If I had a dollar for every time someone asked me how Dane and I get cheap flights, I would have a lot of dollars. Traveling is a passion for both of us, but finding cheap flights is a MUST. Flying to/from Hawaii is a haul and doesn’t come cheaply, so when we travel, it’s often on a whim for a place we’ve found cheap airfare. Today I wanted to share a few travel hacks for finding cheap flights. These are all pretty universal for nearly any flight you book, but it’s always nice to save some money! If you’re in the mood for a vacation, here are 7 travel hacks for finding cheap flights!
7 Travel Hacks For Finding Cheap Flights
1. A private browsing window. This is the first one, because it’s the most important and I’ve seen firsthand the difference it makes. Using a private browsing window to look for flights is crucial, because believe me when I say that the internet is watching what you do! How else do ads for things you talk about pop up?! Anyway – once your browser realizes you’re searching for flights to a specific place at a certain time, those flights will increase in price. Now, it may be a little or it may be a lot, but every dollar counts! Take the extra step to browse in a private window.
2. Use Google Flights. This one seems weird, but hear me out. When I know we want to go somewhere specific, but I’m not sure the cheapest time to go, I’ll pull up Google Flights. Google Flights lets you plug in your departure and destination locations and then pulls up a calendar with dates. This allows you to see the cheapest times to go! Sometimes it means shifting your ideal travel block, or leaving on a red-eye (that’s a serious money saving power move), but doing this allows you to see the cheapest dates to travel to your destination.
3. Cross check on ITA Matrix. ITA Matrix is a Google tool that is VERY USEFUL. It culls information from airlines and then allows you to sort results by location, cost per mile and date ranges. If you’re super flexible with date ranges this tool will often be your best best!
4. Using a VPN. This is a new-to-me travel hack that I learned from a seasoned traveler and that is — using a VPN to book flights. She explained that often flights are cheaper from the point-of-sale. Find more information by watching “How To Save Money On Flights Using A VPN”.
5. Use points, but not through your credit card’s portal. If you have accumulated credit card points, it can be really easy to want to “spend” them in your credit card’s travel portal. STEP AWAY! You will get more bang for your proverbial buck if you take those points and cash them in directly toward an airline or hotel brand. Then, book directly with the airline or hotel. Often credit card point transfer are 1:1, but sometimes they are more, so keep an eye out for specials.
6. Build in a layover. Sometimes this is referred to as “stitching” flights, but having a long layover somewhere will almost always save you a big chunk of money. Building in a layover to Kenya saved us THOUSANDS of dollars (shoutout to my best friend for having a wedding ;)) If you’re able to book single segments with a layover (and don’t mind that), you can save on airfare.
7. Don’t be afraid of multi-city. This means, not all roundtrip tickets are the cheapest option. We are famous for flying into one city and flying out of another, solely because it saves us a could hundred dollars in airfare. For example, at Christmas, Dane and I flew from Honolulu into NYC, enjoyed NYC all decked out for the holidays, took the train down to PA to be with our families over the holidays and then flew back to Honolulu out of Baltimore. I think a lot of people still believe that RT in/out of the same place is always the cheapest option (and that used to be true), but times are a-changing.
If you enjoyed this post, you might also enjoy How To Get The Cheapest Airfare Possible.