We invite you to explore the best strategies, techniques and resources
regarding how to find the cheapest flights on the planet.
It is well known that the cheapest flight will not be found on one particular site every single time. Due to this fact it is imperative to check numerous sites before committing your money. The quickest way to do this is by using a metasearch engine or flight aggregator. These are clever sites that search numerous sites for you with one single user query.
1.) There is not a single flight comparison site in existence which searches every single travel site on the internet. Each comparison site tends to have different relationships with different travel agents and airlines thereby producing varying results. It is very unpredictable as to which one will produce the cheapest result.
However good you are at finding cheap flights - there is always a possibility that someone out there is better than you. In fact new services have sprung up which allow you to outsource your flight needs to travel experts who have made a veritable career out of finding the cheapest possible flights on the planet. these experts or flight hackers have spent hours upon hours researching various routes and their knowledge can often beat the best price any flight aggregator can discover on its own.
Services such as flightfox, flystein and chimpando all offer to utilise their experts to find the best deals in return for a finder's fee which varies according to the type of flight you require. The fee usually starts from around $27 for a basic return flight. These sites state they will find a cheaper flight for you - guaranteeing to save you more money than the finders fee or you get your money back. Well worth a try as there is nothing really to lose. The following points in our list utilise some of the tactics used by flight hackers to shave some extra money off your ticket.
Hidden city ticketing has been a well known flight hack for those in the know for a number of years now. The basic principle is that if you wanted to fly from city A to city B it is sometimes cheaper to book a flight from city A to city C with a stopover in city B. What you would need to do is simply get off the flight at city B and not continue on to city C.
There are a few downsides to this type of behaviour - 1.) is that it is sometimes against the terms of the airline and you may have to pay a penalty for this type of activity such as having your frequent flier account suspended 2.) You can not check in luggage as it will only be available at city C.
Some new sites have sprung up in order to find these hidden city tickets - one such site was skiplagged which was actually sued by united and american airlines for promoting such fares. In the end the case was settled as its not technically illegal just something the airlines dont care too much for. Nevertheless if you are not concerned with the downsides of this strategy it is an avenue well worth exploring.
Airlines often give discounts for children under the age of 12 and for adults over the age of 65.
If your child is under the age of 2 you will usually pay a discounted infant fare. You should have the option of carrying the child in your lap. If you choose to use the seat the fare could be increased from an infant fare to a child fare.
Discounts vary from airline to airline, nevertheless It is imperative that you mention the ages of your child whether you book your flights on the internet or not.
Similarly with senior citizens, you should be eliglible for a discount up to 10% of the actual flight.
Just make sure you enter your ages accurately when doing your preliminary searches. Prices could vary quite drastically if you fail to do so.
Many airlines offer frequent flier programmes which allow you to collect air miles or points whenever you fly on their carriers and allow you to redeem those points for free or discounted flights in the future.
These programmes have partnerships with numerous other companies allowing you to collect points when spending at those venues - These other avenues include everything from using particular credit cards to spending at various hotels.
You should make sure you redeem your miles in good time as they usually have a time limit on when they can be used. Accounts are usually deactivated if no activity takes place for around 36 months
You can also collect points if you fly with any of the airlines under a particular programme. For example the following airlines all operate under the one world partner airlines programme, and you can collect frequent flier miles whenever you travel with them:
British Airways - American Airlines - Cathay Pacific - Finnair - Iberia - Japan Airlines - LAN - Malev Hungarian Airlines - Qantas - Royal Jordanian
You may find yourself in the unfortunate position of having your flight overbooked.
Airlines tend to overbook flights occasionally due to the fact that a certain percentage of passengers inevitably fail to show up.
If you find you cannot board your plane you may be entitled to compensation - a miscellaneous charges order may be offered to you which could range in value from $200 - $400.
Make sure you take advantage of all your rights and ask for compensation if anything like this should ever happen to you
Even though the advent of the internet and online booking has revolutionised the way we book our flights the need for travel agents has not yet come to an end.
You may find that in particular areas where a particular ethnic group reside you could find discounts to their homeland due to special deals they have negotiated with the airlines due to the volume of visitors they send there.
For example Southall (in London, England) is a centre for the south east asian community and you can find remarkable deals back to south east asia if you asked travel agents for flights in that locality.
When checking for flights always check airports at a close proximity to your nearest airport for flights to your required destination.
You could end up with significant savings. It is a similar situation with the arrival airport - always check alternate airports to see if you can get a cheaper deal.
For example - if travelling to London - Check flights to Gatwick, Stansted, Luton and Stansted aswell as Heathrow international airport.
The decision ultimately boils down to whether you want to save a little extra for the price of travelling a little further for a cheaper flight.
Due to the extremely busy nature of airlines and airfare pricing - a phenomenon known as error fares are sometimes published.
It most commonly occurs when fuel surcharges, airport tax and other fees are not added onto the final price of the flight.
If you do go ahead and book an error fare it may be cancelled by the airline after they notice their mistake - however there have been instances where the error fare has been honoured.
Our search engine will quickly find the best fares found in the entire year and any error fares will quickly show up.
Kayak has a handy feature called "price trends" based on data from over a billion flight search queries. They will indicate whether the price is good to book now or you should wait for prices to drop.
Once you have located your flight and you are happy with the price you have found you should proceed to book your flights immediately.
One of the common ways in which people lose money is by procrastinating on buying the flight only for it to snapped up by someone else.
If you require hotel accommodation and car hire as well as a flight you may receive discounts by booking your needs altogether.
