The purpose of Vital Ventures is to make traveling easier and more organized for you, but we know that our travel itinerary planner isn’t the only thing needed to make traveling easier. We believe that using our online travel planner is an essential step to planning your trip but we wanted to share how we do another important step in the travel planning process. Here we have created a guide to find the best flight possible!
There are many strategies to booking flights and finding cheap airfare. Companies have even been created to solve this problem as a whole. But in reality it can be difficult to hone in on one specific strategy that works in an ever-changing playing field of online booking agents, airlines and consumers. You can research this topic and find hundreds of articles claiming they know the best time to book, from where, or have insider information blah, blah, blah. Trust us we’ve gone through theses articles and done our own research to give you a simple guide to booking a flight. So instead of giving you the best,
exact, and only formula for finding the best prices we are going to give you a few different strategies and tips to consider when booking your next flight.
Airline pricing is not for the weak hearted. It’s so complicated in fact that once you think you’ve discovered the best flight the price to hike or fall dismissing your formula in an instant!
There are so many factors that go into airfare pricing so before we begin, here are a few factors to consider before buying a flight. All of these factors can either save or cost you money.
Let me start by saying that there is no right or perfect time to buy the cheapest fare. There are just too many factors that play into airfare pricing that no average days out will apply to every flight. With that being said, these are all estimated averages and when pertaining to individual destinations, large fluctuations can occur.
For domestic flights, the best time to buy a flight is between 49 and 70 days out.
Many International flights from the United States require booking further in advance due to a high demand for seats and less supply of flights.
So with all of this you can start to see that there is no best formula or tactic, except for one. Sign up for alerts (tip #2). After looking around for a little bit you’ll know a good deal when you see one so sign up for a few alerts (websites below) and stay informed!
*One again these are all general averages that have been compiled by Cheap Air, Kayak, and our own research*
1. First and foremost search for flights in incognito mode! This cannot be stressed enough! It’s the 21st century and technology is watching your every move! If you think that your online activity isn’t tracked and utilized by airline companies you are highly mistaken! If you don’t protect your search history, airline companies will leverage your cookies (not the yummy ones) and increase the price of flights as you continue to search for them. This tactic is used to scare you into buying the flight before the price goes up.
2. Sign Up for Alerts: Most of the websites we recommend offer alerts via text or email so use them, all of them. The more information you have the better chance you’ll have of snagging that low rate.
3. Budget Airlines: They come with compromises but also cheaper tickets, so once again if your serious about saving some money, be open to them, especially for shorter flights.
4. Have Flexible Travel Dates: If you look at some of the calendars on the websites we recommend you will see that delaying or moving you flight up a few days can save you big bucks.
5. Its better to buy too early than too late. Flights rarely get cheaper as you get closer to your departure date.
6. If you’re a true adventurer then book an extended layover. Airwander.com is one of our favorite website to add a random destination on a vacation.
7. Booking two one ways can be cheaper so always be sure to look into those options.
8. More and more airline websites are starting price guarantees so they will have a lower price than the online travel agents such as: Expedia.com, Booking.com, etc.
9. Look up historical prices for flight prices on faredetective.com to gage what a reasonable price would be versus a not so reasonable one.
Be on the lookout for our next blog in this series where we provide our favorite websites and apps to use when searching for that cheap fare!
All information has been compiled with the help of CheapAir, Hopper, Kayak, and our personal travel research and experiences.