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Holidays aren’t cheap.
In fact, the average UK family of four spends approximately 25% of its annual income on holidays each year. That’s right, the typical cost of going on holiday twice a year comes in at almost £7,000.
That’s a lot of money by most people’s standards. Indeed, it’s common for families to go into debt to avoid skipping their trip.
With accommodation, food, drinks, activities, and entertainment to cover, the costs can quickly stack up. Among the many costs involved, flights can be a major expense.
Thankfully though, there are some clever hacks that can save you money. Intrigued?
Keep reading to learn how to get the cheapest flights possible.
Here are some simple ways to reduce the amount you’ll spend on flights.
When you book your flight makes a difference.
However, in reality, there’s no definitive ‘best time’ to book. People will tell you there is. For instance, some research indicates that 47 days prior to departure is best. However, others say 54. And then others suggest 62 days. How do you know who to believe?
In reality, prices do change over time. But it’s impossible to apply a rule of thumb approach.
Our suggestion would be to put a price tracker on far in advance.
Most flight comparison websites offer this functionality. It’s a set it and forget it deal. You know how much you want to spend on a flight. All you need to do is tell the website to send you a notification when that price becomes available.
When you book might not make a difference.
But, when you fly absolutely does.
Off-peak and out of season times will most definitely be far cheaper. Likewise, avoid major holiday seasons and bank holidays if you can. These tickets are in demand, so the airlines put the prices up accordingly.
Fly early in the morning. Fly late at night. Fly when no-one else wants to. And save money in the process.
Flight comparison sites are your friend.
There’s a whole lot out there. You’ve got Kayak, Skyscanner, and Google Flights to name a few.
Practice your due diligence and put some serious research into finding the best flights. Don’t settle for the first price that comes back. Remember, airlines regularly alter costs according to timings and demand.
It’s in your interest to check on all price comparison sites over a number of days. Likewise, go directly to the airline. Comparison sites are great, but they aren’t fool-proof.
Do your research. But do it sensibly.
What do we mean by that? Essentially, websites drop cookies on your computer when you visit them. Those cookies can then impact what you see at a later date.
The same applies to airfares. Have you ever searched for a flight, clicked away, and then searched again to find the price has gone up? It’s the same flight, but the price has magically increased. Thank the cookies. The airlines know you’re interested in that flight, so put the price up accordingly.
Avoid the problem by searching in an incognito window.
Here’s another computer hack that can help.
There’s some evidence to suggest that you’ll be charged more money in relation to where you book the flight from. Say you’re in the UK and want to fly from London to Paris. The sneaky sites may put the price up because you’re booking in the UK.
A virtual private network (VPN) can be used to good effect. They make it look as if your IP address is based elsewhere. In the above example, basing yourself in France may lead you to lower airfares.
Traveling with kids? Ask about discounts.
It’s as easy as that. Some airlines are pretty good at offering free or discounted seats to children. They may need to be under a certain age. It may not be possible for budget airlines. But it’s always worth checking!
This is the real secret to flying cheaply.
Don’t get set on a certain destination. Being flexible with where you go can save you hundreds of pounds. Indeed, you can find some insanely cheap prices.
Try going to Skyscanner now. Type in your dates and the number of people going. But under the destination section, put ‘everywhere’. You’ll be shown the cheapest destinations available to you.
At the time of writing, for under £40, an adult could get a roundtrip in the middle of summer to Spain, Sweden, Norway, France, Italy, and many more.
Paying the check-in luggage can sometimes double the price of a flight.
That’s why it pays to travel light. Try fitting all of your luggage into a carry-on. This is a sure fire way to save money.
You’d be surprised how much you can pack into a maximum size piece of hand-luggage too!
Sometimes, two flights are cheaper than one.
Back in the day, you’d be hard-pressed to find a round-trip ticket that was more expensive than two singles. But times have changed!
These days taking two flights can make all the difference. A second airline may offer a cheap one-way ticket from your holiday destination back home. You fly out on one ticket, with airline A. Then you fly back on a separate ticket, with airline B.
Sure, you sacrifice a bit of convenience. You may even have to fly home from a different airport. But the cost savings may make it worth your while.
There you have it: 9 simple ways to get the cheapest flights possible.
Holidays are expensive. But everyone deserves them. And you shouldn’t have to go into debt to afford one! Thankfully, there are ways to save. Your flights are one standard expense where you can cut down on costs.
Hopefully, the information above has explained how to do it! Good luck!
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