How to save on airline flights
Whether you’re traveling for pleasure or there’s an emergency that requires your attendance, most of us look for ways to save on airline flights. The question is how to find cheap flights to anywhere and saving on flights. According to studies, the average price for a round trip ticket in the United States is around $330. Those domestic tickets have increased in price by around 7% compared to where they were at in 2019, while international round-trip tickets are still hovering around the same $180 they were at three years ago. However, it doesn’t matter if you’re flying domestically or internationally, virtually everyone is looking for some cheap airfare.
With inflation rising and taking the price of most goods and services with it, it’s important to save a few dollars when and where you can. If you’re looking for ways to get discount airfare so you don’t spend so much of your travel budget on getting to and from your destination, consider some of these tips.
Planning in Reverse
Airfare prices change daily. With that in mind, you can change the way that you plan your trip. When you’re planning a trip, you probably choose your destination, the dates you plan on traveling, and then look for tickets that fit within your budget. Consider flipping the script and choosing your dates and location based on your ability to save on airline flights. Obviously, this is easier when you have flexibility while planning your trip. If you don’t have certain dates that you’re required to be at your destination, traveling during “off peak” times can certainly help you find cheap flights. This is the best advice in how to find cheap flights to anywhere.
Crossing the Ocean on a Budget to saving on flights
Even though those international flight prices haven’t gone up much in the last three years, there’s nothing wrong with trying to get discount airfare on your trip across the ocean. One of the smartest ways to do this is to avoid buying a single round-trip ticket. If you’re traveling to an international location that isn’t a traditional tourist destination, you can often save by purchasing a single ticket to a major travel hub and then traveling from that hub to your destination.
Using the Rules to saving on flights
It’s important to understand the rules and regulations that govern traveling so you can use them to your advantage. For instance, there is a US regulation that allows travelers to cancel or change a flight for no charge within 24 hours of booking, if they have booked the flight directly through the airline at least seven days before flying to or from the United States. The best way to take advantage of this type of rule is to monitor ticket prices for 24 hours after you initially book your ticket. If those prices drop, you can cancel your existing flight and then book a new one at no charge. Knowing how to use the existing rules to your advantage is a great way to save on airline flights.
Doublecheck Your Currency
While it’s not always the case, you can occasionally get cheap flights by booking your ticket in the currency of the country that you’re planning to travel to or from. Since most people book flights from their mobile device, there are fields in different apps that allow you to change your current location to the country that you will be flying into or out of. Before you finalize your plans, change the type of currency that you’re using to pay for your ticket and see if you can get a cheap flight by paying with something other than a USD.
Knowledge Is Power
There are some cases where you can get discount airfare simply by changing your travel plans by a few days. Apps such as Kayak and Google Flights allow you to see airline prices for up to 60 days at a time. That means that you can put a big dent in your airline ticket prices by shifting the dates by only a few days. Start by inputting your departure date and destination cities before clicking on the box that shows two months of ticket availability. The dates highlighted in green are the cheapest travel dates that are currently available.
Using Skiplagged to Check Hidden-City Prices
Hidden-city ticketing is a term used in the travel industry to describe what happens when you buy a ticket to a place beyond where you actually want to go and then end your trip in a layover city. This is a great technique to use when you’re traveling to a popular travel hub, or when you’re throwing your travel plans together at the last minute.
This is what will answer your question in how to find cheap flights to anywhere. Book flights with a stopover, and try to book each flight separately. Usually airlines will charge additional fees for ease of booking all flights together. Always check ‘hub’ airports for easy connecting flights. Some ‘hub’ airports in Europe which usually have good opportunities for cheap connections are: VIE (Vienna), AMS (Amsterdam Schipol), ZRH (Zurich), MUC(Munich), LHR (London Heathrow), FRA(Frankfurt).
For example, if you want to book a fly to Paris if you look via Poland, you could find cheap tickets than if you book directly to Paris, saving sometimes up to hundreds just adding few hours extra travel time.
Another way to find cheap flights is using flight alerts like jacksflightclub or Scott flight- companies like this search the web looking for cheap flights and send you notifications when they are available. Because they pick up on things like discounted or error fares, hidden offers and provides you with direct links to book the fares mentioned.
You can use credits cards point when getting your ticket to safe money. Also find discount in pages like Costco savings on flight and hotels.
Use the Pricing Features in Google Maps
You’re probably already aware that you can Google anything to find virtually anything. What you may not know is that you can use the pricing feature in Google Maps to find cheap flights. It’s important to note that doing this requires you to be flexible, but it can pay off big time. Google Maps allows you to choose varying travel windows, ranging from a single weekend to two-week trips. Take a look at this feature and see if you can get cheap flights by changing your destination city. For example, there are some cases where you can save significant money by flying to London instead of Paris. Being flexible is key if you’re going to use this, but the potential savings are well worth it.
Jump on Mistake Fares
No one is perfect, and that includes the airline companies who set online ticket prices. While they get it right more often than not, finding a mistake fare is one of the best opportunities that you will ever find to get cheap flights. When planning your trip, don’t waste time if you run across a ticket price that has been posted in error. Airlines are required to give you the price that you booked the ticket for, even if they were posted in error. This means that they will act quickly to change those mistakes once they’re listed, so you don’t have time to waste. If you see one of these mistakes, go ahead and book the ticket. If you need to cancel after the fact, you can use the 24-hour rule to do so at no charge.
