I often get asked to help people find the lowest prices on things like airfare, cruises, and car rentals. Since we live in a foreign country we do travel often and it is important that we get a great price. In the next couple of days I am going to share with you how I can always find the best prices available for what we need.
Today I will tell you all I know about getting the cheapest air fare available. Price do fluctuate a lot so if you see a good deal make sure you purchase it and don’t wait!
~Kayak.com – I love this site because I can see what airlines fly to the destination I want to fly to. If I see a really great price I first go directly to the website of the airlines. Most airlines say their websites have the best prices so that is why I check there first. The only problem with with Kayak is that airlines like Southwest, Jet Blue and smaller airlines are not included in this search. Kayak also lets you figure out the final cost based on how much luggage you have.
~Sometime Orbitz, Expedia, and Travelocity have better prices but they do charge a fee*. These travel websites also let you book your round-trip flight on 2 different airlines. Go check out the cost of the 1-way fares at the airlines website when this happens and you may get a better deal. I once bought 2 separate flights on American. The first ticket was Mexico-Miami and then I bought a ticket from Miami-Tampa. By purchasing it this way I saved about $100! I called the airline and they were able to connect the flights so I did not have to worry about transferring my own luggage.
~Be FLEXIBLE! Just by changing your flight by 1 day can save you a ton of money!
~Check smaller airports! St Pete airport is only 10 minutes from Tampa airport but they fly direct to smaller cities and most times it is cheaper.
~Want to find out what airlines do fly to the airport you want to go to? Check out Flight Stats. In the flight status box click the “by route” tab and enter in your city and the city you want to go to. This will let you know if there are any direct flights you may not know about. If you click the tab “airport” and put in the airport you want to fly into you will see all the flight into that airport. This is also a great website to check the status of flights.
~So now you found a flight you like! You can go to a website called YAPTA. (Your Awesome Personal Travel Assistant – I did not make that up!) This will help you track the fare of your preferred flight. If you have already bought the ticket you can click the “refund” tab and if the fare goes down enough you can get a refund or a voucher!
If there is somewhere you would like to visit but you are not sure when, sign up for email alerts. You will get alerts from the following website when the fares go down.
Travelocity – you can also search for flight without putting in dates.
Kayak– They will email you the cheapest fares and the dated they are available.
If you dont care where you go – you just want to go somewhere check this out, I call it my Dream Map! You put in your home airport and it will give you the cheapest airfares all over the world!
One Final thought…If you have a good experience let the airlines know! Also if it was a bad experience let them know. I have done both. When I have complained in the past I have received airline vouchers! Continental once gave is $75 vouchers because we had such a bad experience. I have also complained about my experience that I have purchased through Orbitz or Expedia and they have given us some kind of monetary compensation.
*The fees charged by Orbitz, Travelocity, and Expedia are being waived until May 31, 2009. They could extend this because I have read it is really helping their business.