The Travel Insider: Planning ahead

Joe Maloney

The travel landscape is definitely different post-pandemic, which may not come as a surprise. Even if you’re a savvy traveler, you will need to evolve from how you’ve planned and booked trips in the past. This applies to every area in the travel industry—flights, hotels, rental cars, cruises, tours, dining—the list goes on and on.

As more countries begin welcoming American travelers again, travel companies are starting to offer more desirable itineraries. But as quickly as new cruises, tours, all-inclusive vacations, and rail journeys hit the market, they are selling out. You might be ready to explore the world again, but so is everyone else!

Here are a few tips from our AAA Travel Experts so you don’t miss out on those incredible travel moments you’re ready to experience again.


The number of U.S. travelers passing through airports started to surpass pre-pandemic numbers this past summer, according to the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). In fact, many members have told us they needed to arrive at the airport at least three hours before a flight due to long lines and wait times!

Rental Cars

Shortages from cars being sold off during the pandemic, and challenges replacing those fleets, have left car rental companies struggling to meet a post-pandemic surge in demand. Travelers are finding challenges not only renting cars, but also with the exorbitant prices. AAA Travel Experts have relationships with suppliers that are helping relieve the stress of booking, as well as finding the best deals and most reasonable prices.


The cruise industry has arguably made the most changes and technological advances in the travel industry. The pandemic pause-in-operations allowed for some exciting innovations that will impress even the most avid cruiser. However, demand is high. Within days of releasing new offerings to Europe or the Caribbean, our agents are watching certain trips booking up. Forming a relationship with a AAA Travel Expert will allow you to get a heads-up before your dream trip sells out.


More travelers are setting their eyes on guided vacations, and for good reason. These private, small- and large-group tours offer authentic and often customizable travel experiences with VIP access and local guides. Not only do our AAA Travel Experts know how to advise you on which trip will fit your needs, but they will let you know how soon to book so you get everything you’re looking for.

Our AAA Travel Advisors want to help you experience the exceptional! Tell them your ideal vacation, and you’ll be the first to know when trips become available and they’ll find you the best deals, member benefits, and invaluable information and advice.

Joe Maloney is vice president travel and retail operations for AAA Colorado.