Booking Early is a Great Idea
Most international flight pricing is at its lowest if you’re willing to book three to six months in advance. However, that doesn’t apply if you’re making inflexible plans for holidays or during the summer. In those cases, it’s a good idea to start making your travel arrangements even earlier. Obviously, that doesn’t mean that you’re required to book a flight as soon as you hit the six-month window, as ticket prices are always being adjusted. However, when flying, especially internationally, one of the best ways to get discount airfare is to get your tickets booked six or more months in advance.
Avoiding Those Peak Times
This is another tip for finding cheap airfare that requires you to be flexible. However, if you can find a way to avoid booking at peak times, you can save some big bucks on your airline tickets. Holidays, summertime, and other times of year are notoriously busy travel times, which means airline companies can charge more and know that they’re still going to sell out. If you’re wanting to see a certain city during the summer, consider waiting until one week after summer has officially ended. Most of the landscapes will still look the same, but you may be able to save on your flights by waiting only a week.
Pay Attention to Hidden Fees
Unbundling has become more and more common in the travel industry which leaves travelers paying extra for things that used to be including in the price of an airline ticket. This means that you need to be even more vigilant than before when looking at the details of your plane ticket. For instance, if you’re flying on an airline or in a class that charges extra for baggage, see if it’s a one-time fee, or if the airline is going to charge a baggage fee on each leg of the trip. In some cases, you may be better served to upgrade to a class that includes bags or look into switching to a direct flight. Price every aspect of your trip and choose the one that is going to be the cheapest.
Pack a Lunch
This may sound ridiculous, but you can save some major money by bringing some food along with you for your flight. Lots of budget airlines don’t include food on their flights, which means you’re going to be starving by the time you get where you’re going. Your only other option is to pay the over-inflated prices for food at the airport. Obviously, there are some items that you can’t bring on a plane, so it’s important to abide by the rules, but bringing your own food can not only help you save some money, it will probably also taste better than virtually anything you’re going to get in an airport or on a plane.
Bidding on Upgrades
Do you want to move out of coach into first class, but don’t really have room in the budget for such a move? You may have another option at your disposal. Some airlines will let travelers who are booked in a lower class to bid on seats in a better class. This becomes even more common when you get closer to your departure date. Bidding on upgrades is almost always cheaper than paying for them outright. Even if the airline doesn’t offer bidding options, check on upgrades at the counter before you get on your flight. If there are seats in first class and the flight is about to depart, many airlines will let you pay for an upgrade and the price will be much lower than it was even a day earlier.
Get Alerts About Your Flight
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Virtually ever OTA, including Google, Kayak, and Priceline will give you the option to receive notifications about ticket prices on your flight. If ticket prices on a flight that you’ve already booked drop, these platforms will send you a notification to your mobile device, which means you can cancel and rebook your flight. Remember, those cancellations are free of charge if you are still within the 24-hour window. Even if you’re not, there are some instances where the discount is significant enough that it’s worth eating a few dollars in fees.
Don’t Discount Budget Airlines
The travel industry has seen a boom in popularity, meaning there are more airline companies available than there were in the past. Some of these budget airlines such as JetBlue and Norwegian offer quality flight accommodations at a lower price than their full-service counterparts. However, you need to be sure that you’re not going to miss out on certain travel accommodations by going with a discount airline. Additionally, some of those budget airlines charge a lot of extra fees, so you should weigh out every aspect of the ticket.
Don’t Be Afraid to Sell Out
When flights are overbooked, it’s not uncommon for airline companies to offer incentives to travelers who are willing to take a different flight to where they’re going. While some airlines prefer travel vouchers, others will offer cash incentives, meaning you can actually make money on your ticket. If your plans aren’t dependent on being in a certain place on a certain day, don’t be afraid to wait a few hours or a couple days to sell your seat back to the airline. Being able to make money on your existing ticket is a great way to get discount airfare.
More and more airlines are charging checked-bag fees than before, which means that you can save by choosing to travel light. Obviously, this may not work if you’re going to be traveling for two weeks at a time, but if you’re planning a weekend trip, going with a carryon only is a great option. Make a list of what you have to have for your trip and commit to not packing anything else. This does not answer the question in how to find cheap flights to anywhere, however it will always help you saving money when you flight.
Join Loyalty Programs
Brand loyalty should be rewarded, and it certainly is within the travel industry. If you have a certain airline or two that you consistently choose, join any loyalty programs that they offer. Over time, you can build up points with these airlines. Those points can then be cashed in for free or discounted tickets. This is especially useful if you’re planning to travel during a peak time when ticket prices are at their highest.
Before you travel, you probably have a budget in mind. You certainly don’t want to spend money on baggage fees, airline tickets, and other in-flight features instead of spending it enjoying your destination. That’s why it’s so important to look for ways to get discount airfare whenever possible. If you’re looking for ways to save on airfare, start with these tips. Happy traveling!
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