Megan Bryant is a passionate writer and traveler who has combined her two loves to help others fulfill their traveling dreams. When she isn’t writing, she’s usually curled up with her 3 Dachshunds and a good book or planning her next adventure—wherever that may be.
No one likes paying more than they have to for flights. And with flight prices increasing, more and more people are looking for ways to reduce the cost of their air travel.
If you’re after a cheap last-minute flight deal—or any flight deal for that matter—then you’ll want to try out these 11 money-saving tips.
Be Flexible With Destinations
If you don’t have a particular destination in mind and you just simply need a vacation—don’t worry, we’ve all been there—then being flexible with destinations could save you hundreds of dollars.
Many flight booking websites like Skyscanner give you the option to input “anywhere” as a destination, opening your search to countries all over the world.
The site will bring up various options and prices, which you can then filter through. Once you find a destination—and price—you like the look of, you can book your vacation and jet off to explore somewhere you may have never even thought about.
Be Flexible With Dates
Another thing to be flexible about when looking for cheap flights is your dates. Some dates throughout the year are more expensive than others, for example, during school holidays or over the Christmas period. Giving yourself the flexibility to choose dates when flights are at their lowest could equate to a fairly good flight deal.
Again, go onto a flight comparison website and look at the whole month as opposed to a specific date. Prices will come up for each individual date, so you can then see which days/weeks are the cheapest to travel.
Search for One-Way Flights
Instead of booking a round-trip ticket, you may find that two one-way flights are a cheaper option. Booking two one-way flights means you can mix and match airlines to find the best deal. So do a search for both a round-trip and two one-ways and see which one works out the cheapest.
Check Nearby Airports
If you’re finding that flights to a particular airport are above your budget, then look into flights flying into airports in the surrounding area.
For example, in London, there are five different airports you can fly into. And although there may be one that is closest to your accommodation, an airport slightly further out, combined with a different form of travel, could be far cheaper.
Search all your options and figure out how long you’re willing to travel once you’ve landed at your destination. The busiest and most practical airports aren’t always the best for your budget.
Search for Individual Tickets
If you’re traveling in a group, instead of booking tickets for all members on the same booking, search for individual tickets. Occasionally you’ll find low price seats by searching for just one seat at a time because there may only be one left at the low price point. Searching for a group of four won’t bring that particular seat up, so it’s always best to check.
It may mean that you won’t be sitting next to each other on the flight. But really, is that too much of an issue if you could save money?
Check Websites Regularly
You won’t find great deals if you aren’t looking for them. So regularly check flight comparison sites and airline sites. As people cancel their flights or as it gets closer to the date, a seat with a low price may pop up ready for you to book.
Top tip: Before refreshing your search, clear your cookies. Airline websites monitor whether you’ve checked their site in the past. So if they know you’re regularly checking—because you obviously do want a flight—they will only show you expensive options.
Set Price Alert Notifications on Flights
Some flight comparison websites allow you to set price alerts on particular flights. By setting a price alert, you’ll receive a notification informing you when flight prices have increased or decreased so you can snag a great deal—if prices drop, that is.
Book as Early as Possible
If you already know well in advance when you want to go on vacation, then booking as far away from the date as you can will bring up the lowest prices. Leaving flights to the last minute is somewhat a gamble as they could be extremely cheap as airlines want to fill the seats or really expensive as airlines hope to make as much money as possible.
Wait Until the Last Minute
Waiting until the last minute can pay off if you’re looking for cheap flights. But you shouldn’t bank on it. As people cancel tickets or if a particular flight isn’t in high demand, you may be able to purchase a ticket for way under your budget. Waiting until the last minute, however, can have the opposite effect, but it’s always worth a try.
Call Package Vacation Companies
Calling package vacation companies is another way to save money on flights. As companies want to sell as many flights as possible, they may have a great deal that you wouldn’t have otherwise known about.
Package vacation websites are a great place to look if you aren’t too fussy about where you want to travel to. These companies are also great if you aren’t the most tech-savvy, as their vacations include your flights, hotel, and food.
Take Red Eye Flights
Red-eye flights are often far cheaper than flights that depart during the daytime as the demand for them is lower. But if you don’t mind staying awake a bit later than usual, then taking red-eye flights is a great way to save money.
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