Finding cheap flights is a breeze with our ultimate guide to locating lower cost airfare. Traveling anywhere in the world costs more and more money. These days nothing is cheap, especially when it comes to finding low cost air tickets and bagging deals on cheap flights. Hence we have put together this easy to use guide to finding the cheapest flights possible.[toc]
When embarking on a trip how to find a cheap flight is the cost saving question that most air travelers must face in order to start a trip or vacation. This early part of planning a trip is where cost savings can be made if the right techniques for securing cheap flights are properly adhered to. d.
Whether you’re running away by planning a solo escapist backpacking trip across different cities in Europe or planning to take the entire family including grandma and grandpa for a week’s luxury stay in Hawaii, securing cheap airfare is a burden.
One major factor that needs to be considered and carefully planned out is the booking of the flight tickets. Sometimes when travel planning this should be done even months in advance. If you are a student you can take advantage of student flight discounts but not everybody is so lucky.
Savvy air travelers soon realize that there are some effective low airfare techniques that can be used to hunt down much cheaper flights and secure low cost airline tickets to your holiday destination.
Why is it Important to Find a Cheap Flight?
A holiday costs a lot of money, whether you’re traveling as a couple or as an entire family. Besides hotel bookings, a holiday incurs other expenditure such as unpaid leave from employment (if needed), shopping money, food and beverage expenses, travel insurance, transportation costs within the city you’re visiting, sightseeing tours and reservation costs, and so on. Reducing the cost of flying eases the financial burden resulting in a less expensive vacation or trip.
On top of all these travel expenses, paying an exorbitant amount for airfare would really cut into your savings account and might even put a damper on the holiday mood. This is why it is important to at least save your money where it’s possible and find a cheap flight.
These days, with the best of travel agents and a number airfare booking websites, it is easy to find cheap and affordable airfare with less expensive budget airlines. Of course, it would require you to probably fly economy class instead of business or first class but the money you could save is worth the smaller seats and mediocre food. Here are a few easy tips and ideas on how you can find cheap flights using budget flight operators..
Use Travel Search Engines and Travel Deals Web Sites
Mobile apps and websites – With practically everything done online nowadays, with the dawn of the internet and modern technology, booking a cheap flight is just a click away. Web sites such as Skyscanner and Skiplagged are great tools or search engines for finding the cheapest and best airfare to and from any country in the world.
These travel search engines also come in the form of apps and focussed web sites that can be downloaded on your mobile phones or smartphones, which makes it that much faster and convenient for you. Let’s go a little more into details with these websites/apps –
Finding Cheap Flights With Skyscanner Flight Search Engine
Skyscanner is an internet cheap flights search engine that searches for hundreds and millions of different possible routes on a number of different airlines. Skyscanner also searches for cheap airfare through a number of different travel agents according to what suits your travel budget.
Using Skyscanner.net to Source Cheap Flight Tickets
The topmost portion of the web page allows you to select between flights, hotels, car hire, and buses. Once you’ve selected the ‘flights’ option, the drop down box asks for you to feed in information like the ‘to and from’ destination, date of departure and return, cabin class and the number of travelers. Once you’ve correctly filled in this information, all you need to do is click on the ‘search flights’ option.
There are also ‘return’, ‘one-way’ and ‘multi-city’ options or checkboxes on top and a ‘direct flights’ only option/checkbox below in case you don’t want to take connecting flights and save yourself the hassle of long airport layoff waits.
There is also a handy ‘map’ option at the top right hand side corner of the ‘flight’ drop-down box in order for you to view your different route options easily and conveniently and figure out your flight routes faster and save time.
Identifying Cheaper Airline Tickets at a Glance
Once you’ve thoroughly browsed through all the different options that Skyscanner lays out for you and made your selection of which flight you would like to opt for, Skyscanner immediately directs you to the particular airline link or the travel agent, without any extra or hidden charges or fees. So you are practically getting to avail free online travel agent or airfare booking services in a safe and secure manner.
Comparing the Cost of Flights
Skyscanner also helps you compare the cost of different airlines and travel agents so that you can avail the best deals. Not only does it help you find the cheapest flights, but also helps you find reasonable hotel rates and good car hire deals. Some of the many airlines that Skyscanner features are – Jet Airways, Indigo, Air India. Some of the online travel agents include – makemytrip.com, clear trip, musafir.com, goibibo.com, yatra.com, and so on. So you get to view, compare and choose the cheapest and best airlines as well as travel agents, both using the same website.
Finding Popular Low Cost Flight Destinations With Skyscanner
For example traveling to India is a current rage among many people including celebrities. They travel to experience the culture, cuisine and so on. On the right hand side of the Skyscanner webpage is an option that allows you to choose any destination to fly out to from India.
