Tips for Finding Cheap AirfareApril 30, 2014
Summer is a great time for travel. Whether you are taking a flight for a family vacation, to a family reunion or just want a terrific adventure, you can find cheap airline tickets if you do a little bit of homework and try a few different approaches.
Be Flexible About Your Destination
While you may have your heart set on a specific destination, if you are willing and able to be flexible, you can reduce your airline costs substantially. Many travel sites will list prices for your specific destination, but will also include alternate airport destinations relatively close. For example, if you are traveling to Los Angeles, there will also be prices listed for Orange County and Ontario airports, which are within easy driving distance of Los Angeles.
It can be really easy to purchase your tickets when you have some free time to surf the internet to find a good price. However, the best time to purchase airline tickets is on Tuesday at 3:00 pm Eastern Time, according to Farecompare.com. This is especially true if you are planning on traveling within the United States, since this is when airlines typically release their best priced tickets for the week.
Another tip is to purchase your airline tickets six weeks in advance. Often, the closer you get to your travel date, the higher the price will be. This can be especially true during the summer, when airlines are counting on vacation travel. Six weeks is the optimal time when airlines have the best prices for popular destinations, such as Orlando, Hawaii and other popular vacation locations.
If you are traveling with your family, it can seem easier to pack up and get to the airport on the weekend. However, the highest priced airline tickets are for weekend travel. If you are willing to travel on a Wednesday, airline tickets can be substantially less expensive. For a family of four, this can turn into hundreds of dollars in savings for your vacation.
Be Willing to Take Connecting Flights
Most of us want a direct flight to our destination. It is easier and a lot less hassle. However, it is also one of the most expensive types of airline tickets. If you have the flexibility of taking longer to travel, consider booking a flight that has at least two or more connecting flights. The airline will take care of getting your checked luggage on the right plane if you are using the same airline for your entire trip. If you choose to go this route, make sure that there is enough time between connections for you to get to the gate for your next flight. This can be especially important for connections in larger airports, such as Chicago O’Hare or Dallas-Ft Worth.
Be Flexible About Your Departure Time
For the best prices on airline tickets, if you are willing to take either an early flight or a red eye, you can snap up a deal. These flights have the fewest passengers because they are not especially convenient. As a result, airlines cut rates to attract bargain hunters and fill seats. The next best times to travel for good ticket prices are right around dinner and lunch time.
However, be careful about booking tickets to leave first thing Monday morning or early evening on Friday, if you are traveling on routes commonly used by weekly commuters. For example, Los Angeles to San Francisco/San Jose/Sacramento flights are frequently filled with commuters on Mondays and Fridays and prices during heavy commuter times are costly.
Book Last Minute
If your destination is not a really popular place, then you may score better rates on airline prices if you are willing to gamble a little bit. Since airlines do not make money on flights with empty seats, you can score really good prices if you wait until a few days before you leave to buy your tickets. This can be a really fun strategy if you decide at the last minute that a weekend adventure is just what you need to clear away the debris of a stressful week.
Use the Internet and Social Media
One of the simplest ways to find cheap airline ticket prices is to use web sites dedicated to airline prices. Many of these sites allow you to compare prices and also provide information on connecting flights and alternative airport destinations. Additionally, you may be able to book your entire trip on one of these sites, including your hotel and car rental.
Before booking a ticket, go to the website of the airline you are considering. You may be able to find even better prices when you book directly with an airline. This may not be the case if you call them on the telephone, however.
There are also several web sites that are dedicated to watching fares for you. A number allow you to sign up before you purchase your tickets and send you alerts for the best prices. Other sites will refund the difference if you book a flight through them and the price is lowered before your trip.
Airlines have also been using Facebook and Twitter lately to release ticket price sale information. Often, these are short term sale prices, so if you see something you think is a deal, go for it because it may not last very long.
No matter where your vacation and summer travel destination is, your travel adventure should be a fun experience. Even if you rarely suffer from motion or air sickness, pack a bottle of Motioneaze in your carry on bag or purse. This all natural product eases uncomfortable symptoms of motion sickness and vertigo with just a drop behind each ear. Even if you forget to put it on before getting on the plane, dab it behind your ears and you will soon be feeling better.
Image Courtesy: www.freedigitalimages.net and bplanet. think4photop
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