Price is the undisputed king in the travel world. So you might be surprised to learn that since more than 95 percent of the online travel marketplace is (Expedia and Priceline), many of our travel sites found the exact same flights and cars for the exact same price.Our top picks all consistently found us the best prices for the cheapest flights and rentals – through Booking.com won the top crown for finding the cheapest price overall and Priceline’s unique tool helped us luck into getting a great deal.
Flexible date tools let you see what happens if you slightly adjust dates for a proposed trip. We love being able to compare prices if we left for vacation a day earlier, or came back a day later. If you’re bargain hunting and haven’t completely set a schedule, flexible dates are a must-have. The kayak was our favorite here, with flexible date results that ranged from one to three days, or even a whole month so you can see what week is best for your summer vacation.
Whether tracking down the right hotel amenities, locating a specific car type, or making sure our plane ticket covers baggage fees, it’s crucial to have great comparison features on a travel site. The best travel site will make it easy to request amenities, or at least give us a good look at the features of different options. Hipmunk stood out here with useful diagrams and cool displays about each hotel and flight in our search.
At its most basic, the best travel site should have pages that load quickly, display relevant results, and don’t leave us wondering if we’ve accidentally clicked on spam. This turned out to be a high bar. A few websites flooded us with pop-up ads imploring us to “call for better rates!” and StayDriveFly and ShareTrips had so many pop-ups their pages took an eternity to load.
5. Lowest airfare prices
After tracking prices for the same flight across two weeks, only one website truly impressed us It won the prize for finding our flight at its ultimate lowest cost and was always at the middle or lower end for ticket prices among our tested picks. Frequently, Booking.com charged between $9 and $18 less than the average ticket price for that day.
6.Thorough hotel comparison
We also loved the thoroughness of its hotel booking site – it has the most filters of any travel site we looked at, so you can get a clear picture of exactly what you’re paying for. You’ll be able to see whether each room has air conditioning, a private bathroom, a flat-screen TV, free Wi-Fi, and 20 more possible amenities.