There’s just something about summer and traveling that go together. Whether it’s because more people are off during the summer or because the weather is more ideal, people tend to vacation much more frequently during the summer months. You can bet that the airline companies know this as well and often bump their ticket prices up accordingly.
Often we take vacations where driving is possible and usually cheaper, but sometimes you have to fly because of distance, time or the inability to drive where you’re going. Here’s 4 little tips that can help ensure you get the cheapest airline ticket wherever you’re traveling this summer.
1. Check airline prices before booking your accommodations
Once you have a set-in-stone hotel reservation, your flight plans will be strict and won’t allow much room for flexibility. Hold off on booking your accommodations and make sure that you check out flights, too. If you find a hotel offering a special discount for a certain week, look up flights before you book to make sure that they aren’t more expensive than any other period. If the flights are more, you might not be saving money in the long run.
2. Be flexible with your travel dates/times
Weekend days (like Friday, Saturday and Sunday) tend to make ticket prices jump because more people travel on those days, so if you are able to bump your days a little bit, you may save a nice chunk of change. Again, this is another reason not to book your accommodations without checking flight prices because it may be cheaper to arrive on a different day than you originally booked. Also, be willing to travel at different times of the day. Most people like to leave early in the morning, but sometimes midday flights are cheaper because they are harder to fill. Just do a thorough check to ensure you’re not missing out on a price cut.
3. Use travel websites to price check
This one is HUGE. Use the internet… it can definitely help. My husband and I flew to Jamaica last year and we saved over $500 by price checking between tons of travel websites (like Expedia, Travelocity or Hotwire). Don’t be fooled by the first price you see, even if it’s advertised as the lowest airfare. I was shocked to see the difference in price of the exact same flights as I went from website to website. Check, check and recheck behind yourself. It’s worth the time.
4. Look at booking your to/return flights separately
This is another thing that really paid off for us when we were planning our trip. Initially we searched for our leaving/returning flights together, but we soon found out that we could save several hundred dollars by booking them separately. We ended up booking the different flights through different websites. So as you’re searching for flights, check and see if it’s cheaper to book them together or separately.
Those are just a few of the tips that we have followed as we look at flights for vacations. Remember that flight prices are different according to time of travel and location, so all of these tips may not work for all instances. However, the biggest tip is just to do your homework and spend time searching for flights. Don’t go with the first price you find. Start looking for tickets early on and give yourself plenty of time to search.
Do you have a tip for flying cheap? Please share with us in the comments below!