There are two types of travelers. One decides to go on a trip, quickly scans for a good deal, and books then and there. The later has a price in mind and searches for at least a few days, if not a few weeks, before securing what they believe is the best price.
The first person in that scenario might score a great deal or they might pay double what someone else does. This occurs for two reasons:
- a)This person didn’t know what the average price would be.
- b)This person didn’t take the time to do the proper research in order to secure the best price.
If you are in a financial situation to pay regardless of the price, that is excellent. However, the majority of Americans could use the additional savings and should take the time to search for the best deal for their next flight to Palm Beach or wherever their travels may take them.
For this reason, we’ve compiled some of the top tips to ensure you find the best deals on your next domestic flight.
First, sign up for airfarewatchdog email notifications. So many of us travel to the same place over and over again. Usually to visit family. Wouldn’t it be ideal to know exactly when a great deal to your top destination hits? You can use this site to request immediate notifications as soon as they launch. If you are a more spur of the moment kind of person, request the best deals leaving from your home airport and book your next getaway based on an amazing flight price.
It’s been asked for years, “Is there a best day to buy a plane ticket?” The information has been conflicting, but most recent results point to yes. If you are planning your next flight to The Palm Beaches, you will likely want to book it on Sunday. That’s right, folks. Tuesday may have been the best back in the day, but in 2018, you will almost surely find the lowest plane ticket on a Sunday.
Now you know Sunday is the best day to buy a ticket, how far out should you buy it? Six weeks before your flight or maybe six months in advance? While you may still find a good deal if you wait, the data still points to purchasing your ticket as soon as possible. This is particularly true if you have plans to travel during the high season.
Another common questions is: What if I find a great deal on Expedia or another low-cost airline ticket website? Should I book it?
There are many great, reliable resources to find affordable flights, which now even include Google. However, before you book, search directly through the airline.
For example, imagine you find a deal from JFK to PBI through Delta and notice it’s one of the lowest costs you have ever paid. Your instinct is to lock in the rate, but go directly to the Delta website first. Search the exact parameters (date, time, airports) and see if you can find the same deal. If the same low-cost rate is found directly through the airline, purchase it there.
While the initial cost of the ticket is the same, this extra step could make a difference. If you miss your flight or need to change the reservation for any reason, it will be much easier and cheaper to do so through the actual airline.
“Is it more expensive to travel on certain days or is it my imagination?” This is another common question. Airlines know most people work Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm. This means that many Americans leave for vacation on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays in order to take the least amount of time off work.
If you have the flexibility, try to take advantage of the least traveled days with the best deals around and book a ticket leaving and/or returning on a Tuesday or Wednesday.
Other ways to save
Mobile apps are becoming more common for everything from fitness to finance to travel. It is really no surprise that a top way to save money when buying an airline ticket is through the app Hopper. According to a recent CNBC article, a Hopper representative said that users “tend to save 10 to 15 percent on your ticket.”
Additionally, if you have a destination in mind, but are not tied down to a date, you will save money by traveling during the low season. North of the equator, the high season is in the summer from about May to September. Similarly, south of the equator is also most popular in the summer; our winter. Consider traveling during the off-season to save money. For example, Europe in October will be cooler, but the tourist destinations will be less crowded and your airline ticket will be lower than a few months prior.
Even if you can’t secure the cheapest ticket, there are still ways to lower your overall cost of travel. For example:
- Bring an empty water bottle that you can fill up past security.
- Luxuries are scarce on flights. If you are on an overnight flight, bring your own pillow and blanket to ensure a comfortable ride.
- Bring your own book and ear buds.