Traveling has become second nature to me so booking flights and hotels has too. There are so many different great websites to book travel with better deals than ever before, but there’s still a few tricks of the trade you might not know.
- Time and Day Matters
It’s not a coincidence that anytime you leave or return on a Tuesday it’s much cheaper than your flight in or out on a Friday. The day in the week that you choose to travel is important when trying to get the best flight deal possible but purchasing airfare tickets on a Tuesday around 3 pm has yielded the best results. Timing does matter on any day that you travel, earlier flights tend to be cheaper and the highest price flights are usually in the late evening.
2. Fly On A Holiday
I know, I know, the whole reason you planned the trip was to be in that city for the holiday but a lot of times the actual holiday falls on a day like Monday or Tuesday and all the celebrations are held the weekend prior like on Friday or Saturday so flying back on the actual holiday doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice the parties, the holiday fun or your money. To give you a more specific example, this year Halloween falls on a Monday. All the parties of course will be the Saturday before, October 29TH. So, if you want to experience Halloween in Vegas or New Orleans for the weekend and fly back on Monday, October 31st, you can save A LOT on airfare.
- Round Trips Aren’t Always The Best
After years of traveling near and far, I found that booking two one ways instead of one round trip can save you a nice chunk of change. Major travel sites won’t always pair together the best times for you on a departing and returning flight. Sometimes you want to leave in the early morning and return at night, many sites will pair an early morning outbound flight with an even earlier return flight. Booking 2 one ways allows you to pick when you come and go and will almost always be cheaper than the round trip airfare.
- Major airline Credit Cards Are The Way To Go
Nowadays there are a lot of great credit cards to choose from, offering reward points, miles and cash back bonuses. If you’re already charging trips on a credit card or paying for a vacation on a debit card, why not charge it and pay the balance later. It’s the same process that you would regularly go through to book just with some nice bonus miles.
- Beat The System
A lot of times international flights can be at unholy prices depending of course how far you are traveling. One key trick of the trade is to look for your flight through an airline from your destination country. For example, I want to fly to Barcelona, so instead of booking through a site like Cheap Tickets or Expedia, I’m going to go to Iberia.com. Here’s the trick, once you’ve chosen what international airlines to fly with, change your location. Since I was home, I changed the location from U.S. to Colombia. You can still keep the language in English so there’s no confusion during booking and this strategy will almost always get you a cheaper price for airfare.
- Browse On The Low
One thing major airlines will always do is track how frequently a traveler visits and/or if they have been to the destination before. One way to make sure that your airfare is not any higher (if you regularly visit the same city) is to turn on private browsing for whichever browser you’re using. This can help you save a nice chunk of change.
- VIP Entry
If you’re a frequent flyer, chances are you have heard of TSA Pre Check or Global entry. If you haven’t already signed up for either, what are you waiting for? Signing up for either, after getting approved, can mean little to no time going through customs and/ or re-entering the country. Applications are submitted to the U.S. Customs and Border patrol and once you’re approved, it’s smooth sailing every time you fly international.