How to find cheap airfares
For most people the reason they don’t go away as often as they’d like is due to the expense of travelling; there’s flights, hotels, spending money, insurance, travel etc. Usually flights can be the largest expense of a trip, but they don’t have to be, you can grab flights to Europe for little more than pizza hut delivery and further afield doesn’t always have to cost the earth. Here are some of my tips on how to find cheap airfares :
Make your searches using incognito windows
Anything you search for on your computer will get stored within the cookies of your computer, and search engines and websites will remember what you’ve previously searched for. If you’ve previously looked for flights to particular places and then go back to check the same ones later chances are the prices will have increased. This is done because the flight companies know you want to go there and by increasing the price it might scare you into booking them there and then in case they go up again. By using an incognito window the cookies won’t be stored and you won’t be subjected to constant differing prices as much. It’s also worth checking on different devices/ IP address’ before you click the book button.
Use comparison search engines
You can compare prices of all flights by using a comparison search engine such as Skyscanner or Kayak (my personal choice), by choosing your destination/ dates you can see which airline is going to be the cheapest. You might think that companies such as Easyjet and Ryanair might be the cheapest but depending on the location and dates this might not always be the case. You can also search and leave the destination empty if you’re unsure where you want to go and choose your holiday based upon which location is the cheapest.
Work out the cheapest date to fly
Unless you’re locked into specific dates if you’re able to be a little flexible you could save yourself lots of cash so when you select your destination on Skyscanner you can leave the dates to ‘whole month’ or even empty and choose your dates depending on when’s cheapest. For example if you want a five day trip it might be cheaper to go Wed- Sun as opposed to Fri- Tues.
Consider alternative airports
It might not always be cheaper to fly directly to where you want to go, especially if there’s an event on around this time. In some countries such as Germany you might find there are loads of airports within a few hours of each other and it might be cheaper to fly to an alternative airport and pay a small amount for a train/ coach to where you actually need to be. This is probably not a viable option for a short-break but can be for a longer one.
Book longer stopovers
When planning a long haul trip, try a stopover it might be cheaper to have a half a day or even few days in a location before travelling on to your final destination as flights which are designed to be flown together might work out a lot more expensive. Not only might you save money but you could add an extra part onto your holiday. For example you can stopover in New York or LA when flying on to Hawaii, or stop in Singapore when flying over to Australia, not only does it break up being cooped up on a plane for hours on end but you get to see somewhere new for a few days.
Avoid UK Airports
The UK has the most expensive taxes when it comes to flights, we particularly see this on long-haul flights – it can be cheaper to fly from Dublin to NYC rather than from the UK, I’ve noticed Dublin, Paris, Amsterdam and Oslo to be places where you can find some great deals.
Check if it’s cheaper to book in another currency
If you’re using an airline which isn’t local to you it might be cheaper to pay in another currency such as that of the destination you’re visiting – for example with Thai Airlines it’s cheaper to book using the Thai website than it is to use the UK variation of the website. This can save you money if the exchange rates are good but make sure you use a credit card that if free of foreign transaction fees if you are going to do this – or calculate charges into the fare as they may outweigh the savings.
Above were just a few tips on how to find cheap airfares, do you have any top tips that you can share? If so, please feel free to contact me and I’ll add them to the above.
Kayak – My Favourite Comparison Website