Hey there my fellow travel enthusiasts and welcome to my post where we will check out my 6 tips for booking a cheap airfare online this year. Looking for cheap airfare online can be a daunting task, especially if you’re not familiar with the process.
With so many different airlines and travel websites to choose from, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. However, with a little bit of research and some insider tips, you can score great deals on airfare and save money on your next trip.
Tips for Booking a Cheap Airfare Online
As above, booking an airfare can be a daunting task and the question of “could I have got that cheaper if I’d have waited?” is one I commonly ask myself as well. And in my experience, there are so many variables that can go into the changing a flight costs – and just as many old wives tales as well.
Se below I have tried to give it all to you as clearly as I can, but I would also love to hear your advice and processes below as well. Anyway, let’s get stuck in!
1. Understand Airfare Pricing
When booking a cheap airfare online, it’s important to understand how airfare pricing works. Airline ticket prices are affected by a variety of factors including the time of year, the day of the week, the length of the flight and the popularity of the destination.
One important factor to consider is the fare class. Different fare classes offer different levels of service and flexibility, and they can have a big impact on the price of your ticket. We all know the general common fare classes that can include economy, premium economy, business and first class.
However, all fare classes are not the same. Some airlines offer a basic economy fare that includes only a seat and a personal item, while others include additional perks – for a price – like checked baggage, seat selection and in-flight meals. It’s important to read the fine print and understand exactly what’s included in your ticket price.
When searching for cheap airfare online, it’s important to be flexible with your travel dates and destinations. Prices can vary significantly depending on the time of year and the popularity of the destination, so consider traveling during off-peak times or to less popular destinations to save money.
Another option to save some cash on tickets is to choose segmented flights as well. A segmented flight is that stops at one or two locations on the way rather than directly from point A to point B. The reduced cost is due to a number of reasons such as government incentives for national carriers to bring tourists into the country – even if just overnight – or to make better use of planes.
The thing here is that for the reduced price, you travel time will be significantly longer and you may have to spend a few hours in an airport between as well.
Check out these: Tips to Save Money at the Airport
2. Choose the Right Airline
When booking a cheap airfare online, choosing the right airline can make a big difference in your overall cost. Here are some tips to help you make the right choice:
Look for Low-Cost Carriers
Low-cost carriers such as Southwest, Frontier, Allegiant and Spirit are known for offering affordable fares that are often lower than the base fares than traditional carriers like American and United.
The payoff here however it that they may charge extra fees for things such as checked baggage, seat selection and in-flight snacks. If you’re willing to forego some of these amenities, you can save money by flying with a low-cost carrier.
Sales and Promotions
Airlines often run sales and promotions that can help you save money on your airfare. Keep an eye out for these deals by signing up for airline newsletters and following them on social media. You can also use fare tracking tools to monitor prices and get alerts when fares drop.
Consider the Overall Value
While a low base fare may seem like a great deal, it’s important to consider the overall value of the airline. For example, Southwest Airlines is known for its free checked bags and no change fees, which can save you money in the long run.
American Airlines however offers perks like priority boarding and lounge access for frequent flyers. When comparing fares, take into account any additional fees and the overall value of the airline.
Flexibility can also help you save money on airfare. If you’re able to be flexible with your travel dates or destination, you may be able to find a better deal.
Use fare comparison tools to compare prices across different dates and airports.
Check out these: 6 Tips To Save Money On Travel
3. Utilize Online Tools and Platforms
When it comes to booking a cheap airfare online, one of the most important things you can do is to utilize the various tools and platforms available to you. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of these resources:
Use Search Engines and Comparison Sites
One of the easiest ways to find the best deals on flights is to use search engines and comparison sites like Booking.com, Google Flights, Skyscanner and Kayak.
These sites allow you to search for flights based on your preferred dates, destination and budget and then compare prices across multiple airlines and booking sites.
My advice here is to compare these costs with those on the actual airline site. Sometimes they are cheaper!
Set Up Price Alerts
To stay on top of the latest deals and discounts, consider setting up price alerts through these same search engines and comparison sites.
This will allow you to receive notifications when prices drop or when new deals become available, so you can act quickly and snag the best deals before they’re gone.
Although flight deal emails are very very dangerous I will say haha!
Book Directly with Airlines
As I mentioned above, while third-party booking sites like Expedia can be a great way to save money on airfare, it’s often worth checking the airlines’ own websites as well.
Sometimes airlines offer exclusive deals and discounts that aren’t available through third-party sites, so it pays to do your research and compare prices across multiple platforms.
