Do you become ecstatic at the thought of flying? Honestly, me too. Reaching the sky and wandering through the clouds has always been one of the top dreams of humanity. Visiting hidden gems and exploring cobbled streets and isolated beaches is on everyone’s bucket list.
During most trips, airfare will occupy a sizable section of your travel budget. ProMoneySavings will help you master the art of spotting inexpensive flights with the exact steps to follow. After all, we don’t want you endlessly putting off that trip you always craved for.
Keep on reading, and have a safe journey!
Table of Contents
- 1 Look At All Your Options
- 2 Search Flights In Incognito Mode
- 3 Be Flexible With Travel Dates And Times
- 4 Choose The Cheapest Destination
- 5 Book Flights With Layover
- 6 Book One-Way Tickets And Fly In And Out Of Different Cities
- 7 Fly With Budget Airlines
- 8 Mix And Match Airlines
- 9 Book Early Flights
- 10 Or Last-Minute Flights
- 11 Search For Special Deals
- 12 Use Your Points And Miles
- 13 Use A Travel Rewards Credit Card For Cashback
- 14 Search For Individual Tickets When Flying As A Group
- 15 Consider Hidden City Ticketing
- 16 Book Flights On Websites Of Other Countries
- 17 Look For Airline Error And Sale Errors
- 18 Consider Buying Tickets In Bulk
- 19 Conclusion
- 20 FAQ
Look At All Your Options
Not all flight search websites are equal, and some tend to neglect budget or foreign carriers. They omit minor airlines since they either object to paying a booking commission or they aren’t displaying results in English. Other search engines present the same prices offered directly at the airline websites.
It’s ok to have a few favorite flight websites such as Momondo or Skyscanner. Yet, always make sure you check the websites of regional budget airlines as they may not be part of major search engines. Having concluded that no ideal airline search engines exist, it’s up to you to look for all options and compare them.
In order not to miss any results set price alerts to keep track of fares. Plus, always keep your eyes open for any special deal coupons. We already explained how coupons are a great strategy for saving cash on basically anything.
Search Flights In Incognito Mode
You started searching for a particular flight, the prices were excellent, but you wanted to wait a bit longer. Suddenly, prices start going up, and you see yourself panicking. A very familiar scenario, indeed. The previous prices haven’t disappeared, and you’re not going mad.
How is this possible? Well, airlines use advanced ‘cookies’ that track your activity and send back information to the supplier. Therefore, the seller becomes aware of the most popular and frequent searches and starts boosting the fares. Panic won’t do you any good because you’ll only pay a more expensive flight hoping that you’re grabbing the ‘last best deal.’
Remember to search for flights in secret mode with hidden windows. Never neglect this searching hint as it is the number one tool to locate exceptional flights. Incognito windows work like any other internet page. The only difference is that you reset the cookies each time you open incognito windows.
Be Flexible With Travel Dates And Times
Flexibility has always been one of the most efficient money-saving travel tips. The truth be told, plane tickets range greatly depending on the season or even the day you’re flying. Holiday seasons and August vacations are the peak times when most people press airlines for fares.
In a nutshell, you’ll pay a lot more if you’re flying when everyone else is traveling too. If your work schedule allows it, be flexible with the dates. Visit your dream destinations when fewer people go there to enjoy the freedom of sightseeing for less.
Remember that the more rigid your plans in terms of day and time, the less luck you’ll have in snatching great deals. Flying off-season or in the middle of the week will undoubtedly land you a discount. Consider flying the next day after a major holiday.
Airlines are anything but dumb. They scavenge the world for major national holidays, festivals, and sports matches. Consequently, they raise the prices to match the days of major world-wide events and school breaks.
Choose The Cheapest Destination
The best travel combination is to be flexible, both with flying times and destinations. Yet, even with a rigid schedule, you can find extremely cheap flights to visit if you’re open to new destinations. Nowadays, search engines like Skyscanner and Google Flights show you a world map with all flights only by inserting your home airport.
There is no need to brainstorm every possible option manually, day by day, city by city. Flight search websites compare multiple destinations and give you a final map of flying options. Take a look at the map, and you’ll surely find unusually good deals. They might not be your first choice, but if you are flexible, a whole world with possibilities can open up ahead.
Kiwi.com is another tool that will overwhelm you with hundreds of wanderlust destinations. Insert your departure city and a date range, and get ready to reach the sky. Destinations come sorted by price for travelers to pick the most cost-effective places to visit. In a word, scouring for fares and not cities might be rewarding in terms of better deals.
Book Flights With Layover
Do you prefer nonstop flights rather than those with layovers? Well, it’s time you reconsider this stigma as nonstop flights tend to be more expensive. When looking for cheaper, particularly longer, flights, layovers are an inevitable part of lower offers.
