With an ever increasing number of travel sites available, booking your plane tickets has become an easy and hassle free task. However, all too often, we end up paying more than we bargained for. We, the frazzled passengers’ also get duped by the airlines and their no limits on what-they’ll-charge-us-for fees. Hence this guide will assist you in making your travel easy on your pocket and your stress level.
We have compiled a list of the greatest money saving tips for your travel.
1. Know the 24 hour rule
Once you have booked your plane ticket, go to the airline site the next morning and verify whether the price of your ticket is still the same or has it gone down.
If the price has decreased, you can cancel your ticket and more often than not, you can rebook with the newer cheaper price, without paying any penalty.
2. Be on the lookout for last-minute discounted deals
Sign up for the airline alerts and newsletters as this will help you to know of any last-minute deals that the airlines are offering. Often, the airlines give special deals, especially close to a big weekend holiday, when they are unable to fill up their seats.
The airline might email their offers on a Tuesday, and you may fly the following Friday or a Saturday and benefit from last minute deals.
3. Always look for the cheaper fare
There is a wonderful app available called the Kayak explore tool. This helps you to search for multiple airline tickets at the same time. What this means is with Kayak you can set a budget for yourself and see which airlines offer you the best deals, on your particular budget and to which all destinations.
4. Wednesday is the cheapest day to fly
A noted travel site, FlyDealFare, states that Wednesday is the cheapest day to travel, especially for domestic travel. The reason for this is as that this is the day with the most seats available, hence better supply and therefore more empty seats to fill, which requires the airlines to offer cheap discounts to fill the plane.
5. Book your ticket on a Tuesday
As per the same site FlyDealFare, it is also important to know when to book and thus Tuesday 3 pm Eastern Time is the best time to book your plane ticket, especially if you are planning to travel domestic.
6. Find deals on Facebook and Twitter
Airlines have been quick to take advantage of the ever growing popularity of social media sites, such as Facebook and Twitter. They use these sites to make announcements of their special deals and offers, however you have to be quick to avail these discounts as they go pretty fast. So follow the airline page on Facebook and be informed about their special sales.
7. Mix and match your airline
These days most airlines sell economical one way tickets to many destinations. Take advantage of this and fly with two different airlines. So you depart on a particular flight and return from another. You can even fly from different airports.
8. It pays to be a frequent flier
Become a member of the frequent flier program and benefit from special discounts. You can even use your credit card, which is tied to a particular airline and receive special deals. What’s more, you can find out whether your credit card points can be redeemed for any travel miles offers or travel gifts.
9. Early morning flights
Along with a specific day of the week to travel, there is a specific time also which is the cheapest to fly this is the early morning time. After this, the best times to fly are during or after lunch time and around dinner time.
10. Subscribe to free alerts
The site, flydealfare.com, informs you as soon as good deals are on offer by various airlines. This site has people working non-stop to find excellent deals going around and inform you immediately. The benefit of this site is that it will update you when it finds actual discounts and not when the tickets go down by a mere dollar or so.
11. Use “Flight hackers” to sniff out great deals
This site also helps you in searching flight discounts which mere computers are unable to do. For a fee of $29, all refundable, you can specify your list of demands and they will try to find the best deals for you.
12. Hunt for flight deals early in the morning
The best time to search for special offers are early in the morning, so be on the lookout for deals released at this time. Although not a rule, there are more chances to find good offers at this time.
13. Don’t hesitate to take the red eye flight
These are the flight times that leave after 9 pm and arrive before 5 am. Most people avoid taking these due to the inconvenience to sleep, but they are most convenient on the pocket. So next time you are looking for a discounted travel deal, do not falter in picking these timings.
14. Deals on reward sites
Online sites which give away free airline miles, such as e-rewards, offer excellent opportunities to get hold of tickets which can be redeemed for free miles. Other sites such as e-Miles, let travellers cash in free miles into airfare, hotel benefits and gift cards from Amazon.
15. Search online
When booking your tickets, try to search on multiple sites for better deals. Do not stick to just one, or only the bigger sites. Fly Deal Fare is one site which offers great deals and discounts and is very informative for your travel bookings.
16. Book in advance
Always book your ticket six weeks prior to your departure. This is because the airfare drops below the average price.
17. Know your airline’s airport hubs
Most airlines have special deals with certain city airports. This means that even though that particular city might not be your destination but on a round trip it can become a layover and thus save you additional money on your ticket.
18. Be flexible with your travel plans
This means that rather than travelling in peak season you may try to fly a couple of days before or after your initial travel plan.
19. Opt for small carriers
Most search engines do not show airfare rates of smaller carriers, but never overlook them when booking your tickets.
20. Combine road and air travel
Bigger airlines have a monopoly on certain airports and they allow them to charge extra. To counter this, look for an airport which might be further away from your place, but which will offer better discounts, even when keeping in mind the road trip you might have to take to reach the airport, say 50, 75 or even 100 miles away.
21. Go for connecting flights
Plan your travel in such a way that, rather than taking a direct flight, you take connecting flights for your round trip. This ensures good discounts on your airfare.