A single day, or in some cases only hours, is all it takes for the prices of airline tickets to fluctuate. What this means is that if you spend a lot of time deciding over one flight or the next, the price of that flight may change or the flight itself may even be unavailable by the time you try to book it. Now on the other hand you may be able to get very cheap flights by waiting to call, but chances are better that you may miss your flight or the prices will be different.
There are a few tricks however that you can use to find some very cheap flights out there. The only word of caution I’ll say before going into these tactics is to keep this to yourself… Otherwise your friends and family may start using these and letting all the secrets out of the bag! Pretty soon everyone will know how to get the cheapest air fare…
Now, the first thing you need to do is start looking for Cheap flight tickets Deals early on. And by “early”, I’m not talking a week or two beforehand. You should start the search at least a month out, and in some cases (or depending on where you’re going) you may even want to start sooner.
Keep in mind though: you’re just looking around at this point; you’re not actually buying a ticket yet. You want to start looking this far ahead of time because you want a ballpark estimate at what prices the tickets are. This will allow you to track how much their actual prices fluctuate as you approach your travel date.
You’ll definitely see the prices increase or possibly decrease. This is in part due to three different factors: demand, competition, and inventory.
If more people start to book a particular flight that indicates to the airline company that that particular flight is in demand, so they’ll raise their prices. On the other hand, if a particular flight isn’t selling, the airline company will usually drop its price to try to sell more. This is one way to easily pick up very cheap flights.
Competition plays a huge role in this price fluctuation though. Let’s say for example that the popular Northwest Airline decides to offer a 10% discount on flight tickets, giving it a huge advantage. Well, you can bet it wouldn’t be long before United Airlines or other big players start offering similar promotions, taking away the advantage Northwest would have. This will lead to price increases or decreases as well.
The moral of the story is that if you want to find very cheap flights, you need to keep yourself informed on the latest trends or promotions these airline companies are having.
Next, and this is a fairly big one: Don’t give you specific dates when you call airline companies about flights. You want to say that your schedule is flexible and that you were just looking for the lowest rates for your destination.
If you’re considering going on a vacation or personal trip (alone or with the family), then the dates wouldn’t matter so much as the price of the ticket. Trust me- it’s much easier to change your travel date than it is to keep buying expensive flight tickets.
Here’s a quick tip: winter is usually the best time to find cheap flight tickets, with the exception being right before Christmas and Thanksgiving. If you’re looking to get away, you should check out the vacation dates in the winter months.
Another way you can save money on your air fare tickets is to request off-peak flight schedules.
Everyone wants to get home at reasonable times and so the later flights, midnight or later, are usually very cheap. Even flights around 2AM will be cheaper. We’re talking almost half the price of normal morning flights, or flights in the early afternoon.
Discounts can be great, but make sure you ask around before buying very cheap flights, since most of them come with certain restrictions. In most cases, the actual discounts only work for you under specific conditions. These restrictions are usually easy to adhere to though; it’s normally conditions like how you need to buy your ticket in advance or make a reservation.
If a condition is that you have to buy your tickets in advance, that only means that you need to buy your ticket between one and three weeks beforehand. This will, however, guarantee you get the discounted seats. As for the Saturday booking, the reason it’s typically cheaper is because falling on a Saturday would mean it’s an excursion trip rather than a business trip, the more expensive counterpart.
The best thing to do is to read up and stay current on discounts so you can hopefully use them to your advantage. And make sure to get round trip air fare; you can save a few dollars by booking the return flight with the same airline.
Now this next strategy won’t apply to everyone, but if you’re a senior citizen or just in the older crowd, you should make your age well known. Some airline companies will offer exclusive senior citizen discounts, which is something you may qualify for if you’re older.