MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Next month, many Minnesotans will be packing up and heading out of town for spring break vacations. This winter’s extreme cold and frequent snowfalls have made the idea of getting away even more appealing than usual.
But travel comes with a cost.

I talked with a travel agent to find out what you can do to save some money when booking that flight and hotel reservation. Hannah Lohmer-Johnsen is a travel agent for Travel Leaders.

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“It seems a lot of people are wanting to get out of here. But you can’t blame them, it’s been a historically colder winter,” Lohmer-Johnsen said.

She shared some ways to reduce the cost of a spring break getaway.

“I would say if people are still looking for last-minute deals, the best thing to do is go on off-weekend travel. If you can travel mid-week, or if you can shorten the vacation and not go the full seven days, you will be apt to find some better deals,” she said.

Also, buying a vacation package instead of booking your airline ticket and hotel separately will save money.

“A lot of the package vendors will have negotiated hotel and airfare rates, and so they are able to offer those at a lower price, instead of purchasing them separately,” Lohmer-Johnsen said.

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When it comes to Mexico, resorts in places like Puerto Vallarta or Mazatlan tend to be less expensive than destinations to the east, like Cancun and Cozumel.

Lohmer-Johnsen found a five-day trip at an all-inclusive resort in Mazatlan for four people for $3,300.

“And this is non-stop Delta flights, that’s always nice with this market, having them here,” she said.

Last-minute sales have apparently become rare.

“I would say during peak travel seasons like spring break things tend to disappear the quickest. They used to have a lot of fire sales, where within 24 hours you could find some great last minute deals, you just don’t see as much of those,” Lohmer-Johnsen said.

The most popular destinations for Minnesotans are cities in Mexico and the Caribbean. And for those without passports, Hawaii, Florida and California are popular.

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With airfare, the best thing you can do is buy the ticket at least 21 days in advance.