Internet bargains go fast. The moment a good travel deal appears online, someone out there is snapping it up. But since nobody wants to spend their life checking the web for updates, how do you make sure you get first dibs on the best discounts? Easy: make them come to you, using an ingenious new technology called Really Simple Syndication (RSS).

RSS will let you know the moment any of your favourite sites announces a new deal. It feeds the information direct to your computer, using either a personalised web page or a piece of downloadable software that sits on your desktop, rather like those boxes that update the cricket score while you’re working.

Let’s say you’re one of the millions who use low-cost airlines. To get the best deals, you need to know when EasyJet, Ryanair or Flybe introduce new routes or special fares. In the past, that meant signing up to each of their e-mail newsletters.

Not any more. Instead, you can go to Cheapflights.co.uk and subscribe to its RSS feed, which has news of the latest deals offered by every low-cost airline in the UK. Sign up at news.cheapflights.co.uk/flights/rss.html and the information will automatically appear on your reader.

Online travel agents and tour operators are also embracing RSS. Lastminute.com has introduced feeds detailing each day’s best hotel discounts, package holidays and theatre deals.

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