how to save on vacations

5 reliable ways to save on your next vacation

If you want to spend less on — and worry less about — your next vacation, log onto, fly Southwest, and sleep at America’s Best Value Inn.

That’s the advice from polling giant Harris Interactive, which just yesterday released its annual EquiTrend survey. Among other things, it ranks the value and reliability of travel brands, from discount to luxury.

Of course, a website called is interested in the bargains. So here they are, with comments from Harris on the first-place winners…

Best Booking Agent

  1. Expedia — “Reaches a ten-year high in Brand Equity with strong marks across all three factors; Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration.”
  2. Travelocity
  3.  Orbitz

Best Value Airlines

  1. Southwest —  “Even as Southwest has evolved into a major national carrier, it maintains its original brand character and continuously creates a unique atmosphere for its flyers.”
  2. JetBlue

Best Luxury Airlines

  1. Alaska/Horizon — “Since 2008, this full-service carrier has seen steady increases in Brand Equity, driven mainly by Quality and Purchase Consideration gains.”
  2. Hawaiian 
  3. Delta

Best Value Hotels

  1. America’s Best Value Inn —  “High marks for Quality and Purchase Consideration among those Familiar drive the brand’s top ranking.”
  2. Super 8
  3. Red Roof Inn

Best Luxury Hotels

  1. Omni Hotels & Resorts — “Known for its personalized service, Omni posts significant improvements in Equity over the past three years.”
  2.  Starwood Hotels & Resorts
  3. Four Seasons

You can be fairly confident these will still be top choices next year. Aside from the luxury hotels category (which Omni last topped in 2011) all of these winners have won for consecutive years.

Posted in: Budgeting & Saving, News, Travel
Tagged with: ,