No fall break? No problem. Some BYU students are creating their own fall breaks with the help of local Instagram accounts promoting cheap flights.
Emily Kummer Holt is the owner of the Flights From Home Instagram account. She created the account on Sept. 1, 2016, and it already has more than 4,000 followers, including many BYU students.
Holt said she started the page as a way to share flight deals with friends and family.
“I watch flights, by that, I mean numerous times a day, and I can’t book all the flights,” Holt said in an email. “I figured, whatever, share the travel love with others, and that gets us to the start of the Instagram page.”
Holt said she loves living in Salt Lake City, but she also loves leaving the area. Traveling is a big and priceless part of her life, she said, but it can be costly. She picked up the hobby of watching flights and finding deals to travel more with her husband and daughter. She hopes this hobby will benefit others as well.
“Hopefully, everyone can find one they can use, and we can all have a priceless travel memory for less,” Holt said.
Most of the deals she posts depart from the Salt Lake City airport. Holt has posted several good deals, but she said her favorite ones were roundtrip fares to Amsterdam, Paris, Milan and Rome for $375. Another favorite was a fare to the Caribbean starting at $232.
Holt is not a travel agent, so she does not make money from the account. She said she does not have a set plan for @flightsfromhome because she is content with sharing deals.
“I really love when I hear that someone booked a trip they never thought financially possible because of a deal I posted,” Holt said.
Instagram pages like Holt’s are a good resource for students who want to go on a cheaper vacation. Makenzie Gorringe, a senior from Rupert, Idaho, studying anthropology, said Instagram is her main source for finding cheap flights.
Gorringe found an inexpensive flight to Chicago during Fall Semester 2015 and visited the city with two friends.
“It was at a point in the semester where we were tired of school and needed a break,” Gorringe said. “So we went to Chicago for about three days.”
This semester, Gorringe was scrolling through Instagram when she found a cheap flight to Boston. Her husband had to travel there for work, so she decided to tag along.
While Gorringe has given herself a fall break the past two years, she hasn’t noticed negative effects on her schoolwork. She said she planned ahead and made sure to submit everything accordingly.
“I’ll miss some participation points, but other than that, I go to class all the other times, so it wasn’t really a big deal to me,” Gorringe said.
Kaleihoku Kubota, a pre-management major from Maui, Hawaii, is another student who booked a last-minute flight this fall semester. She created her personal fall break to visit family in Hawaii.
“It was a nice break from school,” Kubota said. “My brain could shut off from school, and I could focus on things a bit more important like family and service. ”
Kubota believes students need a break from school. She said students usually focus on school six out of seven days a week.
“I didn’t realize until I went home and rested how exhausted I was from not even a full semester,” Kubota said. “Taking a break allows students to reboot and come back stronger.”