Our Chicago: Tips for summer 2022 travel about finding flights to Rome, Italy and when to visit Portugal


CHICAGO (WLS) — The last two years, many Americans have limited their travel. But it seems that’s changing as we approach summer 2022.

This holiday weekend, Triple A predicts nearly 1.9 million people in Illinois are traveling 50 miles or more from home.

Debbie Haas, vice president of travel for AAA, said it appears the summer travel season is off to a “sizzlin’ start.” She says the excitement to travel is the highest it’s been during the pandemic.

At the same time, gas prices are hovering around $5.00 or more.

“We’re seeing people have to economize on their trips,” Haas said. “Some are staying closer to home or shortening their trips and they’re looking for ways to save.”

For those who are flying, planning is key Haas said.

“And consider things that can make the flight less problematic for you. So one option is to try to take a direct flight. I like to consider taking the first flight of the day because that gives them the night before to catch up and get your plane where you want it to be,” Haas said.

Our Chicago: Part 2

Ja’Vonne Harley is the owner of Advantage International and host of a radio program “Traveling Culturati.” While she’s based in Chicago, she spoke to us from Rome where she was with a group. Harley said she’s hearing a lot of American accents the flight to Rome was completely full. The trip was in the works for a long time.

“Those who booked early were able to get really good airfares and our group airfare was set at a certain price,” Harley said. “Those who came on late just about within the last month of travel, the airfares doubled. So it’s very crucial to book in advance. Summer airfares are really going up.”

Both Haas and Harley recommended travel insurance pointing out that if you’re traveling internationally you have to produce a negative Covid test to return. And if you can’t, insurance can help cover any additional costs you might incur. And one international travel destination they both like this year: Portugal. They cited its affordability and Haas called it an “amazing place to visit.”

More information for international travelers:

AAA – Travel with Confidence

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