Expedia is a popular site which often gives an overall discount on the entire package if all things are booked together on their site.
What I would recommend is to use the best comparison sites for flights, hotels and car hire - check the total price - and then compare it with a package deal.
Then simply book the one who wins.
You may receive discounts on your flight if you look for very early morning flights or very late night flights.
This is generally inconsequential if flying long haul but for short haul is likely to be a significant factor.
Generally speaking people dislike travelling at these hours hence airlines drop their prices to entice people into their aircrafts and fill their seats.
The best times you choose to fly would be during the week. namely on a Tuesday, Wednesday or sometimes Thursday.
Weekends tend to be busier and airlines tend to raise their prices because they are aware of the demand associated with these days.
As a rule of thumb I would always recommend checking prices three days before and after your preferred departure time.
Cheapflightsfinder.com has a handy calendar function which allows you to see 3 days before and after effortlessly.
One vacation searching strategy which people often use is to research alternate routes by flying to a secondary nearby destination and then take a journey by road to your primary destination.
For example, booking an airplane ticket from Atlanta to Paris could set you back around $900. To cut the price of this international journey you could take a cheaper flight to a nearby destination, such as luxemburg, and in the process save a significant amount of money. Then you could take a road trip to Paris which would enable you to take in the sights of two different countries in one vacation.
It is generally cheaper to book your flights online, simply due to the fact that agencies can cut down on staff costs by not having to employ an operater to take your calls and book your flights.
Just check that you are purchasing from a reputable site and that the page you enter your details into is a secure page signified by the 'https' found at the beginning of the url. (The web address)
There are literally hundreds of sites out there claiming to weed out the best deals for you and sending them directly to your inbox. Some of the best that I have found are those of Travelzoo (UK and USA), Dealchecker (UK) and Airfarewatchdog (North America only).
Travelzoo is famous for it's weekly newsletter that finds the top 20 best travel deals for you - It currently has over 12 million subscribers.
Airfarewatchdog (North America only) is another site which tracks all airlines aswell as promo codes and notifies you about the best deals directly to your inbox.
Dealchecker is another site which offers a weekly newsletter which contains their top ten hand picked deals. They often pick up pretty good bargains making it a worthwhile resource to sign up to.
I recommend you sign up to these sites to be notified of great deals as soon as they appear.
Even though my top advice would be to check prices through flight aggregators / flight comparison sites first, you should note that some companies do not allow their fares to be displayed on their systems.
Travelocity, Priceline and Southwest Airlines are all known not to display their deals on flight comparison sites so it is always worth checking their sites seperately to see if they can beat any offers you may have got elsewhere.
Travelocity and Priceline offer particularly good deals on long haul flights so it would be worth checking their sites if planning to travel slightly further afield.
Students often acquire discounts for flights via specialized travel agents which specialize in student travel.
Student Universe is one agency which is famous for finding cheap student deals.
There are also particular cards you can get which give you not only discounts on flights but many other venues aswell.
If you are in Full Time education and under the age of 26 you should apply for the ISIC Card which not only gives you discounts on flights but can also cut the price off cinema tickets, museums, restaurants and numerous shops.
If you a student of any age or are a member of faculty or teaching staff you may be entitled to the "International Student Exchange card". Numerous benefits are available to holders of this card which is recognised in 58 countries.
Here we present some of the top books to help you on your way:
How To Find Cheap Flights: Practical Tips The Airlines Don't Want You To Know
How to Travel the World on $50 a Day
The Savvy Backpacker's Guide to Europe on a Budget
Adventure Of A Lifetime: Travel The World, Escape 9-5 And Live A Life Of Freedom On A Budget (2017)
Their is a wealth of free advice to be found online regarding tips and tricks on how to cut down the cost of your flight, you just need to know where to look.
Here we present some of the best resources to continue your research on travelling within a budget.
The next five entries are the best tools available for discovering the cheapest fares. We show you how to make the most out of each tool to score the best deals.
However, for those who want to score the best possible deals its the "flexible destination" search which will show you truly cheap fares. You can either search from your local airport to "everywhere" or keep the search generic like 'UK to USA' to show best fares found by other users searching on those routes.
Kayak has a handy feature on its explore page. Simply input your local airport - then use the filters to decide what type of flights you wish to see. You can specify what season you wish to travel in or simply leave it at anytime and anywhere. Then prices will load on an interactive map showing you the best prices found by other Kayak users.
One word of warning - the prices may be cached so you will have to search for them afresh once a fare is found, upon which it may transpire that the particular fare you first saw is no longer available.
Google flight search is simply the quickest flight search available on the planet right now. Results show up almost instantaneously. With powerful maps to show the cheapest flights from your destination and a powerful flexible flight calendar, it is an excellent resource to discover optimum times to fly.
The only downside is that sometimes Google flights can be beaten by other aggregators - our best advice would be to use Google to find the best days to fly using their flexible calendar tools and then plug those dates into other search engines to see if you can get an even better deal.
As mentioned above we recommend using Google to discover the best times to fly - after which we advise you to head on over to www.cheapflightsfinder.com and plug those travel details into our search engine. After that you can quickly compare the leading flight search engines which will often beat prices found by Google flights.
Alternately you can use CheapFlightsFinder's calendar function found under flexible dates. Please note that this calendar is powered by Skyscanner's API and only shows fares found by other users in the last 15 days.
The next five entries are the cheapest airlines which you should follow:
Great Prices for - USA Domestic