- hotelscombined.com – Search & compare over 900,000 global hotel deals from over 30 merchants on one site.
- Kayak – Hotel and flight search engine based out of the US. Sometimes different sites offer different prices for the same hotel.
- Skyscaner - Another Comparison search engine.
- Trivago.com.au – The world’s largest hotel search, with over 700 000 hotels around the world.
- AllTheRooms – Compares airbnb, VRBO, Groupon + hotels.
- Agoda – Hotel deals (especially Asia). Every booking and review earns credit for next booking.
- Asiatravel - Good hotel search engine for Asia, can also book tours and Airport Transfers.
- Hotel.com.au – Nice selection of hotels and offers $25 cashback on your first booking.
- Webjet Hotels – Large range of hotels
- Zuji Hotels – Nice amount of hotel deals for each Australia city
- YHA Australia Hostels – Cheap stays in Australia, plenty of locations to pick from.
- Airbnb – Rent apartments, rooms, or houses from people. Airbnb takes care of payment.
- Wimdu – Rent apartments, rooms, or houses from people. Wimdu takes care of payment.
- HomeAway – Holiday rental properties Australia wide.
- Not 1 night – ”The longer you stay, the cheaper the rate”
- vacation rental by owner – “US based but now many worldwide, have apartments for daily weekly rental in many locations, eg got a nice 3 bedroom unit in Breckenridge for $US100 a night shared with 2 other couples = $US34 a night”
- Currency – Get the exchange rate of over 180 currencies with the app; can be used without wi-fi
- Grab Taxi - Best way to get a Taxi in South East Asia
- TripAdvisor – Extremely handy for reviews on accommodation, restaurants and service providers
- Uber – Uber is a great way to cut down on taxi fares while you’re abroad and also get to any tricky to get to destinations
- Webjet App – Search and book travel deals on the go
- Transport in Sydney: General information and advice on transport in Sydney from Destination NSW
- Brisbane City Loop: The free service operates every 15 minutes between 7 am and 6 pm (Monday to Friday) in both directions on a loop. The Loop runs from QUT and stops near City Hall, Central Station and Eagle Street Pier.
- Spring Hill Loop: The free service operates every 10 to 15 minutes between 8 am and 6 pm (Monday to Friday) in both directions on a loop. The Loop runs from Spring Hill to Queen Street.
- Autoslash says it can constantly check rates and rebook if price goes down, for Car rentals in the US. Testing it now.
- Car Rentals - US based.
- Compare Car Rental – Compare car hire prices from all over the world. Australian Owned.
- TravelJigsaw - Prices in AUD with all insurance included.
- VROOM - Car Rental comparison and booking tool
- Car Rental Insurance - Tips and saving on car rental insurance.
- Compare Campervan Rental – Compare all Australian & New Zealand campervan providers.
- Adioso – Adioso is an airline flight search engine for flexible travelers. Adioso offers a simple natural text search tool to help you find the cheapest flights and the best destinations.
- Flightfox – Flight comparison (crowd-sourcing)
- https://www.google.com/flights/ Google Flight search
- Hipmunk – Great for easily comparing international flights
- Hot Flights list – ”the cheapest flights found in the last 6 hours” (from the website I Want That Flight!).
- Kayak – Comparison on flights
- Skyscanner – Compares flights including budget airlines from around the world.
- Cheap Flights from Webjet – shows cheap airfares for every day, up to six months away.
- Cheap Flights from Zuji – Zuji flight search
- Airlines sometimes offer to beat a lower price fare (e.g. Jetstar's Price Beat Guarantee).
- Booking flights by using the airline's own website is usually cheaper than a travel agent or other third-party website. (e.g. after using Webjet, find the same flight on the airline's website).
- Some airlines will allow you to avoid the credit card fee if you pay by bank deposit. (e.g. Virgin Australia has a 'POLi' - Internet Banking option)
- Some airlines will allow you to avoid the credit card fee if you pay by mastercard debit (eg qantas). If you are an existing Westpac customer you can get one of these for free.
- Some third-party websites (e.g. Zuji Australia) will allow you to book airfares at the same price as Airlines and pay by credit card without being charged the credit card surcharge or booking fees, which ends up cheaper than booking from the Airline directly.
- Organise your travel via trip it
- Try looking at international comparison sites as well as your local site (e.g. Webjet New Zealand)
- Virgin Australia (international) – $30 per person/per booking.
- Virgin Australia (domestic) – $4.50 per person/per flight. Same as their PayPal fee.
- Qantas (international) – $30 per person/per booking.
- Qantas (domestic) – $7.70 per person/per booking.
- Qantas (master card debit and Bpay) – $0.00 per person/per booking.
- Jetstar (international) – $12.50 per person/per flight.
- Jetstar (domestic) – $8.50 per person/per flight.
- Jetstar (JQ mastercard, Poli, direct deposit) – $0.00 per person/per flight.
- Tiger (domestic) – $7.50 per person/per flight.
- Tiger (Mastercard debt) – $0.00 per person/per flight.
