SOURCE: United States Tour Operators Association (USTOA)

March 07, 2007 11:01 ET

USTOA Tour Operators Offer Advice on How to Save

NEW YORK, NY -- (MARKET WIRE) -- March 7, 2007 -- Traveling can be costly, especially in Europe, where the strong Euro means that a four-star hotel can cost up to $450 or more per night and where other extras, like restaurant meals and sightseeing tours, can quickly add up. The United States Tour Operators Association recently asked its members for money-saving hints and strategies.

Among advice offered by both Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Europe was to look for cruise-tour prices fully bundled in dollars, at time of purchase. Not only does that protect against further devaluation, it also frees travelers from paying for costly extras on their trip.

When it comes to airfare, USTOA companies -- who move more than 11 million passengers yearly on vacation -- agree that waiting for last-minute bargains, contrary to popular belief, does not guarantee the best price. Booking early will often help lock in the best price and the best routing, as well as avoid late fees, advises USTOA member Cruise West.

Other money-saving hints from the insiders at USTOA include:

--  Choose train travel over renting a car.
--  Travel in the shoulder seasons to get value pricing.
--  Look for family discounts for children 18 and younger.
--  Know that escorted products have more included in the package price.
--  Look for vacation packages and tours that include as many meals as
    possible to put more money in your pocket for other things.
And last, but not least, consumers benefit from the buying power of tour operators... and enjoy hassle-free vacations with all or most of the arrangements taken care of well in advance.

More Information

To qualify for USTOA membership, a company must meet the travel industry's highest standards, including participation in the USTOA Travelers Assistance Program to help protect consumers' payments in the case of a member default. To locate a USTOA member company, visit or

Contact Information