The most common question I receive in my Instagram inbox from followers or passers-by is ‘how do you afford to travel?’. So I’ve decided that it is way overdue that I share my secrets on how I find and book cheap flights.
The usual route of booking a trip is ‘I want to go to X, how can I get there for Z?’, but if you’re looking for a cheap deal the best thing to do to is take this route is flip it and reverse it. When you set out to find and book cheap flights, the ideal plan of action is to ask ‘I have Z, what are the options for X?’ (if you haven’t realised yet, X is the destination, Z is the budget). By not focusing your search on one destination the possibility of booking a cheap flight to a great destination skyrockets.
A little thing called ‘cookies’ informs websites that you are a frequent visitor by storing data about your search queries and patterns. Using your cookies, the website’s algorithm will automatically raise the price of the flight you search for if you do so frequently. By opening a new page in Google Incognito mode each time that you search for a specific flight, you avoid having your data tracked and can help to ensure that you book a cheap flight.
Don’t follow the crowd
It’s well known that the prime times for international travel rotate around kids’ school holiday schedules. The summer weeks of July and August, Christmas weeks of late December and early January as well as the Easter weeks of April should all be a last resort if you’re hoping to score a cheap flight. For me, May is the very best month to travel, as the weather in many country’s tends to be mild, tourist levels low and flight costs even cheaper.
Use these websites
Somewhat of a newbie, but quickly becoming a classic, Google Flights is my go-to for getting better-than-good idea of where I can travel to within the scope of my budget. My favourite feature of Google Flights is that you can simply enter your departure airport and desired dates and the website’s map will show all your possible destinations and how much it will cost to reach them. You are also able to view a price graph for each destination that allows you to pinpoint the cheapest time to fly.
With no exaggeration, I check this website daily. Secret Flying is undoubtedly my favourite source for discovering surreally cheap flight deals. The website is updated on a 24-hour basis with low-cost deals that you would struggle to find elsewhere. In my opinion, Secret Flying is ideal when you have a set budget for your trip but no preference on location.Often the flights are only available for a limited period of time as they get snapped up quickly, so when you do see something you like, it’s best to book it as soon as possible. My £299 flight from London to Aruba was booked using this website.
I have only started using Momondo very recently; it’s one of the newer flight comparison sites but it just as great as its competitors. Their Trip Finder tool is great for uncovering incredible destinations that you may have never thought of while remaining within your budget, time period, and interests. The best aspect of Momondo, in regards to finding cheap flights, is that, unlike some of its competitors, it checks some of the less-known low-cost airlines to ensure you get the best deal. Additionally, Momondo doesn’t restrict you to booking an outbound and inbound flight with the same carrier; the website often combines flights from multiple airlines in order to ensure that you get the best deal.