You can never have too many suggestions when it comes to finding low-cost flights. Finding the ideal trip can be difficult with so many airlines having a variety of seat options, taxes, and stops to choose from. The majority of us are on the lookout for the perfect place in the middle, and pricing is frequently one of the most important considerations.
Here are twelve suggestions to assist you in booking cheap flights.
One of the easiest ways to save on airfare is simply by being flexible. The more restrictions that can be removed from your travel window, the better your chances are of finding a cheaper price. Some ways to accomplish this include:
- Flying on Monday and Wednesday instead of Friday and Sunday so your trip will happen during the middle of the week rather than at the end or beginning of it, which is typically when prices soar on flights.
- Booking earlier in advance instead of waiting until the last minute.
Know When Airlines Increase Prices
Slowly but surely we all get better with our budgeting and become more aware of how much we’re spending every month on little things.
We also pick up a few tricks for finding deals and saving money somewhere along the way. One trick is understanding when it’s cheapest to fly. Airlines typically raise their prices as the departure date nears because they know that most people will book those flights without giving it a second thought.
However, you can avoid this by planning ahead. Tickets purchased at least 21 days in advance are often substantially cheaper than those purchased closer to departure dates as airlines do not want to risk having empty seats if last-minute passengers don’t show up. Also, monitoring ticket prices over time using apps or sites like Hopper can help you understand trends so you know when it’s best to buy your tickets upfront and when it makes more sense to wait.
Read Also: How to Travel Like a Baller on a Budget
Be a Timewise Shopper
Sometimes the best way to save on your flight is by being more flexible with your timing, from both a date and time of day standpoint. For example, Tuesday evenings are typically less expensive than Sunday evenings because most business travelers won’t be flying home on a Tuesday evening after work. Also, mid-afternoon flights before 6 p.m. usually have cheaper prices than flights right before or during busy times at night since airlines know people prefer not to fly when it’s late or have an early morning start ahead of them.
Consider Nonstop Flights
Nonstop flights can often cost a lot more simply because they do not require stopping in another city along the way, but it is usually well worth the difference. If you have to stop somewhere anyway, it might be worth looking into flights that are stopping in a city or town you would actually enjoy visiting. This kind of trip allows an additional layover and provides more time to explore different cities without being limited to just one airport. It also helps reduce stress since there are fewer connections involved along the way.
Be Prepared for Fees
No matter how low your airfare gets, you will likely have at least a few fees tacked on at the end when you book your flight with an airline. The fees can vary depending on whether or not you’re checking any bags (and if so, how many), ordering meals and snacks during the flight, choosing a seat in advance, using your credit card to book the ticket, and so on. The best way to avoid all of these fees is by being prepared before booking your trip. Figure out what you’re most likely going to need ahead of time (some snacks or entertainment for the plane ride, for example), and then determine whether or not it’s worth it to spend the extra money when booking your flight. For some airlines, it might be cheaper overall if you order stuff during your flight since they charge for both checked bags and carry-ons, which can add up quickly.
Consider Alternative Airports
This might be difficult for some people who live geographically closer to one airport than another, but remember, this isn’t about how close you are to the airport, it’s all about how cheap you can get there!
Sometimes, it can make sense to fly into an airport that isn’t your closest one, especially if the airfare is cheaper. Check if flying into a further airport could reduce your ticket price. However, this might not always be an option for many, since many larger airlines do not offer services to some smaller airports in your area.
Package Your Airfare With Hotel or Car Rental
If you are planning to stay overnight after your flight, booking an air-hotel package deal can often save you money. In addition to booking your flight, you can also book a hotel stay as well as a rental car for about the same price as if you had only done one of those things on their own. This makes it easy since all of these services are brought together in the same package deal. By going this route, you will end up saving money overall on your trip, as well as time and stress by not having to coordinate with various companies yourself.
Buy From a Trusted Source
The last thing you want is for someone to take advantage of your excitement by selling you tickets that they don’t actually have access to or pretending they’re providing flights from one airline when they’re actually coming from another. There might be instances where your ticket is valid but unable to be used by you for various reasons. That’s why it makes sense to book your flight through a travel agency or reputable site that will take care of the hassle if anything should go wrong. Make sure to check out sites other than just airlines for deals on flights. I have found a couple of good deals from car rental companies and travel agencies.
Call the Airline Directly
Call the airline directly and ask them what deals are available over the phone at the moment, you may end up saving yourself some time by finding out before visiting their website. Also, sometimes they have deals only available on their website, so check both places! If you see something you like, always carry a copy of your reservation number with you if your plans change and need to be rebooked.
Fly Non Loyalty Airlines
If you don’t need a particular airline’s loyalty program and your desired flight is on one of their partners you can sometimes save yourself some points by flying with them, I tend to prefer this over saving 500 miles and “earning” 100% more than what I would’ve used anyways due to the pricing of the actual flights, just something else that needs to be taken into consideration!
Ask for Available Discounts
Always ask for available discounts. You may already qualify for things like student discounts, retired military, etc. Just make sure that you know what documentation is required beforehand to make your visit as smooth as possible! If you need proof, just show them your ID and they’ll issue it to you right then and there.
Fly Off Peak Season
If everything else fails, fly during a less busy time of year. Prices tend to be lower when flying mid-week or late in the month, this doesn’t mean that prices will always be cheaper, but it is something worth checking into should your travel dates work out well with these times.
Remember, never book last minute if possible, since this tends to be when airlines charge their highest fares. Always try to leave yourself some cushion between your desired departure and today’s date!