It’s no secret that everyone wants the secret to booking cheap airline tickets. These days it’s easier than ever to compare prices, find deals, and book cheap, yet most of us end up spending more than we want on flights. With a few of the tips and tricks below, you really CAN save on airfare.
Timing matters. When you book, what day you leave, what time you leave – these are all important factors that, when combined, can drastically alter the price of your tickets. Keep these things in mind when you actually decide to book your flight:
- 24 hour rule – After you book, check the next morning to see if the price of your airfare fell. You usually have 24 hours after booking to get a refund or credit on the difference.
- Leave on a Wednesday – It’s the cheapest day to do it, says FareCompare.com, especially for domestic travel.
- Book on Tuesday at 3 EST – A study by Farecompare.com found this was the best time to buy airline tickets and shop for domestic travel.
- Book in advance – A revealing study from Airlines Reporting Corporation found that the best time to purchase your airfare is about six weeks prior to travel.
- Fly out early – The first flight of the morning is usually the cheapest, says U.S. News’ Daniel Bortz.
In addition to saving money by knowing when to book, it’s also important to know WHERE you can find deals on booking. Try some of these tips on which sites to use:
- Search multiple sites – Relying on only one site to give you the lowest cost can actually cost you. Kayak can help narrow your search with comparisons.
- Use social media – Airlines have been experimenting with blasting fares via social media, especially JetBlue. But you have to be fast: some deals can be gone within hours.
- AirfareWatchdog.com – With this site, you’ll get pinged when prices fall and receive some excellent deals.
- FlightFox – Much in the way Airfare Watchdog relies on a travel agent to sniff out the best deals, FlightFox uses multiple experts to do the hard work for you.
- Search the airline’s site – Airlines can host private sales, reserving the cream of the crop for their very own websites.
There are more ways to save, like racking up reward miles, using connecting flights and using alternatives to expensive luggage shipping companies, such as Bags® VIP luggage delivery service if you are traveling heavy. Shop smart and happy booking!