Airlines are notorious for changing their rates up and down according to availability and prices of the competition. It must have happened to you too: you had your eye on a flight. You write a quick email to your travel partner to check whether you should book it or not. Your travel partner confirmed it’s all go and you go back to the airline’s website only to find the price has changed. Of course, most of the time it will have gone up. How do you avoid this and get the cheapest flights? Read on!
1. Browse from a private window
2. Use flexible dates
Even if your travel date isn’t flexible at all, always use flexible dates when you search for flights. If you put in that you want to travel on a certain date, you will probably get a more expensive price, because the airline will assume you have no other choice than to travel on this date.
If you can, try to keep your schedule flexible, so you can choose the cheapest day to travel on.
3. Use comparison sites
I always put my dates and destination into a travel comparison site such as Skyscanner, Kayak or Cheapflights. And preferably I will do the search in those 3 websites. You would be surprised by the differences in price you still get. Personally I find Kayak the most user friendly, and you can choose flexible dates 1, 2 or 3 days before and after your desired dates.
4. Go to the airline’s own website
This is the last step, and also an important one. After you put your search into the comparison site and you have found a flight you like, always go back to the airline’s own website. They might sell the same flight at a cheaper price after all. If there is a promotion at the moment the comparison site will pick up on it, but they will add a (hidden) commission to the price. Also, the comparison sites will only have a limited amount of seats available at that price, so you will often get the message that the flight you wanted has sold out at that price.
After doing these searches you can now choose whether to book directly with the airline or with the comparison site. Seems a lot of work to you? Hey, time is money! I never said you didn’t have to put in the work to find the cheapest flight… ;)
Good luck hunting!