The early bird catches the worm. I’ve heard that phrase a million times, and yet my inner early bird somehow turns worm-like when booking a holiday. I find it hard enough trying to plan my week in advance, let alone planning a budget-friendly, perfectly timed break sometime later in the year.
I always end up feeling FOMO every time a friend boasts about some amazing deal they scored through an “early bird sale” that I didn’t even know was on. Inside, I cry. Outside, I say “wow, that’s amazing” in my best “not jealous at all” voice. Not jealous at all.
I’m not completely disorganised. I subscribe to various travel email alerts and constantly see Facebook ads selling those picture-perfect escapes to Bali, Thailand or Vietnam (Facebook knows me all too well). But that early bird bargain always seems to fly away (play me a small violin, please).
That all changed recently. It happened just after I returned from a holiday in Bali with family. We stayed with a relative who moved there a year ago, and we got to live like locals. Sunsets on the beach, coconuts delivered by the coconut man in the morning, yoga in the backyard – it’s hard to come back to the real world after days like these.
But they say that the best way to beat those post-holiday blues is to book another one. Calculate work leave, figure out the budget, time it with the next school holidays or on a weekend – you do what you've got to do.
After recently flying on Jetstar's smooth, spacious and seriously sexy Dreamliner, I wanted to suss out where I could go next without bruising my bank account too much.
I went to their website and saw "Club Jetstar". It's a newly relaunched subscription membership program for – wait for it – EARLY BIRD bargain hunters. Unleash my early bird. I beg you.
Club Jetstar launched only recently, which is why I hadn't heard about it. You pay $49 a year and get access to early bird sales and member-only sales throughout the year. The club offers early access to Jetstar's biggest flight sales of the year (from end of financial year to Christmas and more). That means you're first in the gates (excuse me while I go and humble-brag about it to my friends...who better not go taking my deals).
On some return flights you save $20, others you save $40, which is a blessing when it comes to booking for a family or a small group. Yes, that's the best part – the club isn't just for you. You can book for yourself and up to four additional people, which means that $49 annual fee is well worth it in the long run.