The internet is full of advice on ways to actively save money – either in everyday life or when you’re planning to take a trip somewhere far away and exotic.
In a reverse twist from the usual travel advice, this article brings you tips on five things you should avoid – specifically, when buying plane tickets. These tips will help you to save money and make your travel experience more enjoyable too.
FRIDAYS AND SUNDAYS
There are a few important reasons why you should avoid booking air travel for Fridays and Sundays. The big ones are price and airport traffic. Many airlines tend to charge significantly more for these two days because they know there’ll be demand. They enable people to tag on extra days to their trip if they begin or end with a weekend. Fridays and Sundays are also more popular for business travel, as more people will be travelling home after working in another location for the week.
Wednesday is one of the cheapest days to fly, but it’s also worth checking Saturdays (for leisure traveling) and Tuesdays.
NOT USING COUPONS
When shopping online, it’s become the norm for people to search for coupons to see if they can add a discount code to their shopping cart. You can find coupons for all kinds of purchases, including airline tickets, hotel rooms, or even simple things like luggage or holiday clothing. There are loads of sites to choose from, but Mamma.com, Hotels.com and Hotwire discount codes are great options for travel savings. CheapOair.com and Airfare.com have a particular focus on plane tickets.
Cookies are an important consideration, and I’m not talking about the ones we Brits dunk in our tea. Cookies enable the sites you’ve visited to collect and store information about your browsing history. If they know you’ve searched for a journey on more than one occasion, they may predict you’d be willing to pay more money for it and put the price up. Clear your cookies and try the same search on different computers before you buy!
Often, bigger airports and well-known airlines come with a higher price tag. To save money, look at smaller companies and terminals. Choose Beauvais over Paris, Long Beach over LAX and Newark over JFK airport. This might mean you have to travel a bit further from the airport to your destination, but it’s probably worth it for the savings. The experience is often less stressful too.
Compare the cost of direct flights with those that include stop overs, and you’ll almost always find them to be significantly more expensive.
If time is not an issue, look at locations that could break up your journey. You might be able to book the indirect route as two separate flights and add a day or two in between to see a new destination. Just make sure you meet the entry requirements. There’s no point saving money on airfares and then being stung my hefty visa costs!
Finally, if you’ve already bought your ticket and you find you can’t use it, check out Spare Fare. This website connects you with people who are looking to buy discounted tickets. Just check that your airline or travel operator will allow name changes first. Conversely, if you’re still looking for tickets, this might be a good place to pick up a bargain!