As airlines increase the cost of airline tickets, saving money on a ticket may seem like a mere wish. Sometimes I used to wonder how some people managed to book a ticket for almost half the price I bought mine. Personally, I travel a lot and I have visited some of the most amazing places in the world. However, throughout my visits, I tend to get my tickets expensively compared to some of my friends whom we have traveled with in the past. This is something I had been thinking about until I recently discovered that there are actually tips for saving on your airline ticket. You only need to put a little more effort and you will be surprised how much you can save for your ticket. Below are some of the tips and tricks on how to save for your plane ticket.
1. Pick your traveling days wisely
The price of flying differs depending on the time, day and month of travel. There are websites that give you the opportunity to compare fight prices across a whole month. This means that you are able to see the days flights are cheap hence saving a lot on your ticket. A survey by a travel search company called Skyscanner found out that 39% of travelers confessed that they prefer buying their tickets as far as six weeks before the actual traveling day. The rest admitted that they book their tickets even months to years before that day.
A good example is during thanksgiving. Most people lack flexibility during this time. They wait until at least 10 days before their traveling time when they start buying their tickets. However, at this time, the prices will have started to spike up. This is in spite of the fact that the lowest ticket prices were available 60 to 70 days before the actual day. In such a case, people end up spending more on their tickets yet they could possibly have spent much less, therefore, my advice is start checking flights as soon as you know that you will be traveling. Most importantly, keep checking the flights until when there is a favorable price for the ticket. When that price is available, ensure you book it then since you are not sure when that price will be available next.
2. Sign up for airfare alerts and track routes
In order to be able to keep an eye on fare trends, you can sign up for Fare Tracker Alerts. With this, you will be notified fast when there is a sale alert and when there is the only limited number of seats. Acting quickly when there is a sale alert can save you a lot of money and can give you the opportunity to visit some of the most amazing places in the world and at the lowest price.
3. Take note of seasonality and holidays
The most important factor that influences the price of a particular flight is how much the flight is full. This makes sense considering traveling during holidays like during Christmas thanksgiving or spring break is more expensive than at normal times. The same applies to some destinations especially international ones which are very seasonal in nature. It is, therefore, imperative that you research on the low and the high seasons for places you want to visit. A good example is if you are planning to travel to Europe, you can find some interesting deals during February and March which is mostly low season. However, if you choose to travel during summer, you will pay almost double the price. If you are planning to travel to popular places at popular times, you should consider booking earlier since discount seats are likely to sell out quickly and under most circumstances, they are few.
4. Break up groups or families into separate purchases
Most people think that the more people they travel, the better the rate but that is not true when it comes to airlines. Here group discounts are few and far between. Most airlines limit the number of seats per flight selling at their lowest rate. A good example is an airline which has 2 seats remaining and they are selling them at $100 and a number of other seats are available at $150. If you choose to do a search for a group of 4 the price that will come back will be $150. However, if you search for 2 seats at a time, you can buy 2 for $100 and only have to pay the extra $50 for the last two.
5. Prepare for extra bag fees
Different airlines have different policies regarding baggage. Most charge for the checked bags while some even charge for carry-on baggage. You should take that into consideration while you are planning to buy your ticket. Some airlines require you to pay for your bags before your departure day by going to the airline website. If you wait until you get to their airport, you will be charged a premium for that.
6. Fly indirect
If money is the issue and not time, you can consider booking an indirect flight instead of a direct one. You can search for indirect routes which are usually far cheaper than the direct routes.
7. Mix and match airlines to get the cheapest flights
Different websites have search tools that allow you to mix and match your airlines to find the cheapest price and the best time to book them. You can save a lot of money by flying out and back with different airlines or from different airports. Mix and match option come in handy when:
· The best possible fare for a route requires you to travel on one airline coming in and on another airline going out and
· When the airline with the most convenient outbound flight does not have a convenient return flight or vice versa.
8. Consider getting an air pass
In order to promote tourism in their countries, many countries have gone out of their way to offer air passes at the reduced rate for tourists. Therefore, if you are planning an extensive travel in one region or a country, an air pass can come in handy as far as saving on cost is concerned.
With these 8 tips and tricks, you can be guaranteed this is the last time you are buying an airline ticket expensively. There are a few other tips that are not included here but these are the major ones. Ensure you follow some of these tips and you will be surprised how much you can actually save on your ticket.
Evans Lily is the founder of SkyWeFly, where she and her associates blog about photographs, stories and travel tips that will help you make a great journey. She hopes to bring her passion to more people via SkyWeFly.