Use Online Coupons and Promo Codes
Finally, don’t forget to search for online coupons and promo codes before booking your flight. Many airlines and booking sites offer special discounts and promotions that can help you save even more money on your airfare.
Just be sure to read the fine print and double-check that the discount code is not only still valid before you book, but also for the type of flight you want as well.
4. Strategize Your Booking
When it comes to booking a cheap airfare online, strategizing your booking can make all the difference. Here are a few tips to help you save money on your next flight:
- Be Flexible: Flexibility is key when it comes to finding a cheap airfare online. Consider flying on weekdays or during off-peak hours to save money. Also, be open to flying into alternate airports that may be less expensive than your desired destination – Although watch those ground transport prices – I once paid 75 Pounds for a train ticket to Luton to save 45 Pounds on a flight!.
- Search for Flight Deals: Keep an eye out for flight deals and promotions. Sign up for airline newsletters and follow them on social media to stay informed. You can also use flight deal websites to find discounted airfares.
- Use Date Grid and Price Graph: Many online travel agencies offer date grids and price graphs that allow you to see the cheapest travel dates and prices for your desired route. Use these tools to your advantage when booking your flight.
- Consider Round-Trip Flights: Booking a round-trip flight can often be less expensive than booking two one-way flights. Be sure to compare prices for both options before making your final decision.
- Check Flight Times: Flights that depart early in the morning or late at night are often less expensive than those that depart during peak hours. Consider adjusting your travel times to save money on your airfare.
5. Maximize Credit Card and Reward Points
If you’re looking to save money on airfare, one of the best ways to do so is by maximizing your credit card and reward points. Here are a few tips to help you do just that:
- Sign up for a travel rewards credit card: Many credit cards offer travel rewards that can be redeemed for flights, hotel stays, and more. Look for a card that offers a sign-up bonus and a high rewards rate on travel purchases.
- Use your credit card for all travel purchases: To maximize your rewards, use your travel rewards credit card for all travel-related purchases including flights, hotels, rental cars and more.
- Consider a premium credit card: Premium credit cards tend to offer even more rewards and benefits for frequent travelers. These cards often come with high annual fees, but the rewards and benefits can more than make up for the cost.
- Keep an eye out for special promotions: Credit card companies often offer special promotions that can help you earn even more rewards. Keep an eye out for these promotions and take advantage of them when they’re available.
Check out these: Tips for Getting the Best Deals When Booking Hotels
6. Check Luggage and Extra Fees
When booking a cheap airfare online, it’s important to be aware of the potential extra fees that may come with your ticket. One of the most common fees is for checked luggage. Make sure to check your airline’s baggage policy before booking your ticket to avoid any surprises at the airport.
Some airlines offer a basic economy fare that may not include any checked luggage, so if you plan on bringing a lot of bags, it may be worth upgrading to a higher fare class. Keep in mind that even if your fare includes checked luggage, there may still be weight and size restrictions.
Another potential fee to watch out for is for carry-on luggage. Some airlines have strict size and weight limits for carry-on bags and if your bag exceeds these limits, you may be charged an extra fee. Make sure to check your airline’s carry-on policy before packing your bags.
In addition to baggage fees, there may be other hidden fees to be aware of when booking a cheap airfare online. For example, some airlines may charge extra for seat selection, priority boarding or in-flight meals and drinks. Be sure to read the fine print before booking your ticket to avoid any unexpected charges.
Overall, being aware of potential extra fees and reading your airline’s policies before booking can help you avoid any unpleasant surprises and ensure a smooth and stress-free travel experience.
What are the best flight booking websites for finding cheap airfare?
There are many flight booking websites available online that offer cheap airfare. Some of the popular ones are Expedia, Kayak, Skyscanner, Webjet and CheapOair. These websites compare prices from multiple airlines and provide you with the best deals.
Are there any tips for booking last minute flights at a lower cost?
Booking last minute flights can be expensive, but there are some tips that can help you save money. Try to book your tickets on weekdays instead of weekends as they are usually cheaper. Use flight booking websites that offer last minute deals and compare prices from multiple airlines. You can also consider booking connecting flights instead of direct flights as they are usually cheaper.
There you have it, my 6 tips for booking a cheap airfare online this year. As always, please let me how this article helped you or if there are any tricks that you get up to that are not on the list.
Also, please do not hesitate to comment below if you have any questions, concerns, or corrections or would like me to check anything else out for you.
Until next time.