Holiday travel season: What you should know about hidden fees

Search, pack, and take off.

The holiday season is right around the corner and everyone is looking for the cheapest deals they can find. Using frequent flyer miles might sound like a good idea to reduce plane ticket prices, but be cautious of late-booking fees if you book a flight leaving in a few days or weeks.

Getting a rental car? Make sure not to go through cashless toll booths without a car mounted pass. Some car rental companies can charge you a transponder fee, which can run $5 a day, and an administration fee, which can run $10-15.

So if you’re doing the math: A 50-cent toll can cost you $20.

Found a great hotel deal? Be aware that some third-party websites will give you an advertised price up front, but then later add hotel resort fees that cover amenities.

And remember, if you book through a third-party site and there’s an issue, you’re refunds will be harder to get. Also, if you’re researching online, give them a call, too. Sometimes they can offer better prices over the phone.

Thinking of skipping the hotel and going for alternative housing? Sites like Airbnb that offer homes for vacation stay may charge a lower nightly rate, but then they may charge a cleaning and daily parking fee.

So make sure you’re asking for all extra fees to be in writing before you sign up.

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