How to hack flight prices
Flights can be the most expensive part of taking a trip. Read this full article for 4 easy to use tips to help you find the best flight prices for your travel journeys. Knowing a few of these easy tricks can help you save big $$$ and afford to travel more!
TIP NUMBER ONE
Did you know that there are cheaper days of the week to travel? The most expensive times to book a flight are Thursday evenings, Friday evenings, Sunday mornings/afternoons. If you fly on days that are typically less busy, it will not only save you time and stress in the airport but also save you money. The cheapest days of the week to fly are Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday.
So next time you're planning a weekend vacation fly out Wednesday and back on Saturday instead of Thursday to Saturday. Or try taking a week-long vacation from Wednesday to Tuesday.
Cherish week long vacations are from Saturday to Friday. This helps our travelers money on flights, only requires them to take 5 consecutive days off work, and allows them to have two full recuperation days from travel upon returning home.
Want some more specific details on the exact days this year (2022) that will be the cheapest for flights to different parts of the world? Check out this article.
TIP NUMBER TWO
Don't let a good flight deal slip through your fingers. I hope this isn't news to you, but your actions and searches on the internet are being tracked. With the accuracy of data tracking in our current technology the more often you look at the same flights on the same days of travel the chances are that it will rise in price.
Things you can do to avoid this:
1) Search for all of your flights on an incognito window. I always suggest searching for flights on a private window on both your computer and on your phone. This way your cache and cookies are not being tracked.
2) Book the good flight deal the first time you see it. Almost all airlines have an option to purchase a plane ticket that includes modifications and cancellations. If you see a good flight deal, go ahead and book it with the option to modify or cancel. This way if you found the best deal, you can keep your ticket but if a better one comes along you can cancel or modify your previously purchased ticket for no additional fees.
TIP NUMBER THREE
You can book two separate round-trip flights to get to your destination. Often, you can get significant savings from booking two separate flights. Book the first flight at a cheaper rate to a destination close to where you'd like your final destination to be. Then book a second flight through a regional carrier to your final destination.
This has saved me money on several occasions during my travels. Most recently, I went to Kauai, Hawaii. There was a direct flight from Atlanta to Honolulu what was significantly cheaper than booking a flight with a final destination of Kauai. So, I booked the round trip flight through Honolulu and booked a second flight through Hawaii Airlines from Honolulu to Kauai. Even with booking the flight through one airline, I would have had a layover in Los Angeles or Honolulu to have a final destination in Kauai. Instead, I decided to book my own second flight to gain additional savings.
Things to keep in mind -
If you check a bag, you will need to collect your luggage and re-check your baggage to your final destination.
If your first flight is delayed and miss your connecting flight, the airlines typically do not take responsibility for connecting flights that are missed not associated with your first ticket.
Some examples of regional carriers:
United States: Alaskan Airlines, Allegiant Air, Frontier, Hawaiin Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest, Spirit
Europe: Norweigan Air Shuttle, EasyJet, AirBaltic, WOW Air, Pegasus Airlines, Cheap-O Air, RyanAir
Asia: AirAsia, IndiGo, Jetstar Asia, Scoot, Peach, SpiceJet, Tiger Airways, Skymark Airlines
Africa: Kulula, FastJet, Fly Africa, Mango, Fly 540, Jambo Jet
South America: Jetsmart, Fly Bondi, EcoJet, Avianca Airlines, Easy Fly
TIP NUMBER FOUR
There are so many great apps and websites out there to help you find, track, and purchase the best flight for your travels. Utilize the apps available to you track flight prices and find the cheapest option across multiple airlines.
I highly suggest looking at prices across multiple airlines before booking. Also, utilize one of these apps to track flight prices. These apps are built to notify you when flight prices will go up or down. Tracking a flight can help you purchase your plane ticket at the right time if you have exact dates of travel in mind.
A few of my favorite flight apps/websites:
Google Flights - this is my personal favorite tool for looking at flight prices. Google Flights checks prices across all airlines and compares them in a list right next to one another. You can also look at flight prices in a map view if you are flexible on where you'd like to travel.
Hopper - is best utilized on an app on your phone. This app analyzes billions of prices daily to predict how prices will change and tells you whether to buy or wait.
Skyscanner - I used Skyscanner while I was backpacking Europe. It was super helpful to look at flight prices across multiple airlines and see when flight prices were the cheapest day by day.
Momondo - is a web based platform to help you find and book the best rates for your next flight. I found a Las Vegas flight on this site for $42.
You made it this far in the article, here's your reward. A few bonus tips below:
The best way to save on flights is to be flexible. Both with your destination and your dates of travel. This does not always work for everyone, but if you are able to book your vacation simply by looking at flight prices instead of having an exact destination and exact dates in mind it can ultimately save you big $$$.
If you find yourself traveling primarily with one or two airlines, sign up for their travel rewards program. I live in Atlanta, which is a hub for Delta Airlines. Almost all of the flights I book are with Delta. By signing up for their SkyMiles program, I earn miles every time I fly and it helps me earn credits and discounts off future flights.
If it works within your finances, open a travel rewards credit card. I left this as a bonus tip because there are a ton of potential risks with travel hacking and opening too many travel rewards credit cards. However, if it works for you and your personal finances this is a BIG way to save on flights and future travel costs. To read more about some suggested travel rewards cards for 2022, check out this article.