Travel is priceless. Airfare is not.
Travel experiences are priceless, but unfortunately, airline tickets still cost money. Don’t let the cost of airfare dim your wanderlust. Here are some money-saving tips that will help your travel dreams take off.
Keep it secret. Browse incognito
Have you ever found a great deal on airline tickets, only to have the price jump the next time you search for them? This happens because the airlines pay attention to your online searches and adjust the prices accordingly. If they see you looking at a Paris vacation, the cost of tickets to Paris will increase. To avoid this, always search for flights in an incognito browser. Websites can track your online activity and monitor your browsing history. By using a hidden or incognito window, your movements will be private. The airlines won’t know that you’re watching the cost on flights to Europe, so they won’t increase the prices and you’ll find cheaper tickets.
Monitor prices. Don’t send email alerts to your junk inbox
Even when using a hidden browser window, airfare prices change significantly and frequently. Before you book your trip, monitor prices and sign up for email alerts. Websites like Skyscanner, Airfare Watchdog, and Fare Compare will keep you updated on low prices. For the best deal, experts suggest booking your flight six to eight weeks ahead of time. This is good general advice, but it doesn’t factor in promotions, sales and other price discounts that may become available. Email alerts help you stay on top of those deals. The middle of the week is the cheapest time to both purchase tickets and to travel. Buying your tickets on a Tuesday or Wednesday will usually mean the cost is lower. Booking flights on Tuesdays and Wednesdays can also be a way to save money.
Treat yourself. Sign up for rewards programs
For frequent fliers and occasional travelers alike, credit card rewards programs help save you money. Whether you sign up for a rewards program with a particular airline or you earn travel rewards from a general credit card program, these points can be used towards seat upgrades, cheaper fares, and other perks.
Check the calendar. Book vacations during off-season
Traveling during the off-season is another way to save money on flights, hotels, and attractions. You’ll be able to explore an area without crowds of tourists and long lines. Many destinations offer several activities year-round. Museums, theater productions, sporting events, and restaurants can be enjoyed indoors regardless of the weather. Seasonal tours allow you to experience different natural landscapes. Snow-covered countrysides and lush spring valleys are both beautiful backgrounds for social media posts. Your friends and followers will be envious of your travels regardless of the season.
Mix and match. Indirect flights cost less
If you’ve got the time, booking indirect flights can save you money. Long layovers can be a pain, but they give you an opportunity to explore new locations. Many airports have options to check your luggage, which means you get to wander through a new city baggage-free. Another way to travel for less is to mix and match flights. Booking through separate airlines allows you to fit your itinerary to your schedule, often for a cheaper price. Budget airlines offer low fares out of select airports but watch for extra baggage fees. Some destinations have multiple airports. Switching between airports in close proximity is also a money-saving technique.
The memories you make on your travels generate a lifetime of epic stories. Don’t let airfare prices hold you back. Get money smart about booking your travel and pack a bag for your next travel adventure.