Skyscanner shows you hundreds of different airline options, thousands of routes and with the best possible prices, try using their flights search engine. Some of the countries include Nepal, Bangladesh, Singapore, Indonesia, Sri Lanka and many more. You can apply this same technique to other countries and destinations.
Finding Cheap Airfare on the Go
All this can be done in the comfort of your own home just with the click of a button on your laptop, desktop or tablet. Skyscanner also offers its valuable services in the form of mobile phone applications which can be downloaded on your iPhones or android smartphones. All you need is a good Wi-Fi or internet connection and you can start planning your holiday and looking for cheap flights, no matter where you are on your mobile phone. Skyscanner also has a nifty option in its mobile app where the user can click on the banner called ‘win flight’ and stand a chance to win a free flight worth Rs. 23,000 every week.
Skyscanner has been rated as one of the best flight search engines in the world and has been highly recommended by The Independent, BBC Radio 1, Which? Travel, The Guardian, and other news and travel channels and websites.
Skyscanner flight search can also be accessed through Facebook and has its very own Facebook page, on which you can browse for regular updates on affordable airfare, hotel deals, coupons and giveaways. Skyscanner always aims at keeping its customers well informed at all times so that they never miss out on the best and cheapest airfare deals, offers and discounts.
Apart from this, always remember that it helps to book your flights as much in advance as possible, even six to eight months in advance. Booking your flights earlier can help you get much cheaper rates and booking a round trip rather than one way also helps you save on flight cost.
Finding Cheap Flights With Skiplagged
Skiplagged is another great website for finding cheap flights. It is basically a travel website that helps customers find the cheapest routes and airfare to fly themselves and the entire family to their dream destinations anywhere in the world. Skiplagged helps its customers find airfare that cannot be found anywhere else in the world and helps them save up to 80%.
Skiplagged can also be downloaded onto mobile phones or smartphones and used in the form of apps. You can download from the App Store if you’re using an iPhone or from the Google Play Store if you’re using a smartphone with an Android software. Skiplagged is also popular on Facebook and Twitter and constantly keeps its customers and users updated on the latest and best deals and offers on cheap airfare.
Right on top of the main webpage is a ‘Sign In’ section where the customer or user can log in using their username and password or create one if they haven’t already done it. Next to that is the ‘to and from’ destination tab where the user can enter the particular destinations where he or she wishes to travel to and from, including the date tab. Once all this information is filled in, all you need to do is click on the ‘search’ button and you’re good to go.
On the main webpage, there is an ‘Example’ section that features some of the most recently searched for information that was found by users in the last 24 hours. This information includes exciting and attractive deals to travel from one country to another country on a particular date and the rate of discount on airfare offered.
For example flying from Honolulu to Denver on March 11 at 11% less or Washington to Frankfurt on August 4 at 12% less. This is a great way for customers to keep other customers updated and informed on the most attractive flight deals that could fit into their travel budget. Obviously these deals were in play at the time of writing but this is indicative of how Skiplagged works.
Comparing Flight Prices
The next section on Skiplagged is the ‘Flight Price Comparison’ section that allows users to compare standard airline ticket rates, hidden city fares, arbitrary round-trips and also compare Skiplagged with other online travel agencies such as Google Flights and Expedia.
One of the best features on the Skiplagged web page is the ‘Press’ section. Almost all the big news channels, newspapers and media houses have praised Skiplagged including CNN, Business Insider, The Daily Dot, The Huffington Post, The New Yorker, and even Forbes. Once you click on any one of the different press tabs, it takes you to a YouTube video or an article that features and explains Skiplagged and its various advantages.
At the bottom of the page is the ‘Feedback’ section that allows users to share their thoughts, views and opinions on using Skiplagged and if any modifications or improvements can be made.
From the above, it is quite evident that Skyscanner and Skiplagged are the best websites available for finding cheap flights online. Another source of low cost airfare worthy of using is Flightfox. This cheap flights provider is actually a marketplace of flight experts who will do their level best to find the lowest cost airline tickets to your chosen destination.
Other Cheap Flight Techniques
Apart from the above two websites – here are a few other tips that you could try out to help you find the cheapest flights.
Book Flight Tickets in Advance
- Book in advance and be flexible with dates – As mentioned earlier, the longer you wait to book your air tickets, the higher the cost. Try to plan your holiday, at least, a couple of months in advance and start looking for airfare, at least, four months prior to your trip. Also, try not to avoid certain days of the week as airfare is always priced higher on the weekends.
