How to Get Cheaper Flights

Cheap flights.

Flying is expensive, and it doesn't help when the airlines and the ticket agencies are all playing games to jack up the prices. You need to know the best ways to get cheaper rates, so I thought I'd pass along some tips I learned. This may not be all there is to know on the subject, but will help.

There are many factors that go into the price of your trip.  How many flights will it take?  What day of the week are you flying on?  What time of day will you go?  To get the very cheapest rates, these are things you may want to be flexible on.

Let's walk through a scenario in which you want to go for a two-week vacation in Rome.

Your Browser

The very first thing we're going to do is open your browser in a privacy mode.  For Google Chrome, that's called Incognito.  For Firefox, that's called a Private session.  In either event, you'll want to use this mode because web sites booking flights and hotels look at your cookies.  What does that mean?  It means they know how often you've looked at the flight you're interested in.  And each time, they increase the price.

SkyScanner.net

This website is your new best friend for finding flights.  Go to this site, and follow these steps:

Skyscanner Toolbar.
  • Start off by selecting the One Way option.
  • Enter your departure and destination airports in the appropriate spaces.
  • Click on the Depart Date.
  • You'll notice that there is a tab here marked Whole Month.  Click on that.
whole month
  • Select the month that you want to leave.  This is the handiest function.  You are now presented with the cheapest airfare between your selected airports for each day of your selected month.
  • Choose your departure date and just make a note of it on a piece of paper.
Flights for the month.
  • Close the browser, and re-open it using the private mode again.
  • Follow these steps again, but put those airports in again in reverse order.
  • This will help you choose your return date.  Write it down on a piece of paper.
  • Close the browser once more, and re-open it.
  • Select a round-trip flight, and enter your departure and destination airports.
  • Select the departure and return dates you selected.

You now have cheap flights.  Now, as I said, this process requires that you be a bit flexible about the times you fly. Taking flights others avoid means cheaper airfare.  Also, don't be afraid to tinker with airports that are near your destination, but not necessarily in it.  Sometimes you can find cheaper fares and still be close enough.