Have you been wanting to take a trip but your bank account won’t let you? If so, join the club. Between limited days off and limited funds I am someone who will spend hours, sometimes days searching for the perfect flight deal. So if you want to learn how to make a dream trip a reality, keep reading!
The first, and most of the time the most expensive step to any trip is getting there. This article will share with you a few tips and tricks to finding that perfect (cheap) flight.
One of the best site for finding flights…
It’s called Skyscanner and it has helped me reach some of my dream destinations for prices that didn’t (completely) break the bank; $500RT for a flight to China, $300RT for a flight to Paris and $650RT for a flight to Thailand…. just to name a few. Below are some tips on using Skyscanner to find the ultimate flight deal!
1. I know not everyone in the world lives close to a major international airport, lucky enough for me I’m within an hour to two-hour drive from 3 major airports (JFK, EWR, LGA). If you’re within a few hours via train or car ride it’s best to use a bigger airport to fly out of, as smaller airports tend to be more expensive. Even with the cost of transportation to the airport you may find yourself saving a couple hundred dollars (that’s the difference between a 30 bed and 6 bed hostel room during your stay + some spending money)!
2. If your dates are flexible Skyscanner gives you the option to search the entire month to see the cheapest days to travel.
They also have an option for the cheapest month which will automatically take you to the month that’s cheapest to fly to your particular destination.
3. If you’ve caught the travel bug and just need to get away but are unsure of where you want to go, another amazing option on Skyscanner (and probably my favorite) is the ability to search “everywhere” for a particular set of dates. This works well if you have a holiday coming up and want to escape for a few days. Just put in your dates and your home airport and search “everywhere.” This will bring up the destinations you can fly to on those dates in order from least to most expensive.
You never know, you might surprise yourself and end up somewhere you never thought you’d go!
**If the price isn’t right be sure to put an alert on the particular flight you’re looking at, they will notify you of any change in price. Prices may decrease over time, but be careful as sometime they often go in the opposite direction.
Create your own layover…
This can be a little tricky and often risky, but if you’re willing to take the risk it can save you hundreds to thousands of dollars. This works particularly well in Europe where you can easily connect countries via train, bus or flight if necessary.
If the destination you’re trying to reach is located in a smaller town or you’ve searched and it is just expensive to fly into, search for a flight to some of the surrounding cities and/or countries.
(Example) My boyfriend and I are traveling to Italy in a few weeks and wanted to start our trip in Rome. My search for a flight resulted in some not so pretty numbers… $950 for a flight to Rome (with 1 stop) may not seem like a lot to some of you, but I knew I could do better. I looked up flights to some of the other major cities in Italy and I ended up booking us two direct flights from NY to Milan for $858… Two for (less than) the price of one!! I told you I could do better… Don’t believe me? See the proof below.
Next step would be booking the train, plane or bus ticket to your final destination. Here is where “making your own layover” comes in handy. I know some of you HATE layovers, but if it will save you hundreds to thousands of dollars I don’t know why you would.
(Example continued) From Milan we booked a flight to Rome leaving 2 hours after we land. The flights cost $45 per person, bringing our new total to just $948!! At the end of our trip we will be flying from Naples back to Milan for our flight home (total cost $53 per person).
Total cost of flights before: $1,900
Total cost of flights after: $1,054
Savings: $846!!!!! (this could be used for hotels and/or spending money)
Pay in a foreign currency…
This one may not work every time, but to save some money it’s worth a try. Some websites like Norwegian will allow you to change the country in which you are in, which will change the currency you will be paying with.
To test this theory when I first searched for my flight to Oslo I selected the United States as my “home country” which is where I am actually from. The flight below is in USD and totals $759.60 for two roundtrip tickets out of New York.
When I searched the flights for the second time I selected Norway as my “home country” changing the currency to the Norwegian Krone. The website did change to Norwegian, but was still easy to navigate as it is the same as it was in English. The total for this flight was 5 196 NOK or 614.84 USD, over $100 cheaper than the first flight I searched!
Like I said this trick may not work every time, but to save money it’s totally worth a try!
Searching for the perfect and cheapest flight may take some time and effort, but I promise you it’s totally worth it!!!
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