We have been planning lots of travel this year and with that comes lots of plane tickets which can really add up. I’m not against spending more for a better product. High quality shoes? Go for it. Quilted toilet paper? Worth it. But paying $300+ more for the same flight? That’s a no from me. One thing I’ve learned is that travel doesn’t have to be expensive, even if you’re flying international. Today I’m sharing with you all of my tips and tricks for finding the cheapest airfare to wherever you want to go!
Use Travel Site Subscriptions for Cheap Flight Alerts
When Brett and I were deciding where to go on vacation this year, I subscribed to a few travel sites that send out cheap flight alerts. My favorites are Pomelo and Scott’s Cheap Flights. Essentially, you visit the site and enter your email address. They scan thousands of airlines for the cheapest flights to all kinds of destinations. If you get an email you’re interested in, they’ll give you info on how to book to get the best price.
This is really great if you want to travel but have flexible plans. This is how we found our round-trip flights to Italy for under $400 a person! I use the basic service, but you can upgrade to Premium to make sure you don’t miss any deals, even during peak season & holidays.
Set Flexible Dates When Looking For Flights
Expedia is a great resource to book flights and has an option to set flexible dates when booking. Once you enter the flight details for your trip, click the drop down bar for flexible dates. It’s a super easy way to make sure you’re getting the best price. I use this for almost every trip – unless it’s a work trip, you can probably stay a day longer or leave on a Tuesday instead of a Wednesday if it means saving $200.
Turn on Google Flight Alerts
I love using GoogleFlights to check airfare prices. It’s easy to use and will redirect you to individual airlines to book your flights when you’re ready. One of my favorite features to use is turning on flight alerts. Just fill in the flight details you’re looking for, and switch on flight alerts. You’ll get notified if the price drops. Kayak also has this option & will recommend if you should buy immediately or wait based on the price forecast.
Check Early & Monitor for Prices
This one is a bit obvious, but it really is the best way to make sure you’re not paying extra for the same flight. Even if you turn on flight alerts, check back regularly for your flight; flight alerts will only track the dates you enter, so if you are willing to switch your dates around a bit, you could find a better deal.
I start monitoring prices two to three months before domestic travel and eight months for international. You’ll need more time to plan the other logistics of your trip if you’re traveling overseas, so keep an eye out early!
Consider Travel During Shoulder Seasons
The travel year is generally divided into three seasons: peak (when most people travel), off-peak (when it’s not great to travel there), and shoulder. Shoulder season is in-between peak and off-peak seasons – it’s not swarming with tourists and booked full, but it’s also not covered with snow or all of the locals on vacation and all the businesses closed.
For example, in Italy, peak season is June through August and off season is November through March. So many travel guides and friends recommended traveling in September or October because the weather is still pleasant, but it’s not as busy as the summer. Wherever you want to go, just do a little research on its busy season and off-season, then pick a time that doesn’t fall in either. These prices are usually lower because not as many people are fighting for the same seats.
I hope you use some of these tricks to find the cheapest flights possible! You know I love a good deal and that definitely extends to travel. Let me know what trip you are planning and where you’d love to go next!