One of the best ways to save money on a flight is to plan ahead. But sometimes, no matter how ahead you plan that the prices are too expensive and out of the budget. Whether you’re traveling for a family vacation, a business trip, or a spontaneous escape. Here are some frugal ways to save on traveling by air.
Shop online. Many airlines offer their “lowest available fares” to customers who purchase tickets on the Web. Sign up for last-minute specials and e-mail alerts from airlines. Start by searching the airlines “sale” fares, which are hard to beat.
Sign up for free alerts. Most online booking site offers airfare alerts that ping you when fare prices fall. It’s a good idea to follow airlines on their social network sites. There are tons of iPhone, Android, and computer apps that let you set alerts for flights that you want. These apps will tell you when prices drop in and out of your budget as well as when new flights during the times you want have been added.
Fly during off-peak months and days of the week. Travel costs are generally lower during months and times of the year when children are in school. Families can cut airfare costs by traveling off-peak days such as Tuesday through Thursday, and by buying your tickets at least two weeks in advance. The best time of day to fly is between 5 am and 7 am, or after 8 pm.
Book at the right time. The sweet spot for the best pricing on airfares is somewhere around 45 to 90 days before departure. Booking too early or too late can lock you into an unfavorably high price for your airfare.
Departure Location. The larger the departure city the better your chance of scoring a low fare. Airline travel companies expect competition from these points and price their rates accordingly. So try to leave from a major city such as Atlanta, New York City, South Africa, Bogota, Toronto or Vancouver. If you live within a reasonable distance from a major city, then you can sometimes be flying out of these locations will be worth the savings.
Use a credit card to your advantage. Using a credit card in a smart way can score you free flights or reduced airfare when you fly. If you’re in the market for a new credit card, consider applying for one through an airline. When you use your card, it results in points toward free and discounted flights.
Groupon. Groupon Getaways offers over 1,000 travel deals for hotels, excursions, cruises and group trips from domestic to abroad. You can search by destination, interests, and dates in order to find your dream vacation. They’re constantly featuring new travel destinations and deals that fall under two types of Getaways: Flash Deals and Market Picks.