book!