How to Find Cheap Airfare: Insider Secrets Exposed
When searching for airfare deals on domestic and international flights, one question immediately comes to mind: How to find cheap airfare? As a travel blogger for Puerto Vallarta, Mexico I’ve learned incredible travel tips that will save you money. Right here, right now I’m exposing travel secrets gleaned from travel experts. You too can learn to book flights like the pros. Here’s exactly how to find cheap airfare:
Keep this in mind: Airfare prices fluctuate several times daily AND the cost of airline tickets can dramatically change at various points throughout the week.
Book your flight on a Tuesday afternoon at 3 p.m. EST. Airlines update their databases mid-week. They tend to drop their prices on Tuesdays and then start raising their prices during the week. Start researching prices on Tuesdays between 12 a.m. and 3 p.m. EST. Travel experts know that if they wait until 3 p.m. EST to book their flights, this is when they can often snag airline tickets for less.
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Book your flight seven weeks in advance. Research shows this is the optimum time frame for finding the best airline deals to your chosen destination. However, when traveling to international destinations during high-season months, start looking for airline deals three to six months in advance. And whenever there are limited number of airlines servicing a particular destination or a limited number of airport options available, consider booking your flight a full six months out.
During holiday periods save money by booking your flight 3-1/2 months in advance. Airfare prices are based on supply and demand. Airline research shows that this is the optimum time to book for Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Easter, etc.
Best days of the week to travel: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday
Worst days of the week to travel: Friday and Sunday
Cheapest day of the week to fly: Wednesday
When pricing tickets online select the “flex days” option. This will allow you to view a calendar with airline ticket pricing by date. If your travel dates are flexible, you can save money by traveling a day or two before or after your desired travel date.
Be flexible with your travel plans. Instead of being firm about flying out from the airport nearest your home, expand your search to other nearby airports. This option may also present additional airlines that service your destination. Sometimes you can save a great deal of money on airfare if you’re willing to drive an hour or two to a different airport. And the savings can really add up when purchasing multiple tickets for a family vacation.
Experiment with the strategy of booking two one-way flights. Rather than booking round-trip airfare, look at the option of booking your two flights separately. Sometimes, but not always, you’ll be surprised to find that it’s actually cheaper to book airline tickets using this method.
When planning on redeeming airline miles, book your flight as far out as possible. What many travelers don’t realize is that airlines reserve only a set number of seats on their flights for passengers using airline miles. As you can imagine, these limited-quantity seats book up fast!
Sign up for Price Alerts with your favorite airline. This is a great way to be notified of special deals to specific destinations.
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Shop around for the very best deal. Research airline flights on two or more websites before purchasing your tickets. Start with the airline’s website and then continue searching for better deals on fare-comparison sites such as kayak.com, cheapflights.com, cheaptickets.com, skyscanner.com, etc. But always check a variety of sites to compare prices. Here’s another great place where you can find cheap airfare and travel deals: CheapAir.com
When comparing airfare prices, be sure to consider the added cost of check-in luggage. This aspect of travel varies from airline to airline. For example, Southwest allows two free check-in luggage pieces for free. Most other airlines charge about $25 per checked bag, each way. And when switching airlines during a layover, you may have to pay a luggage fee all over again! So even though up front one airline deal may look like it’s a money saver, once you factor in the cost of check-in luggage, it may not be such a great deal after all when compared to an airfare that includes free check-in luggage.
Use social media to find cheap airfare and insider deals. Make a practice of following your favorite airlines on social media. From time to time, they often reward their followers with special discounts and deals.
Cheap Airfare Tips for International Travel: When traveling from the U.S. to Europe you can often save big bucks by flying into a major European airport (London or Paris) then traveling on a separate airline ticket to your final destination via one of Europe’s well-known discount airlines: Ryanair or EasyJet.
More Travel Secrets and Resources
If you liked these insider travel secrets on how to find cheap airfare, chances are you’ll love this travel post too:
How to Pack a Suitcase Like a Pro!
Do you have an awesome travel tip that can help others save money? If you know of another resource for how to find cheap airfare, please share it in the comments below.
20 thoughts on “How to Find Cheap Airfare: Insider Secrets Exposed”
Love the tips. I did not know that the best day to purchase was Tuesday so thanks for that information. I also did not know that I could use social media to find cheaper fares. Thanks!
Do you have any special tips for international airfare? I am looking at planning a trip to Italy next fall, and I have no idea when to start getting serious about booking flights.
Hello Alyssa! Although you can often find the best airfare two to three months before your travel dates, my best advice is to start monitoring airfare prices right now so that next year you’ll be able to recognize an awesome deal when you see it and jump on it. Italy’s high season is generally from late spring through early fall. You can pay substantially less if you travel during their low season months. Another cheap airfare tip: You can often save big bucks by flying into a major European airport (London or Paris), then booking a separate ticket to your final destination via one of Europe’s well-known discount airlines (Ryanair or Easyjet). Mid-week fares will usually be the cheapest. I hope this helps!
Great tips thank you! Was not familiar with all of these.
You’re very welcome, Amanda! Thanks so much for stopping by. :-)
As a constant traveler, I see these as a great roundup of the very best travel tips out there. Bookmarked the post.
Thanks so much Carol! I appreciate your comment. :-)
Most of the times, flight expenses are evident. This post is very informative. Thanks for writing this! :)
I’m so glad you found this information helpful! And thanks so much Aishwarya for stopping by to visit me here at Confetti & Bliss.
Great suggestions! I’ve been booking 2, 1-way tickets lately and it’s been working well for me! Thanks!
Thanks so much Patricia for your comment! Have a great week. :-)
Just discovered your blog… love the layout and content! Definitely bookmarking this post for future travel reference!!
Arielle, you’ve made my day! Thanks so much for bookmarking this post. :-)
Wow, these are great tips!! We live quite a ways from our family, and the easiest way to get together is flying. We don’t get to see each other as much as we would like, because airfare can be so expensive. I will definitely forward this information on to my parents, and hopefully it will help us all find some good deals! Thanks for sharing.
Katie, I’m so glad you love these tips. I hope they can help you and your family secure cheap airfare so you can visit each other more often. :-)
Definitely have to try the booking a flight 3pm on a Tuesday- news to me x
Always great to read these posts! I work for an airline so thankfully I don’t really have to deal with finding cheap airfare but people always ask for my opinion. I love that you touched on the best days to fly and to be flexible with your travel dates because it’s so true!
I love to travel!! I have a big problem packing… I loved all the travel tips!!!
Have a great weekend!
I just had to pin this so I will remember these for the next time I travel! I always go into panic mode, but these tips will definitely help with that. Especially the social media one, since I’m always on Instagram!
Thanks so much Bethany for stopping by. I’m happy that you were able to discover a tip here for finding cheap airfare the next time you travel. And I appreciate that you pinned an image to Pinterest! :-)