Avoid months of the year in which the holidays fall, like December and January when. Even the time of the day you book your flight matters; flights early in the morning or late in the night are cheaper than others. If you are flexible with dates, you can save up to hundreds of dollars this way. If you are student looking for student flight discounts then combine these techniques for optimal savings.
Also look at pricing trends for flight tickets. Just as with hotel rooms, do certain flight providers seem to drop their fares at particular points in the week. It is worth keeping a close eye on flight price trends and movement.
Take Flexible Routes
- Be open to different destinations – In order to reach your dream destination, you might have to take two or three flights to get there, rather than one direct flight. Just look at what this traveler from England did in order to fly from Sheffield to Essex. Now this is a domestic UK flight but by routing via Berlin he actually saved money. Extreme perhaps but evidence that booking connecting flights, as opposed to a direct flight, works out much cheaper. Although you might have to deal with long layover hours at the airport.
Most of the online travel agent websites like Kayak and Google Flights offer users the option of finding out the cheapest possible routes available to reach a particular place. Another downside to this, other than long hours of waiting at the airport for your connecting flight, is one or two days of extra travel, which means extra jet lag too.
Use Budget Airlines
- Choose budget airlines – There is a certain class of airlines that allow you to fly anywhere in the world and for amazingly cheap fares. For example, Norwegian Airlines allows passengers to fly to and from Europe to Bangkok for around 250 dollars each way. WOW air is offering very cheap flights to London and Iceland from the United States.
In Asia and Australasia, operator Air Asia X offers very affordable deals around Australia and Asia for a very reasonable price of $100 dollars each way. Middle Eastern and Indian airlines are always offering very cheap flight deals and rates throughout their continents as well as Africa.
In Asia, Air Asia is one budget airline that allows you to fly anywhere at very cheap rates. You can find airfare as cheap as 30 dollars from Bangkok to Kuala Lumpur and $110 dollars from Southeast Asia to Australia each way. Sometimes these low-budget airlines charge no airfare and make you pay just the taxes.
Take Advantage of Student Flight Discounts
Student life can make you eligible for lots of special travel deals and student flight discounts. If you are a student, there are many, many flight discounts available to you. Take a close look at STA Travel for student flight tickets. You can find flexible student tickets on their website for example London to Barcelona just a few hundred USD. In the UK try the NUS web site.
There are many student travel discount codes out there on NUS sites and web forums and on the big travel sites themselves. Travel agents will also have student only coupons and flight offers. Just drop into a branch and ask to see their current student flight discounts. Well worth a punt!
Join a Travel Site
Join a travel site mailing list. Not a list that spams users to death but one that is likely to send out ‘one of a kind’ useful trip offers. Meaning subscribe to the newsletters of big travel review sites and independent explorer style travel sites and blogs. The latter are not as stuffy corporate. This kind of travel site is far more likely to offer bespoke discount codes and loyalty offers for their readers.
Use Air Miles and Join a Frequent Flyer Rewards Programme
Airline rewards programs are similar to the points schemes that hotels operate. Airline rewards programs are great way to gain free flights, free flight upgrades, privileges and complimentary companion tickets. These kind of airline rewards programmes basically compensate passengers for racking up lots of air miles. Each time you fly more air miles are accrued to the frequent flyer program. However which is the best best frequent flyer program? Which are the airline rewards and frequent flyer schemes that will make an appreciable difference when cashing in precious air miles.
Choosing the Best Frequent Flyer Programme
No matter how frequently you fly, you should be enrolled for the airline’s frequent flyer rewards programme. Most of the US located airlines are involved in frequent flyer reward schemes and you can earn air miles on their partner flights. For example, if a passenger flies with British Airways, they can earn air miles with partner airlines of BA also. Likewise, if they fly Air France, it’s credited to a Delta rewards account. This way by using a frequent flyer rewards programme travelers are always earning air miles when they fly.
However, if you aren’t from the United States, simply use an airline from your home country in Europe or elsewhere that is involved in one of these air miles alliances. It is easy to see the value in using an airline rewards programme. Next time you plan a trip be sure to make the air miles count. Racking up frequent flyer flight miles will allow access to sweet travel deals and frequent flyer rewards programme privileges.
Perhaps you are thinking that finding cheap flights seems like a lot of work? Well it can be but a lot depends on how much money you wish to save. If saving money on flights and all those air miles is more important than inconvenience then it is well worth investing time wisely.
Look at the budget airlines and flight deal web sites. Use the travel search engines, join a travel site or two and study the travel planning techniques suggested in this feature article. You should find that cheap flights are actually more than within reach and the cost of your trip and airfare reduced accordingly.