Even better, why don’t you select an extended layout that can turn into a stopover? This way, you can leave the airport and tour an additional city or two. Amazingly, but your pre-planned journey can turn into a multiple city adventure if you select layovers on round flights wisely.
Specialized search engines like AirWander will take care for you to enjoy multi-day layovers to the full extent. Rather than wasting time at the airport, you can explore that city that you always wanted to see. To act accordingly, insert your place of departure, the final destination, and the number of days planned for a layover. You’ll get an extensive list of places to stop over at exclusively low prices.
Book One-Way Tickets And Fly In And Out Of Different Cities
Booking a round ticket to and from the same destination is the most straightforward and logical way to go. However, it might not always be the cheapest. Have you tried flying to one city and then coming back from another? Apart from the chance to see both cities, you can save some serious cash with this travel strategy.
For example, imagine you’re flying to Stuttgart from New York. One option is to fly back from Frankfurt, though there are many nearby airports you can consider too. Hence, always check the prices of airports within the same area. Even more, you can cross borders and visit another country if that fits in your travel schedule.
Think about intercity travel that can cost you just a fraction of the primary air ticket. The underground, buses, and taxi transport in developed countries are particularly convenient. With a little more time dedicated to planning, you can avoid spending extra money on the most obvious route.
Fly With Budget Airlines
The compulsory flying with traditional expensive carriers is no longer a reality. Today, an abundant array of budget air companies service any long-haul route you might conceive. Exploring the world with less money than a decade ago has become accessible to any avid traveler.
Imagine flying from Asia to Australia for only $100 per way or visiting Bangkok from Europe for $500 in total. With the appearance of low-cost airlines like AirAsia, Norwegian Airlines, Southwest, Flair, and Frontier, you can travel both cheap and safe.
As of the drawbacks, surely you can neglect the fact that you must provide your meals or pay onboard. Reserving a particular seat comes at an extra fee, and checking bags isn’t for free either. Further sacrifices you must make for the sake of your budget are legroom, space, and movies. Anyway, if you can endure several hours without all these luxuries, you’ll undoubtedly avoid breaking the bank.
Lastly, we advise you to keep a watchful eye on the fine print and extra fees. For instance, Ryanair charges $55 if you forget to check-in online and print your boarding pass, or use their mobile application. Also, always check the restrictions on luggage allowance because if you exceed it, expect a hefty fee levied.
Mix And Match Airlines
Opting to book with a particular airline gives you flying options with that carrier only and the partners it might have. In short, your travel options are limited if you pursue more significant savings and perfect itineraries. Therefore, try booking tickets with separate air companies.
For instance, if you’re flying from Berlin to Los Angeles, consider a stop in London. Of course, one ticket is a more straightforward option but more expensive, as well. It would be cost-effective to book the leg from London to Los Angeles as one ticket. Then, reserve the leg from Berlin to London as another journey with a different airline. You’ll spend more time shopping around, but savings are higher, and you can enjoy more flexibility.
Booking separate segments of a single flight can often prove successful with websites like Kiwi.com. The site matches trips making use of different flights the operator comes across to offer clients the best possible prices. This strategy is quite useful with long-haul flights because it also entails low-cost air carriers.
Book Early Flights
When it comes to air tickets, the golden rule ‘the sooner, the better’ is valid. If you’re sure about your journey, booking even months before you set off is a smart idea to save hundreds of dollars. However, don’t book too early when the flights become available as this is a trick by air companies to test the interest of travelers.
Conversely, flight experts believe there is an exact spot when airlines start lowering or increasing fares. About 50 days before departure or 6 to 8 weeks, airlines analyze the demand for flights and begin altering prices. In case you’re flying in the peak season, consider fortifying your tickets maybe three months ahead.
Always apply this hint when looking for air tickets unless your journey occurs out of a sudden. Check regularly, and once you find a reasonable price, go for it. Maybe it won’t come across as a fire-sale, but you’ll pay much more in the future as prices continuously rise.
Or Last-Minute Flights
Organizing every bit of your upcoming journey is the best way to spend less. Yet, for some emergency, business, or short-notice trips, you may not have the luxury of planning upfront. At this point, make the most out of last-minute flights. Remember, unique deals get most likely struck for off-season flights, undesirable hours, or canceled trips.
Open and inspect fare deal sites such as Expedia and Orbitz and then compare all the rates you find online. The critical ingredient is to keep checking these pages frequently for new offers. More often than not, travel agencies can be your best friend in the pursuit of travel packages on short notice. People cancel trips for various reasons so you can enjoy their arrangement for as cheap as half the initial price.
Always follow your preferred airlines on social media and networks and check their sites regularly. Most ultimate-minute deals get posted there, so don’t let them pass by your side unnoticed. Even better, try calling the airline to see if they’re currently offering anything out of the ordinary.
