If you need to book a flight and want to get the best deal possible, we want to help. After tirelessly scouring the Internet, we’ve assembled the absolute best tips for saving big on flights. So without further ado, here are four proven strategies for getting the ticket you need at a price that’s not going to send you into shock:
1. Know the Right Time to Book
A study conducted by ARC found that the ideal time to book a flight is six weeks in advance. While there are exceptions, since the study involved compiling four years’ worth of data from every travel agency in the US, it’s a solid rule of thumb. Also, keep in mind that even if you’ve already passed that mark, you can still use one or more of the rest of our tips to save money!
2. Optimize Your Travel Days and Times
Thanks to the amount of data they have access to, FareCompare was able to determine the best day of the week to travel, as well as the best time. Their findings? Wednesday is the best day, while an airport’s first flight of the day to your destination is the best time to go. If Wednesday isn’t an option or you aren’t going to be gone for an entire week, Tuesdays and Saturdays are the next best days.
As you may have guessed, Fridays and Sundays are the most expensive days of the week to fly. And as a bonus tip for anyone who’s not able to book their flight six weeks in advance, FareCompare also found that regardless of how many weeks until your flight, Tuesdays at 3PM EST are the best time to buy your ticket.
3. Compare and Go Direct to the Source
One of the most common questions people have is whether they should use a comparison site or go directly through the airline’s own website. The answer to that question is you should do both! While a site like Kayak or Hipmunk may have the best deal for some flights, an airline’s own site may have the best deal for others. That’s especially true for airlines like Southwest, who’s flight schedules aren’t available through many comparison sites.
4. Get Creative
When you hear people bragging about snagging seemingly impossible deals on flights, it’s often because they were flexible and got creative with their booking. Booking two one-way flights with different airlines or renting a car to access an airport that’s up to 100 miles from a main hub are just two examples of strategies that may initially seem crazy, but can actually be economically viable!
By putting one or more of the above tips into action, you should be pleasantly surprised by just how good of a deal you’re able to get on your next flight.
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