Lifehacker’s 2011 Australian Airport Public Transport Guide - A guide that compiles all the cheaper methods of getting to airports in your major city. OzBargain Discussion
- Many “gold” or “platinum” credit cards offer free travel insurance. Check the fine print carefully including eligibility, they may require the entire return flight to be booked on the credit card or some part thereof.
- Example: Citibank Visa Platinum is underwritten by Zurich and requires full payment of your airfare to get complimentary international travel insurance, no matter how long the travel. Zurich also underwrites CBA and ANZ but if the travel period is <31 days, you only need to pay at least $950 or at least $250, respectively, with your credit card from those institutions. Given travel agents usually pass along the credit card fee of 1-3%, it can be cheaper to make a partial payment with credit card and get insurance included through the transaction rather than needing to buy it as well. [NB: Call your credit card insurance underwriter to confirm - this information is valid as of 30 Apr 2010].
Downunder insurance – BUT go via Starthere and get 11% back
Columbus Direct – Great deals on pre-existing medical.
All the above sites offer competitive prices. It really pays to look at the policy for each company. For instance Zuji offers $5 Million personal liability while TID only offers $2.5 Million, their are differences between them all for hire car excess, travel delays, etc.
A further tip to consider. If 2 of you are going some times having separate policies can save money as a policy for 2 costs the same as 2 individual policies. Eg You want car rental insurance cover, buy for 1 the policy that has this included (the name you will use on the car rental contract)and buy a second policy for your partner that doesn't have this which is usually cheaper
NZ currency exchange.
Best place to get good rates on AUD to NZD is using KiwiBank found in post offices in NZ. Rates are much better than in the bigger banks and with the currency exchanges.
Rates received in May 2009 were 6c per Aussie dollar higher than with Banks (1.18 vs 1.24) Also no fees were attached to the conversion. Experience was based on dealings made in Auckland.
Some details can be found here. http://www.kiwibank.co.nz/personal-banking/international-services/foreign-exchange/fast-branches.asp
THAILAND currency exchange.
If you visit Bangkok, a shop, superrichthailand, near Central world shopping centre offers the best rate. You can check it online here: http://www.superrichthailand.com/editor/rate.html
Just be careful, there is another shop on the same street which has similar name, superrich: http://www.superrich.co.th/rate.php (actually has same AUD buy rate as at 18/03/2013)
Singapore currency exchange.
In Little India, the Mustafa shopping centre offers almost market rates with no commission.
Vietnam currency exchange.
Jewellery stores are good places to change money. Look for places where there is a cluster of jewellery stores together, such as Hang Bo street in Hanoi. Check what the current midmarket rate is first then shop around at a few stores to find the best rate.
Century 21, for example, is a fantastic place to get 50% off designer labels (and the original price is generally less than the price here in Australia anyway!) but it’s NY-only, not across the country. See http://www.c21stores.com/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Century_21_(department_store) - they do not participate in the Black Friday sales because everything is already deep discounted.
Macy’s shoe department (http://www.macys.com)- OMG. Seriously. Two floors of shoes in a massive store and in the Black Friday sales, it is packed packed packed with women jostling each other to find the bargains. I let my wife go playing in there for 45 minutes to do some initial scouting and then went into the fray myself to assist. Don’t expect it to be a quick process. You need to find the shoe you like in the size you want and then ask an attendant to get you the matching shoe from the same pair out of the storeroom(unlike here where you find any size and then the attendant brings you both L+R shoes in a different size). We picked up a couple of pairs, one reduced from $120USD to $30USD.
Macy’s also has an international visitor discount card so if you’re not from the USA, you can use the card and get a further 10% off throughout the store. All you need to do is collect the card from the information desk on the 3rd (or 4th???) floor - even with the sales swelling customer numbers, this only took 1-2 minutes to queue and obtain (just show your Aussie drivers licence) and saved more $$$ on each transaction. See http://www.macys.com/store/about/visitor/index.jsp for details.
Old Navy (http://www.oldnavy.com/) are basically just a department store but I found these were the kings of the Black Friday sales in terms of discounts [eg: thick wool-lined jackets for $25-$45 each, down from $60-$130]. JC Penney (http://www.jcpenney.com) were where I found the better jeans to fit me (because they had a wider range of styles) and the two stores were very similar for denim prices. Base prices for denim jeans are, of course, lower in the US anyway but typically the lower AUD means they’re about the same net price. With the dollar much higher than usual, even base prices are serious discounts.
Ross Dress For Less (http://www.rossstores.com/) are an outlet store for a lot of designer labels. They mainly have clothes, shoes & accesssories (you pay similar prices for clothes as you would in Big W/Target here, sometimes even less), but at good prices are luggage (you can get a samsonite suitcase for around 80 bucks). They also have kitchenware homewares, toys, food and other miscellaneous departments as you would find in a department store. As long as you're not hung up on getting a particular line or item, they have a great range of clothes for all ages and sizes. Each store stocks different stuff, so shop around if you have time.
More discussions here