Search For Special Deals
Are you hooked to unique deals? As luck might have it, airlines also enter the game of special shopping days. To name a few, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and New Year’s Eve appear as the most widespread in global terms. Yet, always check the baseline fares before a significant discount as sometimes sales are just a marketing trick.
If you decide to give the Black Friday weekend a go, start exploring in the morning. Outstanding bargains come out early, and as interest grows, prices gradually increase. However, not booking on Black Friday is not the end of the world. The promotion, with even better rates, may continue throughout Cyber Monday. Even Travel Deal Tuesday is a viable opportunity to grab a special-priced boarding pass.
Further on, subscribe to the newsletters of major airlines, and they’ll keep you informed of exclusive deals. Whenever they have a 20% discount or waived additional services, you’ll know well in advance. Exclusive deals get regularly posted on the social networks of airlines such as Facebook and Instagram, too.
Use Your Points And Miles
Have you considered signing up for the reward programs of your preferred airlines? Well, if you haven’t, it is high time to become a member of travel clubs. Loyalty programs are your access to cheap, sometimes even free flights, hotel stays, and other travel perks.
Anyways, don’t fret if you have no points earned. What you must do is reach the minimum spend after you sign up for a reward card. Paying the right amount at the right time might often land you extreme bonus points enough for a free flight.
Generally, you have two options at disposal. One is to stick with reward cards of particular airlines. The other is to procure a general travel card that redeems miles and points across a wide range of air companies. The underlying requirement to earn free miles is to reach a particular limit in spending within a given period.
Use A Travel Rewards Credit Card For Cashback
Do you feel cozy when flying with your airline of choice? If yes, use the fact that you’re a frequent flier to your benefit. Become an elite member of their travel program or tie your credit card to the preferred airline and get your money back.
The difference with travel cash-back cards is that your rewards come in dollars. Note that some travel cards grant you side perks such as hotel bookings, insurances, or ancillary services for free. Conversely, cash-back cards are less expensive and offer more versatile rewards. Your best shot is to find cards that earn you at least 2% back.
We also suggest you pay the utmost attention to the terms of cash-back cards. Annual fees can range from $0 to as much as $60, so focus on this before signing up. Also, check if the travel card offers welcome bonuses and under which conditions. Lastly, consult the interest rates and the amount you pay per transaction.
Of course, the best credit cards for those with low credit scores won’t have this perk. Most of the standard ones, however, give travel rewards.
Search For Individual Tickets When Flying As A Group
Keep in mind this simple rule: Individual tickets cost less than bulk tickets! The explanation behind this principle is that air companies always present you with the highest price for a group of boarding cards.
Hence, if you’re flying with friends or you’re a family of four, always inspect the prices of individual and group tickets. Imagine you’re a four-member family, so the airline would attempt to find seats next to each other. Typically, it will offer the highest rate that can lead to a sizable additional expense.
Therefore, always seek tickets like you’re traveling solo. Later on, in the checkout process, you can select seats to sit next to your family members.
Consider Hidden City Ticketing
Some people go a step further and book flights with a layover that is their final destination. The rationale behind this is that sometimes, flying with layouts is way less expensive than with direct lines. In short, you get off at the first layout and don’t board the connecting flight.
Be particularly wary of such booking schemes as some airlines might fine you and cancel your return trip. If you miss flights often and the air carrier detects your sneaky ways, consequences might be far-fetching. Also, avoid checking your baggage when planning to go with the ‘hidden city’ strategy. Otherwise, it will go to the final destination.
Moreover, there are web pages like Skiplagged that find hidden city tickets for you. Anyways, this is a debatable hack and considered highly illegal. On top of that, the hidden city approach is not for everyone and mustn’t be overused. Occasionally, you can grab significant discounts, but at your own risk.
Book Flights On Websites Of Other Countries
Have you thought about booking in another currency? Following this strategy will get you lower-priced tickets depending on the current strength of your money. Airlines in countries with weaker currencies offer up to 40% cheaper tickets.
Everything you must do is search via the website of the foreign country. Or check the option on the web page to alter the currency in incognito and location-free mode. You’ll book the same airline, the same flight, and the corresponding ancillary services but in a different currency. Plus, for a much cheaper price.
We suggest you use credit cards that won’t charge you insanely for foreign currency transactions. Otherwise, your saving attempts will fail!
Look For Airline Error And Sale Errors
Error fares are a real feast for keen travelers to snitch seriously discounted fares. They occur when the air company or a third party sells tickets at the wrong price. Mistakes do happen when you work with numbers, and there’s always this employee who entered the numbers inaccurately.
Your best shot in such cases is to act super-fast. Error fares won’t remain available for long since airlines tend to fix technical glitches and currency conversion mishaps very quickly. Try to be faster than them by having everything about the upcoming journey figured out.
Do you wonder how to find error flights? Pay close attention and sign up to the alerts of sites specialized in monitoring airfares. Visit pages like Secret Flights and Airfare Watchdog that summarize slashed ticket rates in one spot. Skyscanner is another option to spot mistake fares.
Consider Buying Tickets In Bulk
No doubt, you have come to the same conclusion during past trips. The more flights you book for an individual passenger with the same airline alliance, the cheaper fares you get. Meaning, a return ticket is always less expensive than two one-way tickets.
Moreover, have you heard of multi-city flights? Get ready because this is a massive breakthrough in the air industry. When you use the multi-city search on Skyscanner’s website and book with the same airline, massive savings are guaranteed. Moreover, airline alliances offer extraordinary round the world tickets and regional passes at a discounted rate.
An extra hint is to bundle flights with hotel bookings or rental cars. If you purchase all these services from the same company, there’s no doubt you’ll set aside a few hundred dollars. When it comes to resort destinations, savings rise at an even faster rate. Whatever flight you decide to reserve, always check and compare all options available.
It’s a fact that air travel has become more accessible in the past few years, especially transatlantic flights. On top of that, if you follow our suggestions, you’ll get to learn the benefits of frugal flight booking. Forget about endless price fluctuations and disorganized online searches. Be fast, be smart, and the savings will come themselves.
Did you like our extensive guide on booking inexpensive flights? If so, refer us back to your friends and subscribe to our newsletter for more creative money-saving tips. Also, feel free to share your strategies for finding cheap fares in the comment area below.
What is the least expensive day to book a flight?
The debate over which is the best day to book flights has long been ongoing. Yet, most would agree that Tuesday is the prime day to check airlines and reserve. If you want to be on the safe side, try booking somewhere around 3 p.m. Eastern Time for the best deals. Nevertheless, don’t rely on this approach too heavily as deals vary frequently.
How can I book a cheap airline ticket?
All of the ideas above are a sure guide to cheap flights. Once again, make sure you search in secret mode and try several search engines. Then, book as early as possible and regularly check flight deals and sales. Finally, be open to new destinations and airlines to make the most of your budget. The more flexible you are related to travel, the less it will cost you.
Where can I find flights for cheap?
Cheap flights are a common sight if you’re pliant in flying dates and destinations. When it comes to spots for cheap airfare, the websites and social networks of airlines are your best travel buddy. Secondly, fit Skyscanner into your regular travel search routine. Find other best rate flights with the help of Travelocity, Expedia, and Google Flights. Never book before you make sure you’ve exhausted all available options.
What day is the cheapest to buy a plane ticket?
Most theories point out that Tuesday is the best day to buy a plane ticket. Though some people reckon this as a myth, we have found amazingly lower prices when attempting to book Tuesday afternoon. At this time precisely, airlines make their price-match adjustments. Conversely, there is no exact day considered to be the cheapest to fly, while Sunday is usually the most expensive.
26 thoughts on “How To Book Inexpensive Flights”
There are hidden costs. If you do not pay attention the cheap flight becomes the most expensive one.
Booking last-minute flights is always the best option in my opinion
I can not manage to books flights online. Travel agency is the best option for me.
What about charter flights? I think they are the best option.
Great article, I always learn something from your articles. Thanks
There are to many different airlines. You should spend days and days looking for the best deals. Sometimes it is enormous loss of time.
My friend usually book tickets very cheap a few months in advance. She chooses the destination according to the cheapest flights. And it really pays off.
How to be flexible with the dates? Usually we all know when we have a vacation. And the holidays are too busy to travel.
Booking multiple flights is always a good option and the cheaper one.
The tropic destinations which are on my bucket list usual are the most expensive for travel. Maybe I should spend some time on the net to find the cheapest options. I would really like to visit Maldives or the islands in Indonesia
Some of the air flight companies are cheaper than the others of the same destination. And they offer a lot of discounts. So check before you book
Cheap flights? Well yes
Thank you for the tips.
Air flight tickets are too expensive. Especially with the whole family going on a vacation. It instantly cuts your vacation budget for a half. Maybe I should try your tips. This way if I get cheaper tickets, we will have more money to spend on a vacation.
Like the way you explain things. The choice of topics is always interesting.
I don’t like layovers. I always book direct flights.
So you are suggesting vice versa scheme. Choose the cheapest flights and then decide the destination and the dates. Maybe a good idea.
Looking forward for your next article. Useful tips all the time
I fly with the same company for almost 10 years. And they give me mileage and discounts all the time.
Love flying. I always go everywhere where possible by plane.
This year the flights are inexpensive. Probably because of the situation with the pandemic
I am going to Europe next month. And believe it or not the ticket is not expensive as usual is.
I fly frequently. And using points and miles really cut on my flight expenses.
Cutting on expenses in everything even for a holiday when we should be relaxed. It became our prime goal as a matter of fact.
I’ve never tried the layovers. But surely